For Donna Frasca, It's All About Color—Delicious, Delectable Color
by Tammy Adamson-McMullen
Have you ever noticed that some colors just look, well, delicious? Donna Frasca, an interior designer, in Charlotte, N.C., certainly has and offers what she calls "Color Recipes©" for her clients. Check out her unique approach to interior design.
Think about your favorite dish: Is it salmon with pasta and a leafy salad? Or maybe roast turkey, creamy mashed potatoes, green beans and cranberries? These aren't only delicious foods but also delicious color schemes, maintains Donna Frasca, an interior designer in Charlotte, N.C., who has developed something she calls "Color Recipes©" to help clients select colors for their homes.
Each recipe has a color palette of light and dark colors that can be mixed and matched for any room in the house. With the system, "You can develop a color palette for your entire home," said Frasca, noting that hundreds of color combinations are possible from this tasty premise.
Frasca hit on Color Recipes while thumbing through home décor magazines. "I noticed how beautiful the photography was in the advertisements," she says on her blog website. "Ads for soups, pasta dishes, salads, desserts—just about anything you see in photographs has amazing colors." The photos looked so good that Frasca took her paint fan deck and started pulling out the colors she saw. "And voila! a perfect paint scheme got 'cooked up,' " as she describes it.
With 20 years of interior design experience, Frasca has helped clients select everything from paint, wallpaper and floor covering to furniture, backsplashes and draperies. However, at one point in her career, Frasca decided to zero in on her passion and became a certified color specialist. Frasca's color consulting business, Decorating by Donna, celebrated its grand opening in 2007 and has been going strong ever since.
Many clients hear about Frasca and her Color Recipes by word of mouth, through her social networking sites or via her website which contains a plethora of color tips and information. Browsers can find out how to choose colors that coordinate with granite, for example, or enter into an online discussion about why people tend to choose more subdued color as they age. The exposure has netted clients from around the world, including an area-rug manufacturer in Dubai, which recently tapped Frasca to help develop palettes for rugs that would be suitable in U.S. homes.
Frasca also was chosen by HGTV to appear on an episode of "Bang for your Buck" (season No. 5) but was unable to oblige because the proposed schedule was too tight. However, Frasca ended up pitching her Color Recipes to HGTV in the hopes that the television network might be able to use them in some way.
Frasca's color focus has proven especially lucrative in the Charlotte area, where she has become known for solving difficult design challenges, especially those involving open floor plans. "One of my clients in the Weddington area has a typical open-floor plan. You are able to see five rooms at the same time from standing in front of her fireplace. Some of the rooms are on the first level; others can been seen right up to the second floor. That's a lot of rooms to consider!" Frasca said.
Open floor plans are ideally suited for Frasca's Color Recipes, by the way, which include lighter colors designated for foyers and hallways, darker colors for accent walls, and so on. "It's really a simple and foolproof way to choose color;" Frasca stated.
Whatever the color challenge, Frasca added that it's imperative for consumers to call a certified color specialist to help. "When you hire a certified color specialist, you are paying for years of education and expertise," she said. "It's a wise choice to have a professional develop the right color palette for your home, the first time. It's really a good investment."
Donna Frasca's pick for trending home decorating colors: Look to a sushi bar for inspiration, with the oranges and reds of salmon, tuna and fresh ginger as well as the greens found in cucumbers and wasabi.