Colour File interview: Kasie Barton

Kasie Barton is a colour tour de force. DIYer extraordinaire and stylish founder of the For The Love Of Colour blog. She has made it her mission to show how you can get more colour into your life in an easy, fun and affordable way (she recently took part in the @ebay_uk Fill Your Cart With Colour campaign. Here, Kasie tells us what colour means to her, from her love of neon pink (when I see it I automatically think of Kasie) to her unexpected car colour…

Martha: Can you describe your first colour memory?
Kasie: Although not technically a colour, this childhood memory does relate to colour and conjures up all kinds of wondering feelings when I think back to it. At that is the memory of glitter. It’s still my favorite word to say. ‘Glitter’. I feel like my whole childhood was full of glitter. In the arts and crafts box, covering the stickers in my stickerbook collection, coating the Christmas tree costume my mum made me for my first nativity play… glitter was everywhere and was always used during really happy, creative moments. The colours were magical and I actively try to recreate that magical, wholesome and shimmering feel through colour in my house today. Particularly as it’s a house full of children. I joke that my home looks like an explosion of My Little Pony and Troll dolls – but I wouldn’t have it any other way!

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Martha: Do you have a favourite colour and has this changed over the years?
Kasie: Yes, my favourite colour is neon pink. But I actually can’t let pink hang out for very long without it’s best buddy, sunshine yellow. They just don’t work without each other in my mind. And just like best mates in real life, they bring out the best in each other. Together, they remind me of those gorgeous fruit salad penny chews I used to buy as a kid.

AB9476F4-7337-4B81-9BD4-B6E717023A79Martha: What are your favourite colourful objects and why?
Kasie: I currently have a huge things for statement walls. This has been exacerbated by their immense popularity on Instagram with people taking selfies in front of beautifully-coloured backdrops. But even before then, I have always loved a statement wall – ideally with a beautifully coloured pattern or picture stenciled or hand painted across it. I recently painted an ombre wall in our bedroom behind the bed, merging the pastel colours – pink, green and grey. It looks like a sunset behind our heads and sets the cool and relaxed tone of the bedroom. I also love the Scandi influenced pink candystripes I painted on a small section of our landing wall, set-off my the sunshine yellow door of our airing cupboard beside it.

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Martha: How does colour make you feel? To what extent do you use it in your work or personal life to influence your moods or those around you?
Kasie: I don’t work without colour in my life. To me, it’s like watching the TV with the volume down. You just don’t get a full and rounded experience without different colours influencing you at different times. They don’t have to be in-your-face bright. White can have a profound affect on me too. It’s important to consider what colours drive you in what ways, and then work from there. Everyone is different – and thank goodness for that!

Martha: Do you have a colour you could happily do without?
Kasie: Wellllll…. I’m not a massive fan of grey on it’s own. If its sitting beside another colour it can do wonders to balance or anchor a space, but on it’s own? I could quite happily leave it behind.

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Martha: How does colour get involved in your day-to-day life? Does it permeate your life from the moment you wake to the moment you go to sleep?
Kasie: Absolutely. From the moment I get up and open my wardrobe door I’m thinking about what colour I am feeling that day. Yesterday, I bought the most beautiful pink jumper from Top Shop that actually made me make a kind of squeally noise when I saw it across the shop floor. I knew I had to buy it there and then. I’d say the only area of my life that isn’t really influenced by colour is my car. It’s black. How boring is that?!!!

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Martha: How do you choose colours for your work and where does your colour inspiration come from?
Kasie: My home, office and brand identity follow a certain colour palette of bright white, sunshine yellow and candy pink, so most of my projects, pictures and styling decisions are influenced by this. For other inspiration I will often turn to my favourite blogs, vlogs and social media platforms like IG and pinterest. My favourite bloggers at the moment are A Beautiful Mess, Mr Kate and Bright Bazarre. They’re so brave with styling. I’d rather try something new and get it wrong than continue doing the same thing day in day out. I love the quote: ‘I never lose. I either win, or I learn something’. I’m always telling my children: ‘Be curious. Ask questions’. And the same should apply to us adults.

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Martha: Do you think there are rules about colour or are rules made to be broken?
Kasie: I think different rules apply to different spaces and scenarios. I would say there are definitely more successful ways of using colours together than others. But the success of colour combinations will depend so heavily on what else is surrounding and influencing a space.

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Martha: Do you have a colour story or anecdote?
Kasie: I’ve told a couple of stories recently on Instagram about when I started seeing colour within the home quite differently. One was when I stumbled across the amazing Zilverblauw online and her incredible use of pastels within the home. Beautiful and brave use of colours in a way I have never seen before. It made me change how I wanted my house to look, and also how I wanted my house to make me feel when I walked into it. She has influenced me in so many ways. The other story was the first time I saw a Land of Nod Jenny Lind-style bed online, painted sunshine yellow. I started looking at furniture differently from that point, realizing that it doesn’t have to be the walls or floors that ‘sing’ in a room. Sometimes the structures of a space need to take a back seat and let the accessories sing. It was the moment I fell in love with painting and upcycling furniture, which has grown into a love of painting and restoring floors, stairs, walls and doors. I’m always looking for new ways to paint things that you wouldn’t expect to see painted.

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Martha: Do you have any colour ‘secrets’, maybe something nobody knows about you in relation to colour, or has colour ever got you into trouble?
Kasie: Thanks to Instagram, I’m not sure there are any colour secrets about me these days. I tend to display it all loud and proud. I suppose people do get surprised when I tell them that one of my favourite colours is white. Yes I love bright colours, but they can only be made to really sing when offset against a backdrop of clean white.

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Martha: If you could give people advice about using colour, what would it be?
Kasie: Don’t be tempted to fill a space with loads of colour and assume it will work. Using colour well takes quite a bit of planning and consideration. I try not to use more than four colours in a single space (a part from the obvious bits and bobs here and there). When using pale pastel colours, remember you will need to anchor the space in some way. Consider punctuating with pops of black or dark grey, such as a couple of scatter cushions, some picture frames or some black trim on a pale rug. If it’s an outfit then you might want to anchor with a darker pair of shoes or a black belt.

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Martha: If you had a colour named in your honour, what colour would it be & why?
Kasie: It would be bright sunshine yellow and I would love it to be called ‘Smile More’.

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