I was surprised to find myself attracted to so many red things because I've always thought of red as a very loud color that should be used sparingly, but I find that the color helps me make a visual impact in my small apartment. As a graduate student who spends most of the day reading and writing, I need a living space that is both calming and has something going on, and so far the several different shades of red keep me awake but not distracted by my surroundings. In the bedroom, I wanted a soothing color and decided that a pale green would actually make the red cabinet pop, rather than clashing or looking like Christmas. There's still a lot of work left to do (hanging pictures, for example), and I'm excited to see what kinds of colors show up next. 2 Good color tips: 1. You don't necessarily need to have a planned color scheme. If you move bit by bit, going with your gut instinct, you can pick what you like and gradually shape a room with colors that may surprise you by looking great together. 2. If you have two shades of a color that clash, sometimes bringing in yet another shade (or more) can resolve the problem. I was worried that my red chair and red lacquer cabinet would clash, and a red carpet seems to have made it all work together. 2 good color resources: 1. I have been fascinated by paint sample cards ever since I was a kid going to the hardware store with my father. They are a source of inspiration and limitless possibility, and remain really fun to look at. 2. Shopping for furniture and accessories on craigslist can bring colors into your home that you never would have thought about before. When a certain item is available in just one color instead of a dozen, you can become a lot more open to experimentation.