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True Colour Expert

Undertones in Fabrics & Countertops

By 03/27/2012February 21st, 201724 Comments

The system that I’ve created for distinguishing undertones is still evolving and each workshop I get better at teaching it to the designers, decorators and design enthusiasts who attend.

For example, I have been trying to figure out an efficient way to work with fabrics, tiles and countertop samples to make it really experiential for participants. They already work with real paint chips on the first day and compare, compare, compare. Comparing colour is what I do with my clients throughout the entire consultation so that they understand why I’m recommending certain colours and it’s the first thing I teach to everyone.

Then I had the brilliant idea of taking all the categories of undertones that I teach via paint chips and also selecting them in fabrics as well.

Robert Allen generously provided me with samples for every participant along with these wonderful bags that I custom ordered to go with my yellow sofa (kidding : )  I picked basic upholstery fabrics I use all the time because when I was starting out as a new designer, I would have loved to have those in advance of specifying them! There’s Irene in the back!

Elizabeth and Andrea became instant pals. In fact the whole group connected right away, it was a really fun three days! And the mentoring and connections continue in our very active private facebook page. People are constantly posting projects, getting feedback and support from all the other True Colour Experts.

On the second day of the workshop everyone always reports that they now have trouble being in their hotel rooms because they could see what was wrong with the undertones starting from the elevators, haha.

Caesarstone shipped us countertop samples and I let everyone know one of my insider tips–if anyone consults with me on quartz countertops, most of the time we end up with this one or something in that realm.

The Urban Barn provided warm and fuzzy throws for everyone on the third day! Perfect for the plane on the way home! Thanks so much.

Tricia Vanier was my only participant from Vancouver! I tried to distract her so I could steal her necklace but it didn’t work, haha.

I would like to give a shout to Bea O’Driscoll who runs Choices Interior Decorating School in Vancouver where we hold the workshops! It’s a great space with lots of natural light.

Here’s our fabulous group! My next True Colour Expert Workshop is summer in Toronto (location to be confirmed but it will be in the city) June 6, 7, & 8, 2012. Fall in Vancouver will be October 3, 4 & 5th. Register now.

“I got so much more out of these three days than I expected. Thanks so much! Can’t wait to put my new knowledge to the test!” Andrea May,  Slow Luxe Life

Related posts:

Comparing Colour is Everything

Colour is Context

The Gift of a Trained Eye

Need help with your colours? Download my eBook, It’s All in the Undertones.

If you would like your home to fill you with happiness every time you walk in, contact me.

To make sure the undertones in your home are right, get some large samples!

If you would like to learn to how choose the right colours for your home or for your clients, become a True Colour Expert.

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  • plantingoaks says:

    Has anyone else been seeing super tall and narrow stretched out pictures in the past few entries?

    • susette says:

      yes–i thought it was just me. hopefully, maria can get that fixed… 🙂

      • Maria Killam says:

        I need to do some updates to WordPress which I am concerned could mess up my site so I have sent a note to my developer to get it done, hopefully that will fix the problem. Thanks for letting me know, I don’t see it at my end. Maria

    • carol ann says:

      I thought it was my computer… go to know it’s not!

      • Tina says:

        lol……………..I thought it was MY computer showing Maria’s pictures tall and skinny. I spent an hour yesterday “messing” with the settings on my computer trying to fix it. It has been happening alot lately…and I know it’s caused me to missed some good points/info… 🙁

    • D. D. says:

      YES — all of the photos are distorted in a LONG VERTICAL WAY. An oops — of course.
      Maria’s web site is always 100% glorious, so this must be the workings of the computer ghosts.
      I’m sure the site will shed the skinny look and it will be back to normal real soon.
      We don’t want to be perfect anyway — just too boring!

  • 1. Super tall and narrow stretched out pictures? Yay! I’m going to be a super model after all!!!
    2. If you are even considering this workshop, go, go, go! A great chance to broaden your knowledge of color, learn more effective ways to communicate with clients and connect with new design friends. Can’t say enough good things about the way Maria and Irene plan and run these three days!
    3. Reunion in La Jolla?

  • Cathy says:

    Do you ever do workshops in the US? or Webinars?

  • Bert says:

    Yes, I also have super long stretched out pictures. I thought it was just my computer, too. Been happening a lot lately. Glad it wasn’t just me!!

  • carol ann says:

    Everyone in Toronto and area sign up for Maria’s next class… you have no idea how it will change your design life… worth your time and every penny!
    (and of course order Maria’s large paint samples, you will want them after the class for sure)

    PS…don’t forget the ebook… when you need to ask a question, the answers just a flip away…)

  • Kelly says:

    Going to Maria’s class will teach you everything you need to know about undertones and much more! I left her class with so much color confidence and it has helped my decorating and color consulting business grow so much. A very good investment. Plus, it is a lot of fun and you get to meet great people!

  • P. Mithiran says:

    I live in Malaysia and I hope one day in the near future I will be able to attend your workshop. For now I’ll have to be happy with what I can learn from your ebook.

  • Linda V says:

    Glad your latest workshop went so well. Maria I know what you mean about monitors showing different undertones and your concern about that for Webinars. I’m probably clutching at straws here, but would it work if you sent your out of area/overseas students a sample pack (as you have in your classes) so that they are looking at the actual product as well as what is on the screen?

  • Okay, I’m very upset that I didn’t get a Maria Killam coffee mug when I took my training in Atlanta last year. 🙂 Please send ASAP.

  • Maria…something is wrong with the images…

  • Holly says:

    Hi Maria! I’m so tempted to come up to Toronto this summer for one of your workshops. I’ve traded emails with Hannah Dee who spoke so highly of your workshop. I might just have to do it. Love all of your advice and tips you give.

  • Paula Van Hoogen says:

    This post really encouraged me to go to the workshop.
    Can’t wait 🙂 !!!

  • Marlo says:

    What a great idea to add fabrics and countertops to the workshop.

  • Marivic says:

    I’m also from overseas, and am so tempted to fly over there and become tall and skinny too–I mean, become a color expert too! I’m so envious!

  • Tricia Vanier says:

    Maria’s workshop was fun, intense and ran smoothly. The knowledge I gained in those 3 days has already been put to use and I’ve got a better eye and condifedence for undertones now. Maria, Irene and the other workshop participants were all so lovely and made the workshop unforgettable.

  • Julie says:

    If you love that red necklace, then search on eBay for “j crew bubble necklace”. They come in many happy colors.

  • wow .. its amazing thank you

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