A hall painted in Charlotte's Locks by Farrow & Ball - we like the flashes of blue from the chair legs against it

Hot but tricky – 15 ways to use orange in the home

In places like Morocco and India a totally orange room is not a particularly surprising thing to walk into. In a front room in a colder more northerly place? It takes a bit of working up to. Yet orange has been emerging as a (hot) favourite in interiors for some time now and there are various ways to go for it, from using it as a full-on base colour, to introducing it as an accent tone for softer shades – currently green, blush and shades of brown proving especially popular for the contrast tone. Below are some of our favourite uses of orange in rooms. And if you need more persuasion, revert back to our interviews with Polly Dickens and Nina Bruun – two experts who’ve embraced orange in big and small ways.

Softer shades of orange all around in this bedroom at El Fenn hotel, Marrakech

Softer shades of orange all around in this bedroom at El Fenn hotel, Marrakech

  • If you want orange all around but want to create a soothing environment like this bedroom in the El Fenn hotel in Marrakech, use softer, more muted orange tones.
  • For more drama, such as in Louis Pretty restaurant in Berlin designed by Philipp Mainzer Architecture and Design, go for a super bright orange.
  • Do bright orange only in rooms where being awakened is helpful (i.e. not the bedroom). Kitchens, dining rooms, hallways, bathrooms – all good.
Berlin restaurant Louis Pretty pairs orange with coral-pink. Image from Trendland

Berlin restaurant Louis Pretty pairs orange with coral-pink. Image from Trendland

Vibrant orange next to green and black. Image from Gisbert Pöppler Architecture and Interior

Vibrant orange next to green and black. Image from Gisbert Pöppler Architecture and Interior

  • Orange works with various accent colours – try blue, coral, green, brown and black.
A vibrant orange hall in designer Sheila Bridges Home is offset by brown and green accents - Image from New York Times, found on Pinterest

A vibrant orange hall in designer Sheila Bridges Home is offset by brown and green accents – Image from New York Times, found on Pinterest

A hall painted in Charlotte's Locks by Farrow & Ball - we like the flashes of blue from the chair legs against it

A hall painted in Charlotte’s Locks by Farrow & Ball – we like the flashes of blue from the chair legs against it

  • Orange with back and white stripes is powerful and Memphis-esq and, as Suzy Hoodless proves, great up a set of stairs. She’s limited the orange to a feature wall.
Image by Lucas Allen from House & Garden

Image by Lucas Allen from House & Garden

  • Orange painted half-way up a wall is a good way to be bold without orange being overpowering.
Paint vibrant orange half way up a wall like in the Hoppa restaurant in Amsterdam

Paint vibrant orange half way up a wall like in the Hoppa restaurant in Amsterdam

  • Similarly, orange painted onto wall details – cornices, dado rails, a single door for example, stands out nicely without being the dominant colour.
Image from a Penthouse designed by Dariel Studio

Image from a Penthouse designed by Dariel Studio

  • When you want to introduce orange more softly, try it as an accent shade in the form of furniture or curtains against muted pinks, nudes, brown or dark grey on your walls.
Image by Michael Sinclair for House & Garden

Image by Michael Sinclair for House & Garden

11/04/2016, Paris, France: aménagement de l'hôtel Saint-Marc par le Studio milanais Dimore le centre de Paris.

L’hôtel Saint-Marc, Paris by Dimore Studio

Dubois Bed from The Future Perfect, accented with a rust coloured cushion

Dubois Bed from The Future Perfect, accented with a rust coloured cushion

Orange is the accent here along with hot pink and cooler neutral shades in this rug by Emily's House London

Orange is the accent here along with hot pink and cooler neutral shades in this rug by Emily’s House London

  • Orange with hot pink, vibrant green and dark grey will create a dramatic contrast. And one we think is fail-safe.
Orange Alvar Aalto stools with a hot pink rug in Abel Sloane's scheme

Orange Alvar Aalto stools with a hot pink rug in Abel Sloane’s scheme

  • Take orange into the garden for the green element to collide with it.
The power of orange and green - heated seat from The Future Perfect

The power of orange and green – heated seat from The Future Perfect

  • When you want your orange accessory to feel super chic look for rust shades and choose materials such as velvet and linen.
A deep rust colour on the Noelle Sofa by Pinch offsets a dark grey wall

A deep rust colour on the Noelle Sofa by Pinch offsets a dark grey wall



Jill Macnair

About

Jill Macnair has worked as an interiors journalist for 13 years, contributing to titles including Elle Decoration, The Sunday Times and The Guardian. She set up cult interiors blog My Friend’s House in 2009 with Ros Anderson and continues to run the forum daily.


The Chromologist 2017 | Farrow & Ball

The Chromologist