Guru of hue

Tips and predictions from a color expert
Amelia Ashton

Look around you: Chances are, Laura Guido-Clark has influenced some of the objects you see ― your sofa, your car, maybe even your child’s new doll.

As a consultant specializing in colors and materials, Guido-Clark has been interpreting the language of color for clients such as Samsung, Toyota, and Mattel for the past 20 years. And because she’s based in Berkeley, she’s particularly attuned to colors inspired by the West.

“There’s a sense of freshness and clarity that comes with our light,” she explains. What results is an increased willingness among both her clients and the general public here to try new palettes and explore cutting-edge combinations.

With so many options, it helps to know the varied ― and surprising ― effects of certain colors in your home. Guido-Clark shares a shocker: Despite the wild trend toward yellow kitchens, couples fight more in a yellow kitchen than in one of any other color. Go for blue in the bedroom, because “it’s very restful,” Guido-Clark says, “and it actually lowers your blood pressure.” Finally, she recommends taking a cue from fast-food restaurants by picking orange for a space where you need encouragement to move quickly, such as an exercise area.