I Dream in Color

  • Pin It
  • print
  • email to a friend

I Dream in Color

By Michelle White

Color in my world is of the utmost importance! Color tells you what the tone is of a moment. Blue, a soft blue, is peaceful. Blue stimulates conversation (which is why my mother painted her kitchen blue) and green is restful (which is also why she painted her bedroom green), while red stimulates hunger (and you guessed it, her dining room is red). There are studies that show why colors evoke specific reactions in people. Not everyone may be aware of how colors affect you, but whether you realize it or not, the colors do, in fact, affect you.

In the Paula Brand so much of what we want our fans and customers to experience is a feeling. We want people to feel like they are wrapped up in Paula’s warmth and love. Since Paula can’t go visit everyone and bring her warmth and style to their home, we work hard to make her products convey that feeling. Color is probably one of our most important visual tools.

Currently I’m working on a project with our candle company. We’ve had candles for a number of years now, but we’re refining and growing our selection (you may have seen our current line). To give you a little behind the scenes - our candle group sends me a variety of wax colors in petri dishes.


We use “Pantone” colors to start (not to get too techy but if you aren’t familiar with Pantones it’s a system of standardized color formulas). Since you cannot accurately predict what a Pantone color will do in wax we view the actual waxes poured into petri dishes. From there I narrow down colors that are correct for the scent and fit into a palette that is right for our brand. From scents like Sweet Tea, to Georgia Peach, to Blooming Hydrangea… I help pick the perfect color for the perfect scent. And of course we can’t use the same Pantone color twice - so we go through a whole lotta colors!

We’ve narrowed down a color palette that I think came out quite nice.


My favorites are probably the pretty blues and greens.


And the sunny warm tones.


I always like our faithful neutral. Brown is a very important color to us. Seems in the South there is so much richness in things and it’s nicely conveyed with the right brown. Getting the right brown is very important, warm and chocolatey.


Every home we moved into when I was growing up (and for a while we moved every two years) my mom revisted the colors in her home. She’d keep the ones she fell in love with (like the kitchen blue) and tweaked the ones that weren’t quite right (like the red that seemed to change in every house - Now it’s happily Benjamin Moore Cottage Red). While the studies told her the colors she wanted, she had to find the perfect hues that conveyed the feeling she wanted to live in. Years of living with her, I guess I became a bit sensitive to the color differences and how they affect the mood of a room. One day I’ll share my mom’s color chips with you! It’s quite a ziplock bag full of paint chips (and she knows what every chip is for!).

Just like my mom, Paula’s brand is always updating and revising. We’re currently rebranding a good bit of items - more to come on that in future blog posts. Would love to know what you think. Tell me what y’all like in a candle - from the scent (sweet, floral, herbal, clean..) to vessel (ceramic, glass, modern, antique… ) ... really anything you like (or don’t like)! Would love to know your thoughts!

Stay inspired!


Michelle White, Creative Director for the Paula Deen brand and originally from New Orleans, found her way to Savannah (and Paula Deen) by the charm of this beautiful city. Now living in Los Angeles, Michelle oversees product development and branding for Paula Deen. From packaging to photoshoots to cookware to kitchen towels her work is building a unified “Paula” image across all mediums. Michelle loves the ‘out of the box’ beauty in things.

Read More From Blogs.

Read More From Michelle White.

You May Also Like These Articles:

You May Also Like These Recipes:

Leave a Comment

Reader Comments:


Please resume production of your delicious candles. There is no other candle that can compete. Your baking scents, apple strudel and pecan pie for instance used to fill my home for many many hours. I know that there is definitely a market for them and as a loyal fan, I would purchase them by the case. I do hope you receive this comment and give it your careful consideration as there are so many of us that are sad that your candles are not available at this time. A very loyal customer, Happy Thanksgiving Miss Paula

By Betty Alcorn on November 24, 2013


I know this doesn't pertain to anything on this page but, there wasn't any where to leave a comment in your freezer section. I really love your section on freezing food. Here is my question, How come every time I freeze meat in airtight containers there is a layer of ice on top of the meat and it taste like freezer burn? Would it still be okay if I cook it with the ice on top?

By Patricia Parks on August 26, 2013


I love the pineapple upside down biscuits candle! I saw they were on clearance at walmart so I bought them all up, but they're still not back. Don't quit making them!

By Dawn on January 28, 2012



By VICKI BROWN on September 07, 2011


Just finished painting our wisteria covered pergola. White posts and trellising, light blue gray floor, and white for 2 swings, 2 rockers, and a loveseat....have a great weekend...I'm going to rest...LOL!

By Mary Dixson on June 12, 2011


Just finished painting our wisteria covered pergola, white, with white trellising and light blue grey for the floor. Glad to be finished...Oh, also painted both swings and two rockers and a loveseat in dazzling white! Have a great weekend...I'm going to rest..LOL Mary Dixson xoxo

By Anonymous on June 12, 2011


Hi Paula, I love reading all your articles. I enjoyed reading about the different colors and their moods. I would like to know what your mother painted her living room. We have a medium room and has a wood stove insert. Im going to do some painting soon and was curious what colors would you think for the walls? As far as candles go I really love everything you do. But I love the smell of cinnamon and lavendar. Peppermint would be a wonderful thing for Christmas! Thanks for taking the time to read this. Diana

By Diana on June 12, 2011


I am familiar with Pantone color system, worked in the wallpaper/textile printing business for several years and then in the textile industry for almost 20 years, so YES color is important. My taste in color varies from "beach colors" blues, greens, sands, to "jewel tones" sapphire, ruby, garnet, gold and where these colors are going to go does make a difference. I also like to change the colors of a room - not so much the walls but everything in them according to the season or holiday. My husband gets a kick out of how I have storage boxes marked with "Easter" all pastels, or "Halloween" yes black & orange. I enjoy colors and the mood they set. I would have to say lavender and sage are still my most favorite colors tho but try not to overdue it with them.

By Barbara Dycus on June 12, 2011


I run a one room schoolhouse that's bee in operation since 1913 in nv. I wud like to paint yr what colors are good for reading. Lecture. And independent work where students must have their own stamin? We have a small library and he students can use pillows for reading on thje floor, and elsewhere they have beanbag. Chairs.

By christine, responsible teacher on June 12, 2011


I like the clean scents, fresh linen, peach, anything with a soft aroma. Sugar Cookie, banana pudding, for winter and Christmas. We are painting our house. It is a little old cracker box. Huh, I tell people, don't laugh it is paid for. All we do is pay taxes. Went from a mauve looking to Sherwood Green. I want a RED DOOR. My husbands nephew is doing most of the painting, he don't want a RED DOOR. I'm pouting.lol Have not decided on foundation color, probably earth tone or plum color, not Hunter Green like he wants.We have been working on it all week. The hubby works at the KIA plant in West Point, has been on shutdown all week. That is how he spent his vacation.

By Ann on June 12, 2011


The smell of sweet grass or blooming wisteria. If you ever make it to Northeast Georgia around spring/early summer and get to pass by a freshly cut yard... Mmmmmm. Heavely!!! Mossy Creek Campground has that scent after the grounds have been cut..If that scent could be bottled...it would be my favorite!! If the smells of Mossy Creek were to be made into a wax candle then they would have to be poured into pottery since this is home of the Meader's pottery.. Oh my, I think their may be a market for it.. Lol! Little face jug candles with the smells of camp meeting which include home cooked dinners and deserts,sweet grass,homemade icecream, fresh fruits,shavings(what most of the older tents at the campground has for flooring.)I could go on and on.. Sorry. Got lost in memory lane..

By Tracey on the Mossy on June 12, 2011


Re:candle scents I love candles and use them throughout my home, both for the ambience of the light and the beautiful scents. I find I gravitate toward earthy scents (such as pachouli) or the fresh scents. I don't personally care for florals. Years ago Pier One carried a candle with a fabulous scent, called "Foliage". Unfortunately they discontinued it. I will be anxiously be awaiting Paula's new candles! Karen Cronise

By Karen Cronise on June 08, 2011


Would you PLEASE make a Peppermint candle for Christmas time. I love that scent but can never find it any more. It is especially nice when I have our family buffet and I have some candles burning and I add some pine in there in certain rooms.

By Cindy Thornlow on June 04, 2011


Hey Michelle from an old friend! I loved your blog. What a great job you have. I also LOVE color. No wall in my house is allowed to be beige. I think our favorite candles scents are the ones that evoke fond memories. I once bought a tomato vine scented candle and absolutely fell in love with it. I have never found another quite as unique as that. That scent definitely evokes summer for me.

By Liz Folse on May 31, 2011


I love candles that have a fresh rain scent, in a light cloud blue or fresh light green leaf color, in a glass container (so you can see the color). My husbands favorite is a melon/cucumber scent in any soft color.

By Leilani Purvis on May 31, 2011


I guess I always gravitate to the brighter side of color since we live in a rainy part of the country. It tends to help me stay inspired and hopeful. My favorites are yellow and white with red, green and brown accents. I have to have the brightness those colors bring during the dreary and drippy weather. And then when it does sunshine it's just like God's breathed new life into my soul! I come alive once again! We live in a gorgeous part of the country with the Cascade and Olympic Mts, and the waters of Puget Sound it's just that when that sunshine reveals itself from behind those clouds after so long, it's like a rebirth experience! We truly appreciate sunshine when we get it.The brighter colors help my heart hope for those sunny days ahead for our area. We can go weeks without sunshine on the west side of Washington. A gentle yellow gives me happiness and hope!

By Sky Smith on May 27, 2011


I love candles. My favorite scents are season based. Spices and vanilla's in fall and winter with apple thrown in. Fruit and light scents in the summer. I tend to stay away from the clean, fresh and linen smells as they always seem too strong for my house. I want my sheets to smell good, but I don't want my house to smell like one of the kids dumped the laundry detergent. I tend to gravitate toward warm colors as well. The richer darker colors in winter and with lighter shades, like peach in the summer.

By Christie on May 25, 2011


they look good enough to eat...really are beautiful

By susan..nj on May 24, 2011


Georgia Peach...Blooming Hydrangea, those words make me smile. My favorite color and my favorite flower. Looking forward to smelling the candles to see if they can pull me away from my favorite scent...vanilla.

By Karen Potter on May 24, 2011


Love the warm tones and the brown. I love the fragrance of woodsy, outdoors; that earthy smell of rich moist soil, moss and the smell of the earth when it rains; and the smell of dill. Those smells trigger memories of working in the garden with my grandmother when I was a child. My grandparents also lived in a home with a dirt floor basement. The packed earth of the cool basement always had a fragrance that some dislike, but I find it very beautiful. I also prefer soy based candles. As for containers, definitely want to be able to re-use them, and like a clean simple design. Does not have to be clear glass or anything like that. Love metal containers, as they age well.

By Cynthia Heckman on May 24, 2011

My Recipe Box |

Paula's Upcoming Schedule