Colour of the Month: Marine Blue
So often we are tempted to regard colour as a purely visual spectrum. And yet history helps us understand that colour is as much as reflection of culture, as it is of the light. Like most colours, the colour blue has had a long and conflicting history. The ancient Greeks saw little value in it and the Romans went further, seeing it as negative: a barbaric colour. Yet in China, blue was the chosen colour of the Han Imperial Dynasty for centuries and has been immortalised in the blue-white porcelain of that period. In both East and West there has been a reversal of approach, as blue now surpasses green and red as the favourite colour of most Europeans and Americans, whilst the colour blue is no longer revered in China.
Blue’s return to favour in the West began in earnest in the twelfth century, when its associations with the Virgin Mary gave it powerfully symbolic value. From there, it began to appear frequently in social, artistic, and religious settings, becoming the colour of royalty and subsequently a symbol of formidable political and military force during the French Revolution. As blue triumphed in the modern era, new shades were created and blue became the colour of romance and the blues, of peace and co-operation and of protecting the planet.
How then, to harness this colour in the home? Blue, in its softer shades (Duck Egg
and Evening Seas
) is very much a foundation colour for Susie Watson Designs but this month we explore its darker manifestations, as represented in the bold yet fresh evocations of Marine Blue. ‘Having stronger colours in a scheme is essential,’ maintains Susie; 'but there is a fine balance to be struck, between contributing depth and interest to a room, whilst not making it feel cluttered or complicated. And whereas one’s instinct is often to create harmony by choosing colours that match, the real magic comes in being more courageous with colour. Contrasting patterns and textures are sometimes exactly what you need, to bring a room to life.
The jewel-like warmth of Marine Blue alongside other colours creates a captivating combination. Cushions are a great way to introduce stronger colours into a room, especially when juxtaposed by other patterns and textures. It works extremely well with Dusky Pinks and darker Reds – again, preferably in a variety of textures and patterns. ‘Variety is, as always, the secret to a resonant, interesting and inviting room.'
In its softest manifestations, our Marine Blue Moonflower print
(which comes as both Linen and wallpaper) contributes the very best of this warm, confident colour, without dominating a scheme. When used for curtains, it can be complemented by our Marine Blue
or Charcoal striped cottons
and accentuated by bolder fringing or even pom-poms. Lampshades are a great way of bringing unity to colour scheme. Don’t forget: our Sail-blue Nina Lampshades
work extremely well in Marine Blue schemes!
If this is your colour, don’t miss an opportunity to include this eye-catching colour in exterior settings: our Marine Blue Mika Deckchair
and accompanying cushions are certain to make a splash on any beach. For a shadier garden setting, get your fix of Marine Blue in our Reverse Denim Blue Rustic Megha cushions
or on our duck-egg tablecloths