Poor Orange. The most misunderstood color



How is it the end of October already?


Well, it just is, but that means that the year is going to be over very quickly. And it’s not that I’m trying to rush things. But isn’t that how it goes?

Yesterday, I needed to do some errands in town when I suddenly found myself trying to swim up a river of youngsters, all decked out for Halloween– with their folks. Hundreds of ’em.

It was fun and of course, nostalgic to see all of the kids at differing ages of childhood.

And that brings me to Halloween and of course, the color we associate it with–



And I’ve written about orange before. A few times.


In fact, I was going to resurrect one of these posts, but instead, I’ll just link back to them.


Do You Know What Is The Most Classic Color?

Here’s The Problem With Halloween Decor

20 Great Shades of Orange Paint

Feelin’ A Bit Orange  (one of the first posts on the blog!)

Presenting the Hottest Color Palette

My 16 Favorite Benjamin Moore Paint Colors (includes my favorite shade of orange)


Orange is actually a wonderful color!


And even if you don’t want to paint your entire home orange, some carefully chosen accents can totally make a room.


Chenault James

For instance, these orange drapes look pretty smashing in this beautiful new-trad dining room.

This reminded me of Ben Pentreath’s fabulous orange drapes with his vivid blue dining room. This image, you may recall was taken from my recent visit to England and his gorgeous home and garden.

From a very old issue of Martha Stewart. And an interesting blog post from Suzanne McGrath whose work I love. They used her entry for this shoot. And she also has a fabulous list of beautiful orange colors. Many are my favorites too and a couple are in the Laurel Home Essential Paint Collection. One is a Benjamin Moore, Farrow and Ball equivalent.

Speaking of film shoots. I just found out that this home we did a couple of years ago was used for a recent film shoot! (“LUCE” with Naomi Watts, Tim Roth and Octavia Spencer!) And they kept many of the pieces of furniture we did, etc. That will be fun to see.

orange lacquer walls

Christian Leone via Lonny

And I had to persevere to find a high res image of this beauty. ( you can see many more images if you click on the link.

Is that a stunning bar cart, or what?

I know that some of you want to see a post about bar carts. I will try to do that.


Yes, yes… I know. CALM DOWN.  ;]


I found the cart. Or at least one that looks like this one.

Now be forewarned, that the photo is typically, not-so-great.

I mean, couldn’t they at least kick the dog chew thing out of the frame? lol


Anyway, if anyone is interested, it’s on Chairish and they are selling it for only $600 which I think is very reasonable for this vintage piece which looks to be in very good condition. The sellers are located somewhere in New York. That’s all I know.


And in celebration of Halloween, the fall season and the beautiful color, ORANGE, I made a special holiday widget full of orange items.


Some things are old and some are new. Please click on the images to find out more about that item.



Happy Halloween!


Please get ready if you are a rolodex owner as the next update is coming out on Wednesday.


If you don’t get your update, (it will be in the evening) please first check your spam filter. I would search for Sendowl as they are the shopping cart company that sends it out via email.


If it’s not there, then it’s almost definitely an email issue of one kind or another. You may definitely contact me here: adminATlaurelberninteriorsDOTcom and I will help you sort it out and to get your updated download link.

It would be very helpful if you have the email address that you used to purchase the rolodex.

If you don’t already have a rolodex, this is the time to get it AND the paint/palette collection bundle as the price for each of them is going up on November 13th. For more info, please click here.




PS: Don’t forget to check out the Hot Sales pages. There are some great things this week and also some new things since it came out on Friday.

  • Diane Keane - October 31, 2017 - 2:50 PM

    Hello Laurel, sooo happy to make your acquaintance! I am a new subscriber, just perusing the visual links on your blog has my mouth watering! I’ve followed Ben Pentreath’s blog for several years now and I totally cannot get enough of him either, so thank you for featuring him & his work. (Have you cruised his earlier blog posts? Be sure to see when his dining room was painted fuscia!) Your own blog posts are a hoot, totally a unique writing style. I look forward to many hours indulging in reading about and gloating over stunning interiors in your previous posts! P.S. Ben’s friend and fellow blogger Ruth Guilding at Bible of British Taste, has just posted about George Saumarez Smith’s home in Winchester. Check it out at http://www.bibleofbritishtaste.com. Ta!


    • Laurel Bern - October 31, 2017 - 3:38 PM

      Hi Diane,

      Welcome to the blog and so glad that you’ve introduced yourself! I have been reading a lot of Ben’s old posts– particularly as I’ve been trying to locate his paint colors. I can come close, but don’t know the exact ones.

      I follow Ruth on insta and now her blog. Darling Dolores also sent me the post about George Saumarez Smith. He’s a doll too!ReplyCancel

  • Parnassus - October 30, 2017 - 3:57 PM

    Hello Laurel, Orange can be a very smart color, as per your examples, but it is easily misused. People who lived through the 1970’s are especially wary of it.

    I haven’t done much permanent decoration with orange, but for Halloween I used it with a lavish hand. In fact, I just posted some pics from an old Halloween party, with orange clearly the dominant color:


    • Laurel Bern - October 31, 2017 - 3:36 PM

      OMG!!! I can’t believe that house!!! I can’t imagine how much time it took to make it look like that, not to mention put it back. And too funny about the police!

      In some of the old blog posts, linked to (don’t expect you to have read them) I have pics from the 70s which explains why people are scared of it. ReplyCancel

  • Noel - October 30, 2017 - 9:27 AM

    I painted my kitchen ceiling “Invigorate” orange by Sherwin Williams. I also have a 36″ orange range that almost matches the ceiling color perfectly. I love love love my orange ceiling!! And the orange goes great with the creamy tones of the wall and kitchen cabinets, and the dark walnut of the hardwood floor and counters. So cheery and bright 🙂ReplyCancel

  • Karen - October 29, 2017 - 8:06 PM

    I have been a fan of orange since I saw an Olympic paint brochure several years ago and used it as a launching point to decorate our master bedroom. Orange silk curtains all of the way!!!ReplyCancel

  • Lorri - October 29, 2017 - 5:14 PM

    That Nathan Turner wallpaper makes me so happy.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 29, 2017 - 7:57 PM

      Hi Lorri,

      Yes, me too. I would put it in my laundry room if I had a laundry room. hahaReplyCancel

  • varya - October 29, 2017 - 4:57 PM

    Hmm,hubs insisted on FB Orangery for his home office.Looks terrific but never tell him I said that …he would paint every room a version of it.We will keep it our little secret.Just like I will forget to show him this wonderful post. (ps-glad to read you are feeling better)ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 29, 2017 - 7:56 PM

      LOL – Love it! And orangery is one of those colors that you look at it on the chip and go. NO WAY!!! and up on the wall, it’s like, “Where have you been all of my life?”ReplyCancel

  • Cyndia Montgomery - October 29, 2017 - 4:30 PM

    I so enjoyed this post,and going back to read your other posts on orange! I especially love those shades that look like sunsets, with light glowing through the color. My favorite combo is to use orange with the soft blues and teals, and even greys. I found a few yards of vintage linen in orange and cream, and used it on my dining chairs. The dining room is still unfinished, but now I know the direction I’m going in.
    BTW, when I fell into the wormhole of your previous posts, I was led to the ones regarding decorator vs. designer. As a decorator in Alabama, I know this PITA subject well.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 29, 2017 - 7:55 PM

      Hi Cyndia,

      Yes, PITA is right! It’s not a problem here in NY, but I do know that parts of the country where it’s a big problem.ReplyCancel

  • Cheryl - October 29, 2017 - 3:55 PM

    Orange is my favorite color!!!ReplyCancel

  • pat - October 29, 2017 - 3:43 PM

    Love this post Laurel! Any idea what the vendor/manufacturer of the wallpaper is in the Chenault James pic? LOVE IT 🙂

    Hope you are feeling well and re-entry from London wasn’t too bad!

    Thank you!!


    • Laurel Bern - October 29, 2017 - 4:05 PM

      Hi Pat,

      Yes, I have an idea. ;]

      It’s the Veneto pattern by Quadrille. One of my favorites. It comes in a bunch of colorways. You can see it in the apple green in my portfolio in the green dining room on the chairs. It also comes in wallpaper.

      It’s on their website about half-way down the page, in the link below.


  • Sharon Jessup Joyce - October 29, 2017 - 2:24 PM

    Gorgeous post, as always, and I love this homage to orange. I just redid a guest room in natural cottons and linens and decided the room needed some hits of bright and warm. Orange, brick red and deep gold in the end-of-the-bed throw, chair cushion and artwork (an enlargement on canvas of an autumn photo I took last year in Vermont) is looking very happy in the room. It’s the room my daughter always uses when she visits, and we’re calling it the pumpkin spice room.ReplyCancel

  • Elizabeth - October 29, 2017 - 2:21 PM

    Years ago I painted our den an orange/coral and it made me so happy! It was so warm and friendly and looked great with my antiques. Then I figured it was time to sell my house, so I toned it down with a neutral like cotton balls. The room is not the same and I am still living here. In my next house I will again use that color.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 29, 2017 - 3:57 PM

      Hi Elizabeth,

      Well, there is a testament to the fact that a great color doesn’t require toning down. ReplyCancel

  • Jeanne - October 29, 2017 - 1:06 PM

    Lovely post as always. I looked it up and per Wikipedia “Capodimonte porcelain is porcelain created by the Capodimonte porcelain manufactory, which was established in Naples, Italy, in 1743. … Capodimonte is famous for its moulded figurines and its decorative modelled flowers applied to cups and vases.”ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 29, 2017 - 2:08 PM

      Thank you for looking that up, Jeanne. I could’ve looked it up too but sometimes I get lazy and can’t be bothered. Of course, now I’m going to see “capodimonte” all over the place! And I’ll know what it is!ReplyCancel

  • Karen - October 29, 2017 - 12:55 PM

    OMG Laurel you are The Curation Sensation That’s Sweeping The Nation! This is one of your best ever and you’re right. Poor disrespected orange! A little orange is so juicy, so individual, so NOT beige and grey and “soothing”! Blah to the safe! Bring on the confidence! Vive l’orange!

    • Laurel Bern - October 29, 2017 - 2:06 PM

      Oh, I like that! Curation Sensation That’s Sweeping The Nation! Are you a copywriter? ReplyCancel

  • Julie S - October 29, 2017 - 11:05 AM

    I love a little bit of good orange! It’s in my home along with a bit of ochre to liven up my black/brown/cream, blues, and greens.

    You should know that in my dreams last night my subconscious conjured up The Perfect Man and named him… Ben Pentreath. He was nothing like the real Ben but he was very wonderful.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 29, 2017 - 2:05 PM

      Hi Julie,

      That’s a funny dream. When you’re done with your dream man, can you send him over? lolReplyCancel

  • Jessica - October 29, 2017 - 10:18 AM

    Thanks for this! I think your blog inspired me to paint my son’s room in bm buttered yam. Everyone thought I was crazy, but it’s wonderful and I get a ton of complements on it. Bright and cozy and a wonderful background for toys (even makes toy clutter love ok good!)ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 29, 2017 - 2:03 PM

      Hi Jessica,

      Sounds wonderful. I love golds of all kinds. and they have fallen out of favor, but every one I’ve ever used has made the room look sensational!ReplyCancel

  • Christine Morris - October 29, 2017 - 8:13 AM

    Capodimonte is an Italian pottery. I had a pair of rose petals candle sticks that l bought in Italy in ’81. They easily chipped and sadly I got rid of them somewhere during my many household moves. Now I’m surprised at the prices for Capodimonte on Etsy and eBay.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 29, 2017 - 2:02 PM

      Ahh… thank you for educating me on that word. As for pricing. That is the way of the world with everything. And after a $14,000 handbag $135 for a lovely, unique jar doesn’t seem so bad, to me. :]ReplyCancel

  • Michele - October 29, 2017 - 4:25 AM

    Good morning from Norway, Laurel! Thanks for the post. We have moved into our new farm house, and the colours for the living room/kitchen are (you see it coming…) blue, brown and orange. So great with some more ideas and examples. Unfortunately we are fairly broke just now – it’s this time in the house build where there are still lots of bills coming in, and you don’t have the energy anymore to go out and make some money ;)! Oh well, a girl can at least dream, scheme and be inspired by your post. Have a great and happy Sunday!ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 29, 2017 - 2:00 PM

      Hi Michele,

      Oh, I’ve been there. NO MONEY to do anything with and much frustration. On the other hand, it gives you time to figure things out and not rush into doing something that might be a mistake.ReplyCancel

  • joanna pearson - October 29, 2017 - 3:42 AM

    How I agree, Laurel! for too long orange has been the ugly duckling colour of the

    commercial interior world.

    It is a colour to warm ones hands on & your beautiful images, illustrate that, used

    effectively, it becomes a swan.

    Who, amongst us, hasn’t swooned at a sunset or the autumnal bounty around us & the

    rich colours of red, orange & browns? Colours, that are fabulous against a moody

    backdrop of bruised, blue-black clouds & equally so, against a bright blue sky & livid

    green grass.

    So, time to bring orange in from the cold. An orange renaissance is long overdue & thank

    you, laurel, for leading the charge.ReplyCancel

    • Laurel Bern - October 29, 2017 - 1:59 PM

      You’re such a poet Joanna! Thanks for making me smile!ReplyCancel

  • Dianne Lindsey McClung - October 29, 2017 - 12:07 AM

    I love orange and there’s a bit of it in our Sevres Blue living room. Enjoyed your blog post about one of my favorite colors, thanks!ReplyCancel