With health and wellness in mind, PPG’s 2021 Palette of the Year includes a trio of softened hues — Big Cypress, a ginger with persimmon undertones, Misty Aqua, a cerulean blue, and Transcend, an earthy oatmeal.
There is significant research behind the colors that affect mood, and holistic interior designers like Gala Magriñá are experts at applying this research to the home to achieve a more mindful space. As we’re spending more time than ever in our homes, and require more versatile spaces, we spoke with Magriñá on how this color palette can serve our needs in 2021.
ASPIRE: As a holistic designer, why do you think it’s so important to design with health/wellness in mind?
Gala Magriñá: Our homes, communities, and surrounding environment directly affect our daily motivations, behaviors, and lifestyle, and these factors determine 80-90% of our health outcomes. As a result, I think that we should be incorporating our spaces into our daily wellness practice the way we do with diet and exercise.
ASPIRE: How does color fit into that approach – how do different colors affect our moods?
Gala: Colors have a huge impact on us. We not only take them in through our eyes, but also through our skin. That means we even take in color while we sleep! Brighter colors like yellows, reds, and oranges are considered more “yang” and have a more energetic, masculine, vibrant energy. These are great for areas you want to be productive and alert in, like your home office or a breakfast nook. More muted and tonal colors are considered to be more “yin,” which is associated with the feminine and gives off a more tranquil energy. Furthermore, darker colors like blacks and deep browns can make us somber and introspective. So we can really get intentional with color and use it to maximize the function we want a particular room to have.
ASPIRE: What spaces do you recommend this palette be used in? If you were to select one room that you think each color makes the most sense in, what would they be and why?
Gala: Transcend and Big Cypress feel more yin and Earthy to me, while Misty Aqua has more of a yang quality. So for Transcend and Big Cypress, I would use them as an accent wall in a living room or bedroom where I want to ground and decompress from my day. I’d use Misty Aqua in a breakfast nook, home office, or bathroom—it feels like a hopeful and fresh color that energizes. I’d love to start my day surrounded by it!
ASPIRE: What other colors/materials would you pair this palette with?
Gala: I would pair Transcend and Big Cypress with a soothing cream color that errs more on the white side than yellow and go more of a tonal route. They would also pair nicely with a gold color or tone. As Misty Aqua which is more poppy and vibrant, it would pair nicely with a bright white.
ASPIRE: In terms of longevity, do you see this palette as being relevant beyond 2021? Or do you expect more dramatic palettes to take over in a post-pandemic world?
Gala: I think Transcend and Big Cypress feel like they have more longevity than Misty Aqua. Perhaps that’s because they’re more tonal colors and less dramatic. They feel very earthy and warm and I think in general those are qualities we will always be attracted to.
ASPIRE: What other style trends do you expect to see in 2021?
Gala: I think that really depends on where we’re at on a global level and what the collective energy dictates. I would say that right now, we’re going through some difficult times, so we’re seeing grounding, warm, and soothing colors. At the same time, in fashion and in design, we’re also seeing brown take center stage, which is darker and a little more somber (while still being earthy). I think this is a true reflection of what is going on in the world. So for 2021, there are really two different ways to look at it – a darker color that reflects the mood of the time, or a brighter color to uplift us if things are still not on the up and up. What would be truly amazing, though, would be a bright, vibrant color to celebrate overcoming COVID, racism, injustice, and all of the other things we are battling right now. That’s what I would love to see for 2021’s color of the year.
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