Category Archives: Public Spaces

Seeing Red {At Work}

I just had a discussion with someone the other day about using red in the workplace.  The guy I was speaking with said that although he likes red, he was hesitant about using it at his business because “red sends the message to stop.”  Really?

Well, don’t tell that to the wonderfactory, a successful web strategy business {pictured above}…and by all means do not mention that to internet powerhouse Google because they may think you’re kinda crazy.

{google offices via interiormagz}

There’s a reason why businesses use red.  No color captures your attention better or leaves more of an impression.  Red adds excitement and energy to a space.  Using red helps to get your business noticed and your brand remembered.  Red also keeps your employees motivated and engaged.



You may have also noticed that the food industry loves to use red.  That’s because red stimulates the appetite.  So, when you’re around food and ready to eat, the color red can make you hungrier.  Restaurants and grocery stores often use this color in their branding and decor as a way of enticing us to consume more.

{porter house designs}

Red can trigger a big appetite, but it’s also just a fun, chic color to use in public spaces.  I used plenty of red for an ice cream shop re-design {above} to the delight of the customers, especially the younger ones.  And in this modern eatery shown below, red tables and chairs steal the show.


So, in my opinion red means go.  It works at work…but what about at home, you ask?  Find out in my next post!

Restaurant Color {The Silver Star Diner}

You may remember my eDesign post when I gave you a glimpse of my color design for The Silver Star Diner in Ontario, Canada.  Well…

…I was so happy to discover that the restaurant finally opened, and from the photos I’ve seen, it looks terrific!  I was so honored when the restaurant’s owner {who is also a top chef} contacted me about creating the color design for his modern diner, which was still under construction at the time.


I didn’t travel the 400+ miles to the site {although I would have gladly done so}.  Instead, the owner and I exchanged sketches, drawings and photos via email, and we also had a couple of phone conversations.  In the end and after several months, The Silver Star Diner opened for business earlier this year.  Let me take you on a tour:

The restaurant’s owner wanted stand-out colors that would fit the diner’s modern take on tradition.  He also wanted the colors to attract customers and make them feel welcome.  I chose Eastlake Gold for the main color {very warm and inviting} and charcoal gray was used for the upholstered banquettes.

And for a little bling at the bar, I specified a metallic-silver upholstery for the stools.

{All paint colors are from Sherwin-Williams}

For the accents I selected fun, punch colors:  Robust Orange, Gentian and Ionian.  All of these colors are featured on the bar wall and on the upholstered chairs.  I wanted to have the bar wall color-blocked to create a strong focal point.  Then, chose Ionian for the coffee station wall:

Using ‘in-between’ colors gives a space tons of interest because they are so intriguing.  In this palette, Gentian is in-between purple and blue.  Ionian is a cross between green and blue.

Another great feature in this space is the ‘welcome wall’ at the front of the diner.  The owner wasn’t quite sure how to treat this wall, so I suggested a silvery-gray glass mosaic tile.  The idea was that the tiles would twinkle — just like stars.

Setting the mood with color is so important in commercial spaces.  Just like we want to feel comfortable in our homes, we also want to feel at home in our favorite restaurant.

If you need help choosing a color scheme for your restaurant, contact me at  I offer affordable eDesign services to assist you wherever you live {PayPal accepted}.

Photos by:  Class Act Productions; Reclaimed

the colors of facebook

We all know that denim blue is the brand color of choice for ‘social media giant’ facebook…

…but do they have one choice color for their working environment?  These photos of facebook’s corporate offices suggest not.  Not just one color, that is — but instead they’ve used a palette of warm hues and gray tones.

{Check out the DJ turntables.  Very convenient for after-work parties.}

I’m always fascinated by creative work spaces {did you see my post about LEGO?} because they almost always include the inventive use of color.

I’m actually surprised that the facebook offices aren’t a little more over-the-top, but it works.  Often, industrial environments can look sterile and cold, but because they’ve used splashes of warm hues — mustard yellow, red, rusty orange and warm gray — the space appears somewhat cozy.

Then again, nothing really looks too comfortable.  I guess when you’re on top, there is no rest for the weary.

All photos from Facebook FBML Templates.

Color Inspiration from LEGO

I’m often inspired by commercial spaces, and the offices of LEGO are no exception.

I mean, don’t you wish your office looked like this?  Fun colors are linked to productivity and innovative thinking.  Isn’t that one reason why we all play with LEGO’s when we’re kids?

{Conference room or dining room?  Love the citrine green flooring}

The entire color palette of white, black, red and green is very lively and contemporary — great hues for a home office, too…

…although, if you work for LEGO, why would you want a home office when you can go to work and do this??

All images from ihouse-designs

Styled In Color

I am in total awe of this insanely colorful ‘concept salon’ designed by Garry Cohn.

style club1

The Style Club in Dublin, Ireland has got to be the most energetic, color-packed salon on earth.  It definitely pushes the limits of design, color and pattern — but that’s the whole idea.

style club2

This cutting edge establishment offers daring trends in hair styling — and the interior was designed to reflect just that.  I’m really loving the pink giraffe print on the ceiling.

style club6

style club7

style club8

This is more than just getting your hair done {did I mention the live DJ?}.  This is an experience.  Wow!

photos from