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Neutral colors, bold hues and wood floors create successful combos

March 21, 2014

Hardwood FlooringHomeowners may no longer be afraid to take a chance on strong colors for their homes, but that doesn't mean neutrals have gone the way of the dinosaur. As with other classic decor, including the wood floors in Anderson's Urban Loft collection, neutral colors always have a place in home design, often alongside bold hues.

According to House Beautiful, decorators say that metallic accents, navy and other shades of blue are colors that stand out this year. Although many view gray as the new beige, designers note that various shades of off-white and sandy tones continue to be popular.

Once gray became a favorite neutral in wall color, new variations of reds and pinks began to emerge as natural complements that often give casual, relaxed feeling to a room. They're especially effective in spaces that get lots of natural light.

"There's also a trend towards subtle glamour - neutral palettes with dazzling details," Jase Frederick, communications director for the Illinois' American Society of Interior Designers, told CBS News.

Hardwood flooring and rich colors have been a good combination for generations. Even homes from colonial days complemented plank floors with red, mustard yellow, blue and verdant green, which were popular colors in early America.

Color harmony
HGTV designer Candace Olson added one caution to home decorators - choose one color category, such as jewel tones or light pastels for a good flow from room to room. Otherwise, the overall decorating scheme can end up as what she called "a patchwork of opposite looks."

Don't overlook rooms that are small or have a utilitarian purpose. Home offices, bathrooms and laundry areas can be turned from drab functional places to those with style all their own. Once new colors are introduced, homeowners may want to upgrade further with new shelving and a few accessories.

For those who are stepping gingerly around using bold tones, the experts suggest trying them in unexpected places - the inside of a bookcase or on the rear wall of glass-door kitchen cabinets.

Colors like wine, a deep purple with undertones of dark brown, for instance, are a great accompaniment to wood furnishings. The same can be said of deep reds, bright orange, periwinkle and violet blues. Yellow is a good complement to green, gold and camel brown.

Soft furnishings such as slipcovers and window treatments provide other ways for homeowners to introduce a bright color if they don't want to commit to one on their walls.