06 Dec 2021

Interiors column: The calm and tranquil qualities of decorating with blue

All Things Interior with Louise Higgins

Interiors column: The calm and tranquil qualities of decorating with blue

Home library/office by Aspire Design

Blue is an extremely versatile colour and suitable to most interior spaces such as sitting rooms, living rooms, kitchens, dining rooms, bathrooms and bedrooms. It's not surprising that the Pantone Colour Institute selected Pantone 19-4052 Classic Blue as the colour of the year for 2020. The colour blue evokes feelings of calm and tranquillity as we associate blue with the colour of the sky and the sea.

Classic Blue is described by Pantone as a “reassuring presence instilling calm, confidence and connection”. Pantone adds that “associated with the return of another day, this universal favourite is comfortably embraced” as it “brings a sense of peace and tranquillity to the human spirit, offering refuge.

“We are living in a time that requires trust and faith,” Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director of the Pantone Colour Institute added. “It is this kind of constancy and confidence that is expressed by Pantone 19-4052 Classic Blue, a solid dependable blue hue we can always rely on.”

More people love blue than any other colour, so it makes a great choice for home interiors. Blue is such a versatile colour, so whether you choose to paint your entire walls in blue or opt for subtle accents in home accessories you can create a room that suits your personal style. Here is some advice on how to incorporate blue in your interior projects along with some inspirational images from my past interiors projects.


When choosing to paint your walls blue, be mindful of the size of the space and the room's function. Whether you opt for rich navy tones or subtle baby blues, the colour can be captivating.

To make smaller rooms look larger, opt for a light blue reflective paint colour. To give a long room a better proportion, I would suggest painting the smaller walls in a darker paint colour as this will cause the walls to advance and help make the room feel cosy.

For a classic scheme, opt for a blue and white combination that will remain timeless. For a statement piece, consider painting a kitchen island, bookcase, coffee table, bed frame or dresser in blue.


To add texture and pattern to a space you could opt for wallpaper instead of paint.

If you felt wallpapering all the walls a little too much for your scheme, then you could just opt for one feature wall. Some areas to consider for feature walls are the chimney breast, the wall beside your dining table, the wall behind your bed or even the back of a bookcase.


Blue velvets and leathers are very much on trend at the moment. Consider deep navy blues for sofas and headboards.

Deep buttoned upholstery looks fantastic in sofas and headboards, especially in velvet fabrics. If decorating your bedroom with a navy headboard, consider crisp white bedlinen and a navy throw and cushions to create a balanced timeless scheme.

Other areas for upholstery are dining chairs and ottomans.

Rugs and Accessories

If you are too nervous to introduce blue on a large scale area such as your walls or curtains, then you could consider an area rug.

This is a great way to zone different areas, especially in today's market where open plan room concepts are extremely popular.

Consider adding rugs in front of your sofa or under a dining table. Think patterned or gradient rugs for texture and interest. Accessories like scatter cushions, throws and glassware are also great ways to add Pantone's Colour of the Year 2020 into your existing interior schemes.


Artwork is another simple way to inject some blue colour into an interior design scheme. Areas to consider are hallways, over the fireplace, over a dining table or above a sofa.

Thanks again for taking the time to read my weekly column. Please email me your suggestions for future columns.

Louise is a former winner of TV3’s Showhouse Showdown. Contact 086 3999926; email;

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