Color of the Month: Yellow
“All that glisters is not gold "
This famous Shakespeare quote holds true today (though "glisters" is now "glitters") as we celebrate the color yellow. It's important to acknowledge its wide range--from soft and buttery to bold and disruptive. In design, the color yelllow presents a unique opportunity to make a statement, even more so than the popular metallic gold (though I have to confess, I LOVE a gold accent).
Being midsummer, a short season here in Buffalo, it felt like time to introduce a colour with a sense of levity and positivity. Though for some, yellow might not fit that category. For me, it certainly does.
Yellow is often associated with the word “gold”, which seems to conjure up a melody of positive associations like warmth, comfort, enlightenment, and abundance. From a simple grouping of varying gold frames, a metallic spun fabric or a pop of color on the inside of a door, a full salute makeover in yellows and golds can feel intoxicating. Whether it’s an on-trend rosy toned gold or a pale champagne shade with a warm undertone, each offers a visual attractiveness and colour opportunity that can reflect a wide variety of styles from bohemian to eclectic to all-out glam.
The History of Yellow
Yellow originated in the form of yellow ochre pigment (which is actually still used in C2 Paint!) and was one of the first colors used by humans as illustrated in prehistoric cave art. (source: Wikipedia)
In Ancient Egypt, the yellow color was associated with gold, which was considered to be imperishable, eternal and indestructible. Ancient Egyptians believed that the bones and skin of their gods were made of gold.
From the early Byzantine period through Neoclassicism and into Art Deco yellow/gold continued into today’s design market for good reason. Always adding a strong vein of lustre to any palette – the “Midas Touch”, if you will.
The paintings of the Dutch post-impressionist Vincent van Gogh (1854–1890) are famous for their vivid colours, particularly the striking use of yellow, most evident in his later works such as Van Gogh, Still Life: Vase with Fifteen Sunflowers, 1888.
“How wonderful yellow is. It stands for the sun.” -Vincent VanGogh
While the history of yellow and gold throughout history is compelling, perhaps the color also hits a more personal note to my eclectic bohemian style, the less conformist nature that heads my own standard of living.
The power of yellow is palpable: it radiates sunshine, nature and optimism while at the same time it can indicate caution and danger. Used in the right way, it has the power to transform a space. Gold accents, in particular, can bring any palette into a more consciously curated and opulently stylish living space.
- A Little Says A lot. For those still timid in the pursuit of yellow, rest assured, a small amount can go far to elevate your mood, without feeling overwhelmed.
- Earth to Yellow - Gold tones don't always have to feel opulent and glitzy. For a more earthy vibe, integrate some terracotta and baked earth colours to create a more grounded feeling space.
- Perfect Pops – if you don’t feel like totally committing to yellow walls, choose an accent wall or simply add a few pieces of bright yellow to an already neutral room.
Like with any color, no matter what shade you reach for, make sure it feels authentic to you.
1. Gilded + Sheer - add an accent of black thrown in with furnishings to sharpen this combination.
2. Frida + Ostrich - For an adventurous statement...If this were my space, I would do Frida (semigloss) on all of the trim and interior doors with Ostrich (matte Luxe) on the walls, with a soft white on the ceiling (the 5th wall ) in Cricket (C2-916).
3. Epernay + Tassel - Popping a neutral like Epernay with a bold yellow like Tassel adds instant energy.
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