Interview with Irum Farhat, Head of Communications – Benjamin Moore
Benjamin Moore is North America’s favorite paint, color, and coatings brand. A leading manufacturer of premium quality residential and commercial coatings, Benjamin Moore maintains a relentless commitment to innovation and sustainable manufacturing practices. Irum Farhat, Interior Design Expert and Head of Communications at Benjamin Moore Middle East, talks to us about the color and interior trends of the year 2019, advice us on how to create a soothing and inviting living space and declutter our surroundings and our lives.
Q1: Which interiors trends are you excited about for 2019?
Irum Farhat: I am thrilled about Benjamin Moore Color of the Year 2019 Metropolitan AF-690, a stylish gray with cool undertones. From scarlet to amethyst to sapphire, the gray paint colors can easily be paired with almost any hue and provide the revitalizing or soothing atmosphere. Equal parts stylish and sensible, gray is a design favorite for interior walls and home exteriors alike that can be dressed up or down.
Some interior design experts also said that 2019 will be a year for the returning of mid-century style, the round shapes are the big news. Curvy tiles, sofas or round tables – dining tables, side tables or coffee table – the circular shape is really an interior design trend to follow and gives a feminine vibe to the furniture. Also could mean that people are looking for relaxing and inviting rooms.
Q2: Which colors would you suggest for a positive environment?
Irum Farhat: The choice of color is very subjective and depends on the mood you want to create in your chosen room or project.
Pales– Their light, airy qualities make pale hues feel uplifting. Pale colors like dusty lavender, ballet pink, and sky blue are comfortable and easy to live with. They feel positive and encourage expression while enhancing other colors
Neutrals– It’s no surprise that earthy, nuanced colors keep you grounded. Neutrals go beyond gray and brown into earthy hues like slate, clay, sand, and ochre. Colors in this family can be warm or cool but are always reliable and levelheaded. And because they transition beautifully with shifting light, they’re a good choice for rooms used throughout the day
Whites– Pure and pristine, these timeless colors offer a blank canvas to express your style. Whites can easily feel contemporary, classic or anywhere in between. It’s an honest, harmonious family of colors and a great place to start, as they complement any style. You might call it a perfect backdrop for the life happening around it.
Deeps– Bring drama to a room with colors that are rich and mysterious. Violet, onyx, sapphire, and ruby—even the names evoke something dramatic. Deep colors dissolve boundaries and create depth. They are the opposite of understatement and can fill a room with energy, creativity, and confidence.
Q3: How do colors affect a person’s mood?
Irum Farhat: To understand the color’s emotional impact, first we should understand that color is a communication tool and can be used to not only affect the senses but even influence physiological reactions.
The artist Pablo Picasso once remarked, ‘Colors, like features, follow the changes of the emotions.” Perception of colors is subjective. Warm Colors like red, orange and yellow evoke emotions like warmth, comfort in some whereas feelings of anger and hostility in others. Cool colors like blue, purple and green are often perceived as calm but can also evoke feelings such as sadness.
Q4: What about the work environment – what small changes can we make to improve our desk space?
Irum Farhat: I believe that plants are an easy way to beautify your desk and improve your workplace air quality. Research shows that employees in workspaces with plants are more productive. Also, sunlight is really important and it’s not just for plants since research suggests that workers with better window views perform well.
Additionally, according to science shades of blue stimulate the mind, yellow hues inspire creativity and green induces feelings of relaxation. You need to identify colors that you find personally stimulating and incorporate them wherever you can.
Q5: What do you think is the most challenging about home decorating?
Irum Farhat: I think the most challenging part is to declutter since some people normally have too many items, pictures and even furniture pieces that make a room feel smaller. Clean out what’s unnecessary and donate, throw out or store it in a box or bin somewhere out of sight. Keep bookshelves and surfaces clutter-free and use only essential furniture pieces in the room.