When Pantone writes about colour, the world listens. Founded by Lawrence Herbert in 1963, the Pantone Matching System (Registered Trademark) has become the world standard for colour communications. Recently, the company announced the 2012 Pantone Colour of the Year. It's called Tangerine Tango (17-1463) and according to the experts, it's just the colour we need in 2012.
Colour trends begin on the catwalks of Paris and Milan and quickly find their way into the world of interior design
. Tangerine Tango has just started to take Australian interiors by storm and is part of the broader trend towards colourful interiors. It began, remarkably enough, in corporate offices, those formerly bland off-white, beige and grey work spaces that seemed to operate under the theory that colour distracted from work. When innovative and imaginative corporations decided to buck the trend and throw in splashes of colour, they quickly discovered that far from distracting from work, bright colours stimulated the work environment.
It's this ability of lively shades of orange to lift the spirits that make them perfect for 2012 Australian home renovators. While the 'Lucky Country' has been fortunate enough to have avoided the worst of the world economic slowdown, it does hang over our heads like a cloud. What we need right now is sunshine, not shades of grey and that's what the colour orange offers.
Using Orange Tastefully
The reason why we hire interior decorators
is because they know the difference between tasteful and tacky. You can take the safe route and stick with neutral colours when painting
and decorating your home, but if you just follow a few basic rules, you can safely avoid crossing the line between tasteful and tacky:
- All "oranges" are not alike. Tangerine Tango, for example, is a tasteful blend of red and yellow that results in a colour that is, in Pantone's words, "reminiscent of the radiant shadings of the sunset." This is quite a bit different from an orange that is reminiscent of a petrol tank explosion. Look for a shade of orange that is vibrant but not overbearing.
- If you've fallen in love with a strong colour like orange, resist the urge to have a professional paint your entire house in that colour. Think of it more as a highlight than a dominant theme. the exception to this may be in a room like the bedroom, where the embracing warmth of an orange like Tangerine Tango makes it a great colour to use if you want to create a romantic ambiance.
- Nature has an amazing way of blending colours tastefully. Look at a sunset and you'll see how the colours, from billowing orange tinted clouds to the changing hues of the blue sky seem to magically blend together. Their "magic" is in their relationship to each other in the colour spectrum. Take a cue from nature when using orange with other colours and you'll avoid tacky colour clashes.
Tangerine Tango Interiors
Tangerine Tango looks fabulous against white, cream, pale blue and almost any shade of grey and seems to have been tailor made to complement fine timber furnishings. These are a few ways you can use orange throughout your house:
- In the living room, homeowners are having their antique chairs reupholstered and brought up to date with tangerine and other shades of orange. As a feature wall, orange adds just the right amount of excitement to the room to make it inviting and is a perfect colour for displaying black and white photographs. Wallpaper manufacturers have been quick to pick up on the trend, too, so check out what's available at your local wallpaper supplier and be on the cutting edge of two 2012 home decorating trends: Tangerine Orange and the wallpaper revival.
- In the kitchen, an orange splashback can give you just the right amount of bright colour without overdoing it. If you prefer tiles, consider using orange as a feature tile. It stands out boldly against white or you can soften its appearance by juxtaposing it against more neutrally coloured tiles.
- Orange is a great way to breathe new life into your old bathroom and you may not even have to do anything but paint your walls in order to make your bathroom look like it's undergone a complete bathroom renovation. In many homes, all the bathroom fixtures and even the tiles are white and a colour like Tangerine Tango looks stunning against white.
- In the bedroom, loud colours are not usually called for, but subtle shades of orange like Tangerine Tango, that are "reminiscent of the sunset", have the soothing affect you want in the bedroom. Fabrics soften the appearance of colours even further, so if you want to stay on the safe side, look for orange in your curtains, soft furnishings and bed coverings.
These are just a few ideas. Once you've seen what others are doing with orange, you'll no doubt come up with ideas of your own. If you're concerned that colours are just a passing fad, don't be: according to all the experts, "colour is here to stay" and when you see what orange can do to lift your mood, you'll have to agree.