As we emerge from the depths of the recession, life has taken on new meaning. We yearn for a simpler, more relaxed way of living and we find comfort in the familiar. Objects that remind us of happier times take centre stage, and splashes of bold, uplifting colours are fully embraced.
Cheerful, optimistic yellows and oranges speak to our playful side, while tranquil blues and greens muster a sense of wellbeing and warmth. Add to that a vibrant mix of purples, mustards, ochres and earthy tones – all colours that celebrate our past – and the new season’s colours combine to refresh, inspire, motivate and lift our spirits.
Hues have a feminine edge with a sense of cosiness. Alongside femininity lies retro. Old is the new new, as we look to surround ourselves with nostalgic pieces. Raw, unembellished beauty sits easily beside luxurious materials or simple, upcycled objects.
Splashes of strong colour feature not just on accent walls – our appliances and homewares are getting an overhaul too. Toasters, mixers, fridges, rangehoods, ovens and other homewares are becoming brighter and cheerier, with oranges, yellows, reds and blues coming through.
Splash those feel-good colours onto walls and you have instant pick-me-up pizzazz. Try Resene Wild Thing, a star-bright yellow gold that’s bold, energetic and frivolous. For the really adventurous, pair this playful colour with blacks or blues, such as Resene Bowie, a clear litmus and cyan blue reminiscent of the 1960s.
Resene Fleetwood harks back to the good old days too, with its gentle combination of green, brown and mustard yellow. It’s a fabulous match for yellow greens, rouge violets and lemon sherbets, such as Resene Nirvana, Resene Boogie Wonderland and Resene First Light.
Oranges are coming through murkier, though they’re still full of fire and splendour. Resene Ayers Rock is a modern take on burnt orange and teams well with reptilian olives (such as Resene Evolution), warm greys (Resene Kookaburra) and spearmint greens (Resene Howzat).
Reds are still mostly blue-based – your cherry reds rather than in-your-face reds – evoking energy, excitement and passion. The richly sensuous Resene X Factor sets the mood with its deep, plush tones, while the brighter cherry red of Resene Bullseye will heat things up without blowing a fuse.
Rust red hues also move through into browns and earthy tones. Resene Courage is an earth red darkened with brown. Try it with a smouldering copper metallic such as Resene Triumph or an earthy olive green such as Resene Butterfly Creek.
Pink, the sweet side of red, diverges into many hues from pale pastels to the more luscious. Resene Smitten is a vivacious fuchsia pink with a pinch of violet, while Resene Devoted is a delicate cherry blossom blushed pink – sweetly feminine and soft.
Blues feature widely in the colour palette – after all, we’re happiest when the sky is blue. From intense blues to washed out indigo blues as well as cyan and lagoon blues, this is a hue that instils confidence and promotes an overall sense of serenity. Resene Escape is refreshing and optimistic, a pale cerulean blue, dreamy and calm. It’s the perfect complement to the stormy blue grey of Resene Jetsetter. Deeply intense blues such as Resene Magnum and Resene Nite Life provide a viable neutral alternative to grey or black. Mixed with silver you can achieve the elegance of a more traditional black and gold combination.
Purples are also varied – from bold violet to the softened purples of dried flowers, such as Resene Believe and Resene Poet. They all have an underlying warmth in common, ultramodern, majestic or subtle.
Nature takes last season’s greens to a whole new level, with a broader, fresher, more back-to-earth range. Greens are coming indoors as people treat their home as a sanctuary and recreate the illusion of being nestled in nature, rather than in the middle of suburbia.
Minty apple greens, like Resene Kandinsky, are one flavour of the season as a fresh exterior look and inside in reading rooms and bedrooms.
The palette also extends to yellow greens, such as Resene Koru and Resene Nirvana, and turquoise and emerald greens such as Resene Zeal and Resene Moxie. There’s also crossover hues moving from green to blue, such as Resene Free Spirit.
Our thirst for sustainability trickles through into the 2012 colour range, with a palette that’s infused with earthy, neutral tones – showing our growing appreciation for the earth and its resources. Wood tones are reflected in beiges and browns and offset by soft golden metallics, such as Resene Ignition. Neutrals, browns and beiges tend towards warmer, comforting variants, such as Resene Secret Road and Resene Fantail.
Greys are trending softer teamed with fresh whites, with the rapid rise in popularity of Resene Thorndon Cream reflecting this trend.
Off-whites are pure and uncomplicated, and there is a definite comeback of cool white, such as Resene Barely There, as a background neutral. Plain white, such as Resene Half Alabaster, is clean and elegant, a stark contrast to the growing range of blacks, such as Resene Black Sheep and Resene Blackout.
Cosy, casual elegance, stability and familiarity are key trends for 2012, with comfort playing a leading role. And that translates to the old adage ‘home is where the heart is’. As many of us choose to stay put, our homes are well and truly becoming our sanctuaries.
View colours for 2012 in the Resene The Range 2011/12 fandeck available from Resene ColorShops and representatives, or view online at www.resene.com/colour. Electronic colour swatches for ArchiCAD, AutoCAD, SketchUp, Revit and more are also available online.