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Paint Color Tips

Color makes more than a fashion statement

Think blue for the new millennium.

Every year, Color Marketing Group, an Alexandria, Va., international, not-for-profit organization, forecasts the colors that will be introduced in products two years in the future.

Forecasters are color and design experts from industries that use color to sell products. These experts brainstorm with others in their industries about events (a presidential election), demographics such as the influx of Latino and Asian immigrants and Baby Boomers reaching middle age, the 2000 Olympics and intuitions that make them believe certain hues will be hot in two years.

Christine Dickey, a member who represents Toyota Motor Sales, USA, predicts colors in the first couple of years of the new millennium will be influenced by people's desire for authenticity and heritage. "This trend is led by Generations X & Y, but is quickly being adopted by Baby Boomers seeking a slower pace of life filled with more tradition and spirituality," she says.

These color theorists say blue will be the dominant color for the first half of the decade, with a variety of blues emerging in product categories from automobiles to house paint. Those shades will be supported by an array of neutral colors in cool and warm gray, clay, taupe and pale brown. Color forecasters also predict a new wave of soft pale colors led by aqua and true lavender, representing consumers' desire for serenity in their environments. For those of us in need of a little energy, color experts offer spicy oranges, reds and gold browns from Morocco and Australia.

New colors first appear in fashion, then in home furnishings, and finally in exterior building materials. While fashion colors change with the seasons, building products are replaced by homeowners far less frequently, so they change color more slowly. Roofing, for instance, changes colors only once every 10 years, while interior colors shift every six to eight years.

How do these predictions affect home remodelers? Color experts say paying attention will keep your decor
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