Designer Tracey Rapisardi shares her tips for colorful rooms with plenty of taste.
1 of 5Deborah Whitlaw Llewellyn
Show your personality
Homeowner Laurie Fisher found her original 1951 gas stove
through Vintage Stoves, Inc. (
Kansas-based company that sells and refurbishes old units. Tracey
sent the company a pink potholder. After a precise color match, she
received a painted metal "swatch" for approval. When Tracey gave
them the OK, they sprayed the stove with the approved shade of
pink. The Big Chill (
Colorado company, then painted one of their retro-style fridges to
match the antique stove.
2 of 5Deborah Whitlaw Llewellyn
A designer's job is to give your home a complete look without
"making things matchy-matchy," Tracey says. "There should be some
individuality to the room, but the elements still have to go
together." She wove similar shades of pink, blue, and green
throughout the house for cohesion, but chose various patterns and
fabrics to spice things up.
3 of 5Deborah Whitlaw Llewellyn
Choose a new hue
"You don't have to repeat the exact same colors from room to room,"
Tracey says. "If you want to create impact, you have to introduce
another color." In the dining room, a bold blue buffet and a
yellow-green plate rack pop against the original palette.
4 of 5Deborah Whitlaw Llewellyn
Pay attention to proportion
Tracey took advantage of the dining room's high ceilings to
experiment with pattern, but made sure the scale was
appropriate. "The size of your patterns has to be proportionate,"
she says. To create balance, she had 8-inch stripes painted on the
wall and complemented them with a large checkerboard pattern on the
5 of 5Deborah Whitlaw Llewellyn
Embellish from every angle
If a couch or chair can be seen from several different rooms,
make it worth looking at. Tracey covered the seats of the living
room sofas in a flirty pink floral, but used a pretty pinstripe on
their backs. "The stripe looks nice with the colors and patterns of
the dining room," she says. "So when you see the couch from the
other room, it blends."