Colour Inspirations – Nyla Free Designs

By: Nyla Free Designs  09-12-2011

Deep down at the bottom of the sea exists a magical life and uncharted territory. A few years ago, while in Hawaii we took a submarine journey to 110 ft below sea level. Looking through the porthole of the submarine we discovered the dark and mysterious ocean world full of life and amazing creatures. I managed to capture this image of fish swimming alongside us and simply love the colours and movement that it offers. Come along as we create a dramatic room, I was thinking a small sitting room, in a palette of shades of blue.

1. Looking for more ‘blue’ inspiration? Pick up a copy of by House Beautiful 2. Accent with shades of celadon and pale green with this from Style Hive 3. I adore this French Beauville Textile that was transformed into a pillow found via 4. The translucency of the from Kartell is a perfect play on light and touch of modern via Hive Modern 5. The combination of blues, patchwork wave pattern and traditional frame has me swooning over this , a showstopper for the sitting room 6. Include an in varying shades of blue and you’ve created an ideal base to offset your other blue elements. 7. Why not create a dramatic back drop by painting the walls ? 8. Additional elements of pale grey/sage offset the blue with these from Bungalow Five. 9. The sheen on the from Mitchell Gold and Bob Williams is lovely, adding a touch of glamour 10. The , also from Mitchell Gold and Bob Williams adds another touch of femininity but also handsome details with tufting and turned legs. Two of these and you’ve completed your conversation area in the sitting room.

I hope this has inspired you to add a little moody blue to your room!

Each day I stepped outside our condo while on summer vacation in Vernon, British Columbia and saw these rocks. Now, most would walk right past, not giving them a second glance but I was intrigued by the colours that were found within. So simple and subtle. What a beautiful colour story! I imagined taking these natural rocks and transforming them into a sophisticated living room. Such a natural looking colour palette that infuses on trend colours also offering longevity and timeless appeal. What do you think?

1. This from dresses a wonderfully curved 2. sofa from (image via ). Elegant lamp from that stand tall and proud. 3. Love the introduction of this from reflecting a reverse rock pattern. 5. Wall colour in Grant Beige HC-83 (image via ) 6. Flank the sofa with functional and stylish from 7. The serene colours of artwork would be striking above the sofa 8. Complete the conversation grouping with two chairs in 100% linen fabric.

Who knew a pile of rocks could be so pretty?!

1. Textured vases 2. Natural tree-stump side table from 3. Perfect for drapery or bedding Spa Ikat fabric in orange from 4. Pretty Sakura sheet set from 5. Soft & Serene wall colour Fowler Pink #39 6. Why not paint your ceiling Picture Gallery Red #42 Farrow & Ball *images via 7. Add a touch of modern with this Missoni throw from 8. The Feye stained ivory crackle porcelain lamp from adds a soft, feminine feel. 9. Add warmth and texture with the shutter style Alden Reclaimed Wood Headboard from .

Tell me, what do you think of this combination? It’s certainly different, but that’s what I’m here for, to show ways of combining unexpected colours and textures in a way that offers ideas to bring the inspiration into your own home.

I hope you enjoy reading this new series as much as I do putting it together.


Image: 2nd floor (if my memory serves me correctly) elevator wall at ABC Carpet & Home in New York City.

You’re either one of two people. You put on your boots, kick your heels and crank the country tunes, or you flee the city. As it happens we are not typically in Calgary during Stampede. Not because we make a run for it but it’s just the way our summer vacations have worked out. This year however we are here and I’m not quite sure what do with myself. I don’t own cowboy boots or any stylish country western items so I’m taking some tips from probably the coolest country dude out there, Ralph Lauren. I’m not terribly interested in the red paisley bandanas and cowboy hats so I’m on the hunt for some inspiration. I am loving the colours in these photos which means some shopping may be in order to pull together the right designer duds. Any excuse right?

Happy Stampede to my Calgary friends and a special ‘Howdy’ to those visiting. YeeHAW!

Image sources: , ,

Inspired by a new pair of shoes and our bright and beautiful Alberta blue skies, I can’t help but be drawn to the intensity of this classic colour showing up in everything from fashion to home accessories. If you’re shy of colour, blue is an easy one to add and most would gravitate towards the lighter shades. This year, take it up a notch by adding cobalt. It’s like a breath of fresh air.

1. 2. 3. BM Paddington Blue 791 via 4. Marimekko via 5. 6. 7. Prada via 8. 9.

Yes, there’s still snow on the ground here in Calgary. As a matter of fact we’ve been getting a light dusting of the white stuff over the last few days and yet, somehow I’m ok with it. There’s something comforting in knowing that spring has officially arrived. Snow or not it can only get better from here, right? It’s Spring!

Soon we’ll start to see life again. Trees will bud, flowers will bloom and the grass will turn green. Ahhhh…I’m even excited about the rain that will wash all of winter’s dirt away. Until then, let’s dream about a pretty Spring colour scheme and imagine ourselves sitting at this little bistro table enjoying our morning coffee, shall we?

Image sources: , , , , .

Inspired by a visit to the Viceroy in Santa Monica and a new little number I picked up at Bloomingdales I thought I’d put together a style board on the colour jade. It’s fresh, lively and a perfect infusion of colour after a loooooooong winter.

1. . No longer available in this colour combination, but with a little creativity you could re-produce this look. 2. 2043-20, image via , originally from . 3. Sliced Shirt Dress in Jade by Diane Von Furstenburg, available at 4. True Imperial Jadeite. Image source: 5. Chevron accent pillow in green and grey 6. Viceroy Santa Monica. Design by . Image via .

Other products and services from Nyla Free Designs


Colour trends – Nyla Free Designs

They are one of my favorite pieces in my home ~ an abstract representation of ‘Jacks’, a game I played by the hour when I was young, sitting on the floor of my Grandma’s kitchen while she cooked or baked. Please call the respective stores for more information on stock or purchasing. I’ve had turquoise in my decor for several years now. Wall colour with shades of turquoise bedding.


Colour Schemes – Nyla Free Designs

Sources:,, Living Room care of Domino Magazine, Paint colours clockwise from top right:Benjamin Moore Gold Rush 2166-10, Benjamin Moore Chocolate Truffle 2096-20, Benjamin Moore Bittersweet Chocolate 2114-10, Benjamin Moore Camel Back 1103, Benjamin Moore Mink 2112-10, Sherwin Williams Oceanside SW6496.


Cool Finds – Nyla Free Designs

I was shopping yesterday at Chapters and found these adorable colouring books that I wanted to share with you. From Restoration Hardware for a mantle, door frame, dining table center piece…I could go on 4. Nyla Free Designs is not responsible for discrepancies in prices or descriptions. A from Crate and Barrel will dress up any chair, sofa or bed for the holidays 7. Bring nature inside with birch branches a rustic approach to decorating.


Before & After – Nyla Free Designs

After moving into a previously owned home typically there are grand plans to make it your own, however it’s common to settle in and watch years go by before a renovation occurs. Our goal was to surround the room with books creating floor to ceiling, wall to wall bookshelves housing an eclectic collection of inspiring reading material.


Behind the Scenes – Nyla Free Designs

Our goal is to bring your home to life by revealing your style and infusing unexpected elements of design and detail. For me, I need to digest, soak in all I’ve learned and experienced, and that can take some time. Nyla Free Designs is a full service Calgary Interior Design studio. Nyla Free Designs also offers an online design service through.


Artists – Nyla Free Designs

Focused on unique, vintage and salvage findings in an effort to create one of a kind furniture, lighting and art, each piece is a conversation starter in it’s own way. The past is a deeply personal and resonant place for people and I am always looking at ways to capture these feelings on canvas; immortalize them and make them big.


A Day in the Life – Nyla Free Designs

Install days are filled with the work of unpacking boxes, placing furniture and accessories, hanging art and drapery, arranging flowers, and cleaning up the mess you just made all before the client arrives home for the reveal. If you’re wondering what I’ve been up to, I spent all last week, along with a team of people transforming a historic Calgary home for the house tour that happened this past weekend.