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If you've been shopping recently, you may have already noticed merchandise areas that are now dedicated to orange and black color schemes. Decorations, racks of fanciful costumes and bins of sugary candy are displayed for all to see. Not only do Americans love to welcome fall, but we also love to celebrate Halloween. In fact, each year we spend more and more on this fun holiday. In 2011, 70 percent of the shoppers in the United States spent more than $7 billion preparing for the festivities, and a significant portion of that amount went to purchasing traditional orange and black decorations.
Orange is the color of pumpkins, bonfires, candles and changing leaves, and it dominates this holiday. When Irish immigrants first introduced Halloween, they used potatoes and turnips. Americans, however, quickly switched to bigger fruit to carve and decorate. A plump pumpkin makes the perfect jack-o-lantern. Orange is recognized as a color of strength and endurance. It reflects both the hard work of the fall harvest and the beauty of nature’s fall décor.
Orange is also a great year-round decorating color. Like red, it is an instant, energizing attention-grabber, but it is friendlier and less aggressive than red. A peachy orange actually has a calming effect, and brownish orange presents a warm, earthy glow. Red-orange feels modern and sleek. It is a perfect offset for graphics and geometric patterns, chrome and leather furniture, and clean white walls. Add some yellow to orange, and it instantly becomes more rustic. Traditional or dark country furnishings are an excellent accompaniment.
For those who love to scrapbook, just about any season or any occasion is enough reason to do another photo book, and autumn is no exception. In fact, fall scrapbook shades offer some of the most interesting, vibrant colors to use as backgrounds and accessories for each memorable page. Think of lush red apples and the paper colors “Red Devil” and “Kisses” can bring your photo shoot to life. How about giant orange pumpkins nestled against bales of golden yellow straw? Even the rich taupe of “Carob” paper reminds one of overturned earth and country lanes.
There are several color methods for creating a unified fall scrapbook that will unfold its charming story from beginning to the very last page:
1. Consider the event. Autumn includes both Halloween and Thanksgiving celebrations. While orange and black own the former, the ruby reds, yellows, earthy browns, and deep greens of nature’s bountiful harvest are easy to capture in the latter. If a special birthday or anniversary is cause for commemoration, try matching your colors to the color scheme at the party, which should show up in many of the photos.
This year, the months of September, October and November will play host to almost one third of all the weddings held in 2014. Why the increase? It’s true that these months are generally freer from extreme temperatures and in many places, off-season rates are available, but one of the main attractions is the wonderful variety of fall wedding colors. As nature puts on her own annual fashion show, brides are realizing how easy it is to incorporate those same shades into a stunning wedding event.
For 2014, the top favorite fall wedding color is “Merlot,” a deep, romantic cranberry that works well with a variety of color combinations. For example, pair Merlot with Indigo Blue and a neutral white, gray or ivory for a powerful, sophisticated color experience. Team this same rich shade with an equally luxurious gold and complements of other warm, fall colors for a truly autumnal event. Turn up the romance with a delicate palette of Merlot, Blush (grayed-pink) and Ivory. Add some Victorian lace and soft lighting, and your fall wedding colors will be the perfect backdrop for this special occasion.
That same Merlot becomes elegant and sophisticated when contrasted with traditional wedding white or heirloom ivory. Delicate ribbons of Merlot can decorate the cake, tie napkins and place holders, or weave their way through green archways. Choose white calla lilies for the bridal bouquet and deep red flowers for the bridesmaids. Red votive candles will add a romantic touch, especially as they cast their rosy glow at evening receptions.
It’s back-to-school time, and putting together the right fall fashion statement is just as important for most students as it is for the rest of us. Your teen will probably have very definite ideas about what is “cool” to wear and what is not. Although high school trends are less dictated by the runway selections of last spring, they are still clearly identifiable. Fall 2014 will be about a “cozy and relaxed” approach to school colors and styles.
Expect to see purple in many shades including its cousins: purple-black, wine, violet and deep plum. Teen girls will be painting their nails, lining their eyes, and buying t-shirts, jeans and short skirts in these rich colors. Look for graphic plaids and dark floral patterns too, accompanied by lace, reworked denim and leather.
As a throw-back to the 90’s, a vintage floral dress with leather knee-high boots and a bulky cardigan is a great back-to-school ensemble. Turtlenecks are also making a comeback this fall. Taupe, silver, gray and dark teal will be popular colors. There’s even a place for Taylor Swift’s warm mustard yellow short skirt or pants. Plaids will be everywhere and not just standing alone. Find them matched to dark, graphic patterns and layered with contrasting plaids as well. Blanket coats will be a hit in plaid colors. Forever 21 offers a red and navy Plaid Peter Pan Collar Dress that would get an A in any classroom.
When it comes to painting the walls of your little girl’s bedroom, choosing the right color can make the difference between a room she loves and a room she hates. As the parent, it’s up to you to figure out the perfect color palette to bring smiles of joy and appreciation. Because this will be her personal space in which to do homework, play and dream, try to discover which colors most suit her personality.
Cheerful little girls usually love bright pinks, tangerines and cool blues. More introverted children will feel at ease surrounded by soft greens and gentle yellows. If your daughter is a serious soul, she may prefer chocolate brown or rich navy blue. Because the bedroom walls will be the backdrop for all the other decorations, get this part right and you are almost home free.
The most obvious way to discover your daughter’s favorite colors is simply to ask her or to show her a color wheel and let her choose from it. If there are no clear-cut winners, notice which crayons or markers she prefers to color with or which clothing choices she loves to wear. A bit of careful observation should provide clues to the perfect paint colors for your little princess.