Aging in Place, Health and Welfare, Interior Design, Senior Safety

Painting, Color, Lighting and Aging in Place

happy senior coupleSusie and John are in their late 60’s and their children have decided they need to paint the walls in their home.  Susie and John would like to go with something light and warm but not too warm.  The kids think they should paint something trendy and edgy.  They keep seeing dark walls in all the spec homes they tour and think that is what their parents should go with to stay up with the times.  What should Susie and John do?

They should go with their gut instincts and stick with lighter colors that are warm but not too yellow.  Why is that?  Because as we age, our eyes see color differently, we see less clearly and we need more light. The muscles in our eyes become weaker as we age.  Beginning in our forties, our eyes begin to change and not necessarily for the better.

The colors become more yellowed as we age.  What may seem red to one person could be very different from what the other person is seeing.  Don’t assume that because a certain color is “in” it is the best color for your space.  Older eyes may see colors that have more of a yellow cast to them.  Keep this in mind when choosing any colors.  00427796

Another important thing to remember is the need for more light as we age.  The eye requires more light to see things clearly.  Choose to spread lighting evenly throughout the room and prevent contrast in area lighting because it is harder for the eye to compensate if there are light and dark areas.

As we age, we tend to run a little colder too so choosing a warm color is a good choice.  Visually your eyes will signal to the mind that the space is warmer.  Think about the colors of the sun and warmth like yellows, oranges, reds to know what are warm colors.  Use these colors sparingly in your choices because too much will be overwhelming.  Always take the color samples home and place them in the location where you are thinking of painting that color.  What you see in the showroom or paint department will probably not look the same as your home.  

Yellowed colors need not be a detriment in the aging process, after all, your yellow and my yellow may not be the same.  Take care and if you have any questions or comments, please contact me. 

Alesha is the only Certified Aging in Place Specialist with experience in Residential and Commercial Interior Design in Southeast Idaho.  Alesha resides in Pocatello, Idaho. (208)-313-6414.


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