By Lotte Brouwer published
DARK BLUE TRUMPS ALL OTHER BLUES
Sophisticated, smart and pretty darn sexy, deep blue is the warmer wayof embracing on-trenddark side hues such as grey. It also has a rather luxe feel – justthink of all those châteaux and stately homes, where it is teamed with plentyof gold or used as a backdrop to collections of Old Masters.
These associations are less surprising when you realise that blue pigments once cost more than gold. Historically, blue was a colour that was one of the most expensive to produce and spoke of the wealth and extravagance of the homes it appeared in.
In art, blue paint was reserved for depicting royalty, dignitaries and religious figures and still, to this day, holds that same luxurious appeal.
Navy shades are adaptable, with a useful ability to offset other colours, as well as straddling many seemingly contradictory moods: timeless or contemporary, glamorous or relaxing. It’s ultimately usable and versatile.
Not only that, navy is particularly useful for us Brits, as our northern light enhances its pigments, giving a sense of endless space and opportunity.
Because it’s on the warmer side of the blue spectrum, navy creates an inviting, cocooning feel. Put this down to the fact that all blues evoke feelings of calm and serenity, as well as aiding concentration, making navy the perfect antidote to our 24/7 lives.
It's no wonder we love it so much, and why it's also become such a popular colour for kitchens. But how to decide on the best shade, and where to use it?
HOW TO USE DEEP BLUES ON THE WALLS
Navy is a surprisingly versatile neutralthat works well paired with other colours. For something quiet, colours like grey-greens, pale pink and white look amazing.
If you’re more daring, go for browns and oranges, or even a hot pink– just remember that a small amount goes a long way.
See Also: Stylish Dark Bedroom Ideas
EMBRACE THE DARK SIDE
Don’t struggle against the poorer lightyou get in north-facing rooms, rather take the opportunity to go for abold navy-based scheme. Instead of trying to fightthe gloom with a white, embrace it and make a virtue of its potential for drama.
Navy is fantastic for theway it creates a timelessfeel and adds style.The living room below has a moody, cool and clubby feel, with walls painted tip to toe in inky blue.
Painting walls andceilings the sameinky shade makes astatement and playsa visual trick byblurring boundariesbetween differentareas – useful insmaller spaces orlow-ceilinged rooms.
GO HALF WAY
Even in small doses, navy can create an atmosphere of cosiness and protection. In thislong and thin corridor, the colour was only taken half way up the wall. If the narrow space had been blue all the way to the ceiling, the space would have felt very enclosed. By using a light shade at the top, the area feels more open.
KITCHEN ACCENT COLOUR
If you are not yet ready for coloured kitchen units, try using navy as an accent colour instead. Navy on a kitchen island will ground the space and create a focal point for the room.
Or in a small galley kitchen, paint the shortest wall navy – it will create a feature and bring the wall forward, creating the illusion of a more symmetrical space.
See Also: 10 Stunning Blue Kitchen Ideas
TAKE NOTE FROM SCANDINAVIA
When building up a softer colour storywith a deep blue base, look to our Scandi cousins for ideas for complementary colours. Their northern landscape informs the palette: navyand faded denim blues are paired with soft chalky white, fern green, slate blue and lead-pencil grey. Thereis a natural coolness to it, yet it doesn’t feel cold.
DRESS DEEP BLUES DIFFERENTLY
Dark blue is infinitely flexibleand works justas well in a bedroom or bathroom. Because it’s such a deep colour it’s universal.
When using itin different rooms, you just dress them differently. For instance, in a child’s room, you could add lots of pictures.The navy makes a tremendous backdrop and the imageswould make it a little more playful and colourful.
Although still dramatic, the royal blue in the living room below feels light and fresh as it's offset with sanded blonde flooring, a white marble fireplace and white painted armoire. A light painting and pastel coloured ornaments also help lighten the mood of this room.
See Also: 25 Fun And Playful Kids Room Ideas
A moody blue cantake on a restful vibewhen teamed withclassic white andwarming wood. Keepthe ceilings whiteas well for a harmoniouslook and to makethe room appearmore spacious.
THE BEST DEEP BLUES OUT THERE
BEST FOR A RELAXING BEDROOM:
See Also: Stylish Dark Bedroom Ideas
BEST AS A FOIL FOR POPS OF COLOUR
BEST FOR WRAP-AROUND COLOUR
BEST FOR A STATEMENT WALL
Lotte is the Digital Editor for Livingetc, and has been with the website since its launch. She has a background in online journalism and writing for SEO, with previous editor roles at Good Living, Good Housekeeping, Country & Townhouse, and BBC Good Food among others, as well as her own successful interiors blog. When she's not busy writing or tracking analytics, she's doing up houses, two of which have features in interior design magazines. She's just finished doing up her house in Wimbledon, and is eyeing up Bath for her next project.
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