Color choices in furniture over the past decade have been mostly “brown, brown or more brown,” says Louis Slone, owner of Slone Brothers Furniture in Longwood, Fla. “People are tired of brown. We’ve been ramming it down their throats for years,” he says. “They’re ready for a change.”
Starting last winter amid the gray days of Seattle, I sensed and then witnessed that color changes were coming. As I drove by Brooks Brothers in downtown Seattle I did a double take. My perception of this company is conservative, traditional but there in the windows were bold cabana stripes. Talk about waking up the windows! That’s when my intuition was confirmed. Color is on the way. And ready or not, we’re getting it.
Colors from Hickory Chair
Bright color is making a big splash in the furniture market, says Jaclyn C. Hirschhaut, spokeswoman for the American Home Furnishing Alliance in High Point, N.C.
“In home furnishings, we’ve had a long period of neutral colors in wood and upholstery. With concerns over the gloomy economy, consumers are looking for a spark of brightness — something that feels like fun and makes them smile.”
Some new designs feature hot pinks, oranges and yellows. Others come in cool but lively blues, greens and turquoise.
Pink and lime green ottoman
“In a tough, uncertain economy, people’s homes become their haven,” says Kris Kolar, vice president for interior design at Robb & Stucky Interiors. “Bright colors make their haven a happier place.”
None of these experts is advocating a total home makeover in lime green or fuchsia. Instead, Slone expects that homeowners will be looking for unique, colorful items. I already see this trend appearing in my projects too. Pieces such as an aqua-lacquered bowl, a turquoise sideboard or sectional seating in a vivid fire engine red.
Using colorful accent pieces effectively adds a little lighthearted whimsy to an interior. I believe homeowners will inject color in small doses as we all seek a brighter side around us. They may add a doormat printed with daisys, a bed painted lime green to team with a turquoise chest, or a drum table accented with stripes. But you can be certain, those stripes won’t be brown!