Color My Home

colors at homeYour Colors At Home
Decorating with Your Seasonal Colors
Smith and Gilbert

In the 1980s, having your colors done, was quite the thing. I remember quite a few books and tv talk show segments devoted to figuring out color palettes that worked for your skin tones. People were either a Summer, Winter, Fall, or Spring. I remember trying to figure this out for myself and coming up with nothing. I still don’t really understand how this works.

This book takes this process to decorating your home. Do rooms exude a certain color preference or is just a palette of colors to try. Aside from the Spring room which looks like an Easter basket exploded, the other examples aren’t too bad.

Even though I haven’t heard this discussed since the late 1980s, it’s possible there might be some interest in the topic. This book can probably retire and the seasonal color folks of today would probably head right to the Internet.


back cover spring pallette winter Fall spring


    1. As I recall the color consultants would usually lump black/hispanic/south american/middle eastern women into the “winter” category. but i was wise to that and I knew all the black people in my family didn’t match. i was also a sucker for beauty and fashion books in high school. Eventually I did see a book representing black women as different “seasons.” i dont recall if it was that was a Color Me Beautiful book or not. The general info for choosing makeup colors was sound, but not for your living room.

  1. I’m a Winter. According to this dumb book, I should live in something that looks like a hotel. No thank you.

    At least I’m not a Spring. Then I’d be stuck in living in something that looks like a Beatrix Potter book threw up in it.

  2. Hmmm…based on skin tones? All of the women on the back cover look pretty pale to me. How does this work for non-white people? Or were they not the target audience?

  3. There were many odd things going around at that time. SIL was heavily into the blood type diet and Mr. Thipu would not wear a green tie or a dark raincoat because ‘Dress For Success’ said they were lower class. The very idea of decorating your home to comply with arbitrary decisions by what would now be called influencers strikes me as nuts.

    MIL thought that I dressed in too ‘modern’ (read colorful) a fashion and decided that I was a ‘Winter Person’. In her view, that meant that my
    strong colors should be navy blue and hunter green. I should wear lots and lots of white and accent my outfits with baby blue or mint green. Under no circumstances should I wear any warm colors including brown shoes. Boring!!
    For the record I have auburn hair and green eyes. I am also a Leo. I
    have no idea what made MIL decide I was a ‘Winter Person’.

    Books like this may be interesting as documenting trends of the 1980s but few modern public libraries have space for them.

  4. I remember being a Girl Guide in about 1993 and some woman came in to tell us our ‘season’, which was very useful to a bunch of nine and ten year olds. I suspect our Guider wanted a consultation and thought that was a back door way to get it!

  5. Seasonal colors are back! I have seen chatter about it in online beauty blogs and the like in the last couple years. I even saw an online store a few months ago where you could shop by what season you are. I am definitely not plugged in enough to tell whether this is serious or an ironic 80s throwback for those (like me) too young to remember this book.

    Not sure what season I am … it doesn’t help that their four examples have such similar skin tones.

  6. Our library still has “Color me beautiful” and Color me beautiful makeup book” by Carole Jackson, and they’ve survived 2 major weedings because they still circulate regularly.

  7. I remember this crap being all the rage when I was in high school in the 80s. A lot of my mom’s friends had parties where a consultant would come over and “do your colors.” I think maybe there was a whole MLM based on color consulting?

    I never could figure out what season I was supposed to be, other than “not a winter.” For what it’s worth, I think I would look terrible in any of the colors the women on the back cover are sporting. And the “summer” color palette. Having lived through the 80s, I avoid any color with “dusty” in the name like the plague.

  8. I remember this trend! Stylists would hold up different color scarves under your face to see which looked best with your coloring. It all seems very arbitrary now. I never heard of it being applied to entire rooms. I do like the autumn room.

  9. I had my colors “done” in 1982. The exercise was useful. I don’t follow the rules rigidly, but I am still aware of the guidelines. The problem with using the colors for home decor is that an entire family may be all the seasons! What if you’re a summer and your spouse is an autumn? You get the living room and s/he gets the bathroom?

  10. My older sister was really hip with this and she sucked my mum in. I was a goth girl so there was no color palette for me.
    I know my mum had some of these books in her collection. Thankfully, she’s gotten rid of all of them only to be replaced with stupid “memory” book books.

  11. That “Winter” room is worse than the puff paragraph describing it, which is mostly because of the mirror, the excess of furniture (how do you get to the couch to sit on it?) and the bad plants. Shouldn’t Dave Bowman be watching TV on that cieling?

  12. Baby blue for adults? Bleech! Some colors should not be worn by anyone – including baby blue once you’re over age six.

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