The future’s orange
If there’s one colour with the power to bring life and warmth to a room, it’s orange. Gabrielle Fagan picks the sweetest shades and juicy buys for the home
We all need a little spice in our lives to bring excitement, blow away the dark clouds and conjure that feel-good factor.
At home, the easiest way to do that is with an injection of colour – but not just any colour.
Orange, with its palette featuring shades associated with exotic sunsets and sultry settings, is the way to go.
After all, the colour is credited with encouraging creativity and producing a reassuring sense of comfort – ideal at a time of year when we all need cosseting,
For a colour guide, simply look outside at nature’s hues, the russet and burnt orange of falling leaves, which blend beautifully with the fading greens and browns of an autumn landscape.
While those shades are ideal for an overall decor theme, be inspired by orange’s more punchy tones. Think about using accents of orange – the colour of Halloween pumpkins – in accessories.
“Orange is such a versatile colour, yet many people are afraid of it because they think only of its more bold hues,” says Judy Smith, colour consultant for Crown Paints.
“But orange accents can bring warmth to a home, especially as the nights start to draw in and natural light fades.
“Also, all colours have a loud and soft side, and the in-between shades can work well in living areas.”
For a warm autumnal feel, she suggests combining orange with leaf green and yellow to create a strong palette which harmonises with light or dark woods, and natural materials.
So ignore the gloomy, dull skies outside and lift your spirits with a shot of undiluted orange in eye-catching accessories or a full dose of the shade for a room scheme.
Muted, more sober tones of orange bring richness and a feeling of opulence to any setting, and won’t overwhelm a space.
“Burnished orange and copper shades are on-trend this year, and are particularly appropriate for this season,” says Liz Cann, design director of Sanderson and Zoffany.
“Orange conjures a cosy atmosphere and teams wonderfully well with grey. Use the latter for walls and then choose orange and copper shades for upholstery fabrics, cushions and lamps.
“Ensure though that you choose a warm grey shade, with undertones of brown, such as our Double Harbour Grey, to accentuate amber hues.”
TOP TIP: Gold accessories will enhance a sense of luxury, but use silver frames and details for a more contemporary edge, advises Cann.
The boldest, brightest shades are full of verve and the colour gives an instant injection of optimism.
“If you prefer a sleek finish and a modern style, pair orange with soft grey and white finishes like aluminium and lacquer. These will act as a cooling influence and give a fresh, crisp look,” says Judy Smith at Crown Paints.
“Orange gives rooms a lift and demonstrates that you’re confident in your taste. Have fun with the colour, experiment and you’ll be surprised at the pleasing impact it has.”
TOP TIP: Orange is made by the mixing of yellow and red. If red hues dominate your orange shade, it will have a hotter, more intense effect. A predominance of yellow in the shade promises a more mellow aura.
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