A color puzzle! I'm stuck...

sundance510July 13, 2014

Welcome back to my kitchen! This is what it looks like at this stage. Excuse the mess please... this was a spur of the moment post.

My grandmother is going to be using our old round table that doesn't fit in our kitchen and those chairs go with the set. I got 4 free chairs from my cousin that needed some work. I've repaired them and plan to paint them an off-white. I received my fabric samples for the seats yesterday and I'm having a terrible time deciding. Some of you will recall that the metal sign next to the pantry is my "design seed" of sorts. It's a greeny aqua color, rusty orange and navy. Here are my questions:

1) Which of these fabrics would you use for the chairs? I LOVE the bird fabric, but I think it's too busy right next to the curtains. The aqua in these fabrics are more blue than in the sign, but I don't think I need to be so nit-picky (correct me if I'm wrong). Remember the chairs will be off-white, although the idea of painting them navy has intrigued me as well.

2) In light of your fabric choice, what color would you repaint the island? Navy, off-white or aqua? Should the aqua be the shade that's in the sign or in the fabric?

3) Would you put a rug under the island to add some texture? I was all set to buy a dark blue and white braided rug (oval 5x8), but I think the lady is backing out on me :(

As always, THANK YOU!!!

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Well I don't think the bird fabric is too busy, I would go with it. You love it and it will make you smile each time you see it. I actually have a sample of it in another color, because I'm thinking of using it on my dining room chairs :)
The island aqua but the navy would look good too... and no rug. I think it would just end up being a pain to keep clean.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 5:38PM
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I'd go with the navy, your inspiration has the color and it goes well with the wood and the floor. It would look great against the lighter shade of the seats and I feel the bird one might confuse the eye with the curtains nearby. The light blue is too pale for any contrast. You need a strong color to hold up to the island imo.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 5:40PM
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Navy for me. I love your curtains!

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 5:57PM
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I like the bird print with the curtain print, but I would say no to a braided rug. I think a seagrass or sisal rug would look fresher.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 6:24PM
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the navy seems just a bit too bright to me-- i would look for a deeper navy... i think a navy would look better than a lighter blue with your floors. i also don't think the aqua is quite the right shade either...
i love the bird print, but think it would be more suited to drapes than chair covers...

i'd be more inclined to put a rug under the table rather than the island...

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 6:59PM
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I think the bird fabric is adorable and has the variation of blues that you need. I wonder if it would be hard to keep clean, and if a heavier weight upholstery fabric would be better. Not sure the medium blue goes with the curtain. Wish we could see it next to the curtain, along with the navy. IMO, the navy looks off next to the curtain, which appears to be more indigo blue. Can you try to find multi-colored blues and teals to tie it all together. GWebbers will help. Are all the fabrics cleanable? I used drapery wt. fabric on dining chairs at one time, and had a lot of wear.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 7:04PM
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No rug. Bird on chairs.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 7:42PM
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Thanks for the responses so far. I have included a close-up of the curtain and the fabrics. I know that the lighter blue in the curtain is not aqua, but it's small enough when you step away that you can't really tell. I think this picture shows the true color of the navy a bit better.

While I appreciate the feedback so far, but I'm really having trouble with the big picture. I need to know what you all think I should repaint the island AND what fabric to use. Bonus points for commenting on off-white vs another color to paint the chairs. I only mentioned the rug just because if I got it, then I obviously wouldn't paint the island navy. Consensus is leaning towards no rug though and I can live with saving the $$ anyway. Thanks!

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 8:08PM
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I like the navy and no to the bird fabric.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 8:53PM
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OK, here goes: I'm sticking with the navy for chair covers. If you're set on painting the chairs, I'd choose the door and trim color, whatever white that is. It appears that you have black appliances, so, you might think about glossy black or metallic silver island legs. However.... and this is based on my love of color, I would exit the blues and paint those legs a wild red or orange. Seems to me your kitchen could use an upstart personality to liven things up.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 9:27PM
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A vote for navy fabric .... which will look wonderful with the painted chairs .....

Paint the legs of the island in high-gloss navy -- as well as the legs of the table .....

Then add the fun color dashes of orange .... salt-n-peppers; bowls; mixer etc.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 10:26PM
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Oh, tomatofreak.... you're a braver soul than I am! DH would kill that idea immediately anyways. I know blue is an unusual pick for a kitchen, but it's what I've landed on after a lot of agonizing. I think it could work if I find the right balance and that's where I'm stuck right now. I decided to work with my cabinets as they are, which has made decorating very difficult. I know that my kitchen is nowhere near the caliber of others on here, so I appreciate everyone who has taken the time to help me piece things together. Hopefully I can figure out how to be satisfied in here!!

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 10:31PM
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I would go with a multicolored fabric instead of solid color (of course). Try this calico corners Akira Indigo next to your drapery. Can you Keep your teal island, then?

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 11:17PM
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Thanks teacats and voila. I think the teal island is going to change no matter what fabric I choose... I don't think it was the right color from the beginning. That has been the opinion on here anyways. I don't know where to find a fabric like that, but my main concern is budget. The fabrics I'm looking at are below $15/yd.

For what it's worth, these are the actual design seeds that caught my eye originally and made me think that my orange-y cabs could work with blue. The second one, just visualize blueberries instead of raspberries :)

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 11:34PM
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Liking voila's fabric and idea!

Why do you want to paint the island? If you do, maybe something in the red family but mellow with brown and some orange tones with it. That will enhance your blues and complement your cabinet color nicely.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 11:40PM
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Going with a solid color, IMO, limits you. Multicolor opens up multiple options, for matching or contrasting. You probably only need 2-3 yards to recover the chair seats. What ever you choose will be fabulous.

    Bookmark   July 14, 2014 at 12:10AM
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Annie Deighnaugh

Either the medium blue or the navy for the chair seats. I say no to the bird fabric as it's too close in scale to the drapes.

    Bookmark   July 14, 2014 at 8:11AM
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snookums- I would like to repaint the island because the color was never right to begin with.

So, what do you all think about this idea: I don't have any window treatment over my sink yet. I was thinking something along these lines in style

What if I snagged my white linen look curtains from another room and put them in here? Then I could have the medallion curtains hemmed and put them over the sink. Would that look better? I feel like I will always be fighting this kitchen... I probably went the wrong direction with the blues, but I don't want to waste what I've already purchased.

    Bookmark   July 14, 2014 at 4:29PM
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Holly- Kay

Sundance your blue idea, imo, is perfect. I love your medallion drapes they add pizazz to your pretty kitchen.

Just keep it simple. Paint your island the darkest blue in your medallion drapes. The chairs will look great in off white but I think I would paint them the same shade of navy as your island and I would look for a stripe fabric that incorporates the different blues and linen like color in your drapes.

If you paint the chairs off white go with predominantly blue stripes but if you paint them navy make sure there is a lot of off white or the linen color in the stripe. I am attempting to attach an article from Pinterest in simple design techniques for a room. You have already chosen your lead item being your beautiful drapes.

Here is a link that might be useful: Easy design formula

    Bookmark   July 14, 2014 at 6:07PM
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I'm the odd bird. I like the lighter blue fabric.

    Bookmark   July 14, 2014 at 6:08PM
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I would paint your chairs the same color as your trim.

Then paint the island either the same color as your trim or a much blacker-blue than your navy fabric. Find a blue paint that is spot on to the dark blue in your wall sign or the darkest blue in your curtain.

Then I would cover the chair cushions with a fabric similar to the understated stripe fabric found on these IKEA cushions.


You don't want to go too light on the background color of the fabric. It should have just enough contrast that the combo white paint and fabric doesn't look bland.

I would definitely shy away from a predominantly dark blue cushion. Blue fades so easily and your chairs are right near the window.

I love the curtains and the wall sign. I think you have done a great job thus far.

    Bookmark   July 14, 2014 at 8:27PM
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Sundance, please don't massacre your lively medallion drapes. The pattern is too large for short curtains, and look so pretty on your large window. Just take a calming breath. You don't have to make all your decisions in one day. Blue is a classic color in kitchens, and blue and white is beautiful. In deciding what color to paint the chairs and island, instead of colors, think of light and dark. Do you want a light and airy look, or darker, contrasting look? You have a nice window in the room, but would too much dark paint darken the room by day or night? Next think about subtle changes or more drastic changes. Think about longevity of design. Might you tire of a drastic change or fret over the exact color of navy paint? You may decide on contrast or calm by the feeling you are trying to achieve. No one should tell you what to do, this is your kitchen, after all. We can give you our opinions when you ask for them, as you have, but don't take them as The Thing That You Should Do. KWIM? Over all, have fun decorating your adorable kitchen. Oh, and take your time. Hang your bird fabric in the window for a few days, and see if it is cheerful. Keep the sample until you finish deciding. When gathered, the birds won't be so prominent and if it doesn't work so be it. Think about if painting your chairs creamy white would allow another change down the road, or if navy chairs would make your heart sing. If your heart isn't singing, let it rest. Just remember that when you ask a group of ladies for an opinion, you will get a bunch of different answers, which leads to frustration. You are the queen of the kitchen, hold your chin regally high and own it. ( : Smile : )

    Bookmark   July 14, 2014 at 9:09PM
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I really want to like the bird fabric best but ... the navy

    Bookmark   July 14, 2014 at 11:23PM
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Thank you all for your kind words! I tend to get a little wrapped up in the details. I come here to straighten out my thoughts. Even though everyone's opinions can sometimes get frustrating/confusing, it's still very helpful. You've all given me a lot to think about.

edeevee- the glazing sounds interesting. you would leave the island it is the color it is now?

    Bookmark   July 15, 2014 at 3:20PM
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sundance, yeah, I would. See that fabric choice up there ^ the striated one with the different blues that viola recommended? That's the effect I'd go for but remember ... with me and decorating? It's either brilliant or bust. Use caution.

    Bookmark   July 16, 2014 at 8:55AM
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Love the navy fabric for the chairs! Gorgeous!!!! Same white as trim for the chairs or distressed look. I think the island meeds to be blueish to bring the color to that side of the room. Maybe SW Rainstorm, Dark Knight, Seaworthy or Inkwell or BM amazon green or Navy Masterpiece. You can also use the bird fabric for placemats or to make cute wall art if you frame it.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2014 at 10:40AM
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