By the time February rolls around, I am fed up with the cold gray days, show-stopping snowstorms, and paths that I’ve dug so that the dogs can make their way outside with ease. Blooming gardens and warmer days are still months away, but the one saving grace of this mid-winter month is the ever-cheerful spirit of Valentine’s Day. I appreciate the simplicity of this holiday: It’s singularly intended to spread and show love. I also adore the colors, flavors, and designs that it comes with.
Valentine’s Day relieves me of the winter doldrums. Its intended meaning is expressed through our actions, words, and gestures to those who we love and appreciate. The intended visual of Valentine’s Day never disappoints. As we wander through shops we are embraced by red hearts, pink and red home accessories, and greeting cards that are scripted with charming sentiments. Then there are the cookies and chocolates that sweeten the day further. Maybe it’s because I’m miserable outside, or maybe because I love to share love. But all of the charm that comes from Valentine’s Day appeals to me. I cannot wait to cover my cards in heart-shaped doodles and stickers and send them to my friends and family.
Here, I put together a mood board inspired by Valentines Day. I pushed the envelope of the traditional, love-day palette to include sky blues, lemon yellow, and apple green. By expanding the palette with cooler tones, I balance the sweetness of the clashing reds and pinks to create a room scheme that is a harbinger of spring. One that includes a larger sampling of the color wheel. The inviting shades of pink, from raspberry to bubblegum, play a leading role. They are grounded, however, with a touch of black and a garden of flowers.
I started the mood board with an exquisite, floral-embroidered black. The tiny garden of flowers that it depicts inspired the saturated tones in the fabrics and finishes that I chose. I imagine a room with a deliciously inviting, strawberry-pink velvet sofa grounded by a faded pastel rug. Yellow armchairs with teal green piping would flank the sofa. It’s anything but monochromatic. Then to balance the brights on the upholstery, I’d appoint a white clamshell cocktail table and a gold console with a bit of shine to sit behind the sofa with a pair of handmade ceramic lamps from Hwang Bishop. An abstract artwork with plenty of pink by Allison James (available through Liz Lidgett Gallery) is the perfect complement to the furniture and rug. And just in case we forget this is a scheme inspired by Valentine’s Day, a pink lacquer mirror can be hung on the wall. I would apply the trim to a pair of pillows that would accent the sofa with happiness.
The spirit of Valentine’s Day always starts with pink, red, and a whole lot of chocolate. If you want to take it one step further, add green, yellow, and sky blue to the mix. I would love to sit in this imagined room with my loved ones while the snow is falling and I am feeling invigorated by the many colors and textures that surround me.