Painting the way

Gold parrot bookends, 42, available from Miafleur.
Gold parrot bookends, 42, available from Miafleur.

Are you yearning to feel sun-bronzed in these chilly times, considering flirting with a little pink, or maybe dreaming of serene blue skies?

You may be surprised to learn that you’re probably not simply longing for spring - you’re succumbing to the power of paint.

Langton kitchen, painted in Serenity by Pantone, from 12,000, available from Burbidge Kitchens.

Langton kitchen, painted in Serenity by Pantone, from 12,000, available from Burbidge Kitchens.

The colour for 2016, according to Dulux, is Cherished Gold, while the paint wizards at Pantone have chosen blushing Rose Quartz and Serenity, a soft blue, and the trio are tipped to make their mark on our decor this year.

They’ve already strongly influenced the colour palette of the new home ranges, which means there’s no problem picking up on whichever colour appeals. I’ll guarantee it won’t be long before you’ll be thinking you can’t live without one, or maybe two, of these fashionable shades.

So be inspired, and colour up with one, or play with all three...


This rich, ochre gold shade moves away from the in-your-face ‘bling’ of metallics and instead has an earthy, burnished quality, which sits well in a period of contemporary setting.

“Gold and tones of gold are being used everywhere in the design world,” says Rebecca Williamson, senior colour design and content manager at Dulux. “It’s a recurring colour and it’s featuring strongly in graphic design, as well as in architecture, fashion, beauty and interior decoration.

“We feel Cherished Gold is extremely versatile and can act almost like a neutral, and works beautifully with many colours in the spectrum. It’s naturally evolved from last year’s colour of the year, Copper Blush, and is perfectly in tune for the continuing desire to use metallics to add glamour to our interiors.”

DECOR TIP: Cherished Gold can be in unifying force in a room, rather than an overwhelming one, if used sparingly. Pair with cool neutrals, warm browns or even a gutsy chocolate and light wood, for a sophisticated, contemporary look. Alternatively, it will act as a grounding force with sharp citrus shades or chalky pastel hues, like duck egg.

GET THE LOOK: Consider a feature wall in Cherished Gold, which could harmonise with a mouth-watering brown, such as Rum Caramel, or a greeny Atlas Blue. Both available in matt emulsion, from £24.49 for 2.5L, Dulux.

Metallic finishes, especially golds, are featuring strongly in tile collections, and Topps Tiles has a particularly appropriate, glossy finish, Diamante Ocre, £43 per square metre.

If you simply want to experiment with the shade, start with a few accessories to test your enthusiasm for it. For example, capture two trends in one - tropical birds and gold - with Gold Parrot Bookends, £42, MiaFleur, or treat yourself to a luxurious silk cushion from In Spaces: a Pink On Ochre Cushion, £46. My favourite buy is a Copper Cork & Ceramic Vase, £62, Quince Living, which would make a beautiful focal point on a shelf with a Cherished Gold painted wall.


This gentle rose tone is calming and easy to interpret. Go more candy and sugary sweet if you want girly decor, while pure pale pink will provide a classic backdrop.

“There’s no easier way to add colour to your interiors than to inject it with comforting pastel tones, and Pantone’s Colour of the Year, Rose Quartz, is a perfect example,” says Samantha Parish, interior design manager at Hypnos Beds.

“This soothing shade adds a soft, feminine and welcoming touch to an interior scheme. While pastel-based shades are renowned for their mood-enhancing and lifting qualities, be careful not to pair them with too many colours in one room, as this can make a setting feel too busy and jumbled. Instead, pick it as a dominant colour and complement with smaller doses of a secondary, harmonising shade, to create a grown-up, sophisticated look.”

DECOR TIP: Rose Quartz pairs well with rich browns, greens, purples, and yellows but for an on-trend interpretation, match it with a calming shade of light grey. Enhance with soft metallics, rose gold or copper, and wood accessories.