Coastal Style

Color Energizes Modern House Interiors

August 23, 2019

Recently I wrote about some contemporary homes that adopt color in their exteriors, but ironically, most of the homes featured are white on the inside. Even with drywall and other interior constructions that require painting, white is often preferred in modern homes. This minimalist and gallery-like aesthetic lets an operator’s possessions take centre stage, be they books, art, furniture or other items that customize the space.

But as with contemporary exteriors, architects and clients should not be afraid of using colour in contemporary interiors. This ideabook highlights various methods for applying colour to thin and simple interiors; it includes spaces within the few buildings that I wrote about previously that brought color indoors.

Klopf Architecture

In interiors, colors tend to stand out — particularly red. There are two splashes of paint in this living space, but only one is architectural. The red column actually accentuates how it is distinct from the planar elements (walls, floors, ceiling, window).

Building Lab, inc..

Great places to apply colour are stairs and halls, which graph our movements through a house. Red, by way of example, equated with excitement and strength, can heighten our energy when moving from room to room. In this example, the reddish guardrails accentuate the colour in the stairway.

Intexure Architects

Considering that the activity of cooking, red is also appropriate for a kitchen, a space ripe for colour through the use of backsplashe tiles. This kitchen contrasts some wonderful reddish tiles with light wood cabinets. The white grout keeps the red from being overpowering.

Mohler + Ghillino Architects

The yellow house within my previous ideabook accomplishes its colour through plywood panels, which can be extended indoors to good effect. The material covers the ceiling and walls in the living room, and also the door and window frames fit to accentuate the warmth.

Paul Welschmeyer ARCHITECTS & energy consultants

The aptly called Blue Pickle Loft provides some good lessons for using colours indoors. Smaller spaces within a big, raw loft interior are articulated through blue ceilings and walls beneath the concrete slab. The result is that of a blue pickle inserted into the loft.

Paul Welschmeyer ARCHITECTS & energy consultants

The plan illustrates the very long set of rooms running to the exterior wall, as a result of the awkward stepping of the parallel demising wall. Not merely do the blue spaces float in the middle of the flat, but they create fascinating tapered spaces alongside.

Paul Welschmeyer ARCHITECTS & energy consultants

The owners opted to get a single colour throughout, but I could observe a number of different possibilities: a gradient of light to dim from one side to the other or different colored walls for each space, unified by a ceiling or soffit of a single colour. The loft is a testament to a strong idea of a zone of colour within a raw and gray distance.

ZeroEnergy Design

What about floors? You may ask. Well, rugs are not the only canvases for colour, as this New England house shows. A subflooring material was painted a light blue for your children’s bedroom and play with area. Not only does the blue stand out from the walls, but it strengthens the importance of this airplane for children. (My daughter plays everything on the floor.)

LASC Studio

As already mentioned, spaces where you journey though a house are ideal for colour, heightening the motion from point A to point B. Including treads and risers, as in this Swedish house, where the colour abstracts the surfaces and leaves them particularly playful.

Bushman Dreyfus Architects

Unsurprisingly, the green of the “abstracted farmhouse” contained in my previous ideabook extends to the inside. The light green is pleasing, but this view also shows how simple and color furnishings (an abstract assemblage of storage in this instance) can work together to create some powerful silhouettes and patterns.

Bushman Dreyfus Architects

Like the kitchen, the toilet is ripe for colour, because tiles are usually used for showers and other moist locations. Again we’re looking inside the “abstracted farmhouse.” The green walls and floors are utilized in this shower, making a strong statement at the conclusion of an in-bathroom corridor.

Moussafir Architectes

Modern interiors work great when minimalist surfaces are set against natural materials using their own colour as well as the occasional splashes of synthetic colour. Such is the case for this house in France, where green can be utilized interchangeably during — on the entry millwork (revealed), living room shelves and even to get a Murphy bed.

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