What’s Your Tone?

Everyone falls somewhere on the warm to cool tonality scale.  For most people with cool undertones in their skin, distinctly warm colors will make them look sallow, and for those with warm undertones, cool colors will make them look wan.   Some lucky people, I happen to be one of them, are close to the center of the warm/cool scale, so that both gold and silver jewelry, for example, are flattering for me.

All of us have reds, blues, yellows, greens, oranges and purples that work well for us.  The difficulty is in knowing exactly which red and which blue, etc.  Understanding your whether your tone is overall warm or cool is an important first step to determining which of each of the colors will work best for your wardrobe, your home, and yes, even your jewelry.

Can you tell which of these bedrooms would be the right one for you?


Grey bedroomLudlowe Master



Leo DesignSpecial Feature

No matter what your tone, you will find wonderful things at this featured shop.  Leo Design at 543 Hudson Street in New York City has something for everyone, and especially for that hard-to-shop-for man in your life.

They carry handsome gifts from shining crystal to burnished leather and they are one of my favorites in lower Manhattan.

It’s The Best Color!

A number of years ago, I remember reading somewhere that Ralph Lauren said his jeep was “the best color blue.”  It struck me that what he meant was, it could not be improved upon.  Whenever he sees it, no matter the time of day or the kind of light, to him it is just perfect.   Any change tinting its color even ever so slightly one way or the other would ruin it.

That is just how I feel about the color of my living room wallsLiving Room.  They are Benjamin Moore’s Powell Buff and they are absolutely perfect.  Originally introduced to it by my dear friend and mentor Alison Martin, I have also used it for clients in two New York City living rooms.  They agreed.  It is the best color!

I think the reason for this is that certain colors vibrate in such perfect alignment with your energy field that they actually feed your soul.   You will never tire of them and they will constantly inspire and delight you.  You can literally sit and just groove on them.

Trust me, I do it all the time.


Special Feature


Whitney ShopFor two generations, and over 60 years, The Whitney Shop has anchored Elm Street in New Canaan, CT.  It is the ideal place for the best gift, wedding present or treat for yourself.  I have shopped there all my life and I am delighted to have The Whitney Shop as this month’s feature destination.

Color Is Hard To Talk About

“Color is a basic human need… like fire and water. A raw material, indispensable to life.”

– Ferdinand Leger


It is October and color is everywhere.  So why is color so hard to talk about?red orchid

We have the conventionally agreed upon the word hue to refer to primary or secondary colors – red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple. We have chroma to describe a color’s brightness or dullness, and we have value as a reference to its lightness or darkness. In addition, I like to refer to a color’s tone as being warm to cool. But these don’t help us very much when we are trying to tell someone about a color.

We resort to naming colors by referring to them as other things – champagne, ivory, eggplant. What color is  ivory? It is thousands of colors. I have seen it from the palest off-white to the color of a brown paper bag. The word “ivory” seems to encompass a particular range that conjures the image of some sort of generic ivory and that is about the best we can do to pin it down.

Can you describe the color of the orchid, or the begonia?

Not easy, is it?IMG_0243

In The Secret Language of Color by Joann and Arielle Eckstut, from which the Leger quote is taken, they ask if you can name the color of your skin. Could you say it matches chocolate or a peach? Well, the answers are no you can’t, and no it doesn’t.

But you can see the colors in your skin, and you can see how your skin looks in relation to any other color that is next to it. Some enhance it and others detract. This is what I am interested in helping you to explore so that you can learn to use all the colors in your life to your best advantage, even though you still can’t talk about them very well.

Special Feature

Tom Granath of Granath Color Works is one of the most skillful painters, faux finishers and muralists that I know and I am pleased to have him as The Way of the Chosen Color’s first feature.   Go to his website at www.GranathColorWorks.com or follow him on Facebook and think of him for all of your restoration and painting needs in the greater NYC metropolitan area.