There’s lots we have to be excited about this summer—beach days, lazy porch evenings, and yes, even back-to-school shopping—but we’ll admit that we’re extra amped up about the upcoming Olympic Games. And we’re guessing that whether you’re a major sports fan all year long or simply enjoy the energy of rooting for the home team, you’re pretty pumped, too.
While there isn’t fully a way to recreate the energy of the Olympics year round, we do fully support the concept of decorating with the colors featured on the Olympic rings: blue, yellow, black, green, and red. To celebrate the spirit of the Games, we asked designers to share why they love incorporating these hues into their projects. Read on for inspiration!
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Soothing, Versatile Blue
Blue is a go-to hue for designers like Amy Leferink who frequently work on waterfront properties. “Since I design a lot of lake houses, I love bringing the outside in,” she noted. “Blue is a very calming, earthy color that can warm up a space while keeping it relatively neutral and universally appealing to whichever design aesthetic you bring into a home.”
And in addition to being versatile design-wise, there are so many different blue hues that one can choose from while decorating. “I also love the very many shades of blue,” Leferink added. “From the lightest, softest blue to a deep and rich navy, and everything in between, it is a color that has so many layers and characteristics and works in so many different spaces.”
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Vibrant, Happy Yellow
Ask anyone about the color yellow and they’ll immediately comment on its sunny qualities. “I love using yellow, as it packs a punch and is such a happy and cheerful color,” designer Emily Spanos said. “It’s a great way to add a pop of color to the room without overdoing it, while still creating a bright and lively ambiance.” Like with blue, there are many different shades of yellow that will shine in large and small doses alike. “Whether it's on a whole sofa or accenting with pillows, I am always incorporating mustard, citron, and other shades of yellows in my clients’ designs,” Spanos added. “Yellow elements give the room a bold and dynamic affect, yet still allow it to feel calm and intentional.”
Designer Beth Dotolo of Pulp Design Studios agreed. “It says fun without screaming it,” she said of the hue. “Yellow has so many moods, and especially against neutral woods and other natural elements, feels organic and fresh.”
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Don’t shy away from introducing black into your space for fear that it will gloom up a space too much—it actually does the opposite. “Black is the absence of color and light, so it pulls light into it and makes all the colors around it pop,” designer Laura Roberts explained. “It also enhances and complements any color you pair it with, and can be used in a variety of ways; as subtle accents or as a daring focal point.”
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Green reminds us of new life and growth, and it’s a designer fave in many different types of spaces. “Grassy green is such a fresh, cheerful color,” designer Annie Elliott shared. “Even as an accent, as in pillows or an occasional chair, green brightens up the darkest rooms.”
Designer Michelle Gage reflected on a living room project in which green served as the ideal complement to the other hues in the space. “Green acts as a great balance to both the darker and lighter tones in this living room,” she said. “This particular shade of green keeps the space feeling moody but also light. It’s also the perfect complement to the plant life in this room.”
And even if you don’t have plant babies present in your home, green easily pays a nod to natural elements outdoors. “Incorporating green into design ties interior spaces to the outside environment through the windows that surround the space,” architect Cathy Purple Cherry noted. “The hue is also calming and soothing because it evokes nature while adding a playful, fresh feeling.”Continue to 5 of 5 below.
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Red knows how to make a statement but doesn’t have to dominate a space to be noticed. “Red is a powerful color that is perfect for infusing interest into your space—you can't help but notice it! I love to use it as an accent color in pillows, art, and rugs,” designer Andi Morse said. “Even though it might be subtle, it can ground the room while still adding impact.” And don’t be afraid to go the patriotic route even when we’re not busy cheering on Team USA. “Red is the ideal addition to a space that needs a bit of warmth and intensity—especially when paired with classic blue and white or as an accent with more neutrals,” designer Maggie Griffin noted. “A red gourd lamp, a red coffee table, or a pair of red jars can add just the right amount of punch in a room!”