Vivid colors can add life to any room

Wednesday, January 30, 2002

NEW YORK -- Color creates a mood and a rhythm for a room. Yellow is cheerful; green is calming; and red is bold.

But just like everything else in life, color can be adapted to meet most every taste and lifestyle, says Anna Kasabian, author of "The New Home Color Book" (Rockport).

Red, for instance, is one of the boldest colors, leading many people to shy away from it, Kasabian says, but "red" could be a deep, dark and comforting rust or an ultra-feminine pale pink.

If you like red but can't imagine a red room, Kasabian advises choosing a wallpaper featuring red or a sofa covered in a red fabric.

Purple is another "big color" but it doesn't have to be.

Violet can be introduced into a room in the form of a pillow or drapes as punctuation points, Kasabian suggests in her book.

"A lighter hue on the wall with darker purple accents can look beautiful and is not so overwhelming. You'd be surprised," she says.

Green, according to Kasabian, is calming, earthy and very versatile. Shades of green with more blue in them tend to be cooler, richer and a little more formal. Green with yellowish tints are warmer and more outdoorsy. "Green can help the outside come in."

Blue is a more ubiquitous color than you think.

If you look for it, you'll probably find it in most homes, Kasabian says. When it's deep and dark it makes a big statement; a paler blue lends itself to florals or a "space that sings spring."

As for yellow -- "How can anyone not like yellow?" Kasabian asks.

It's a color that almost always positive, with a greenish yellow often used to complement an ultra-modern look while a purer yellow conjures up images of buttercups, daisies and rays of morning sun.

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