That’s right folks, it's (almost) officially fall. A time for oversized sweaters, cozy blankets, and of course reinventing the perfect seasonal home space. Whether you’re looking to start from scratch this year with new furniture or looking to add a pop of color to your walls, cobalt blue may be the surprising color you need to spice up your home.
And though this vibrant hue is a bit of a departure from the usual autumn colors, it is certainly making a surprise appearance in apartments and homes everywhere. Because of its versatility and serene appeal, this dark sea blue serves as a subtle reminder of those sunny summer ocean views many will miss come the colder months ahead, but that doesn't mean that you can’t make it fall-forward for 2022.
“Cobalt is on the rise in home design because we’re entering a postmodern movement. Of course, light neutrals aren’t going anywhere, but people are starting to experiment with bolder hues,” says Sarai Reed, Homesense design consultant, to TZR.
For starters, cobalt is inviting, electrifying, and pairs well with warm neutral seasonal colors like beiges, nudes and browns, positioning it to likely go viral in the near future. Whether via couches or walls, the color adds a pop of vibrancy to any home aesthetic ranging from midcentury and minimalist to eclectic maximalist.
And though this trendy rich shade can easily be paired off with neutral home designs, it also lends itself to bold and luxurious aesthetics. Think Regency Era, but with a modernized twist, cobalt blue accents can either be “dressed up or down,” making this vibrant color equal parts sophisticated and playful.
So if you’re looking for a change to your humble abode this fall, check out these tips from Reed, who unpacks all of the details of the cobalt blue craze and how to work it easily into your home.
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Go Big — Or Small
“Cobalt blue can be used on almost any scale,” says Reed. “It works well as an accent color, but is also great in small spaces when applied in big ways. I’ve seen some designers use wall-to-wall cobalt tile for a monochromatic bathroom. It was honestly mesmerizing. I think it depends on the statement you are trying to make.”
The great part about this coral sea blue is that it can work for any home aesthetic from rustic, minimalistic, coastal, bohemian, mid-century modern, or maximalists, to name a few.
“Minimalism and cobalt go together so well, but I’ve seen it look great in other spaces too,” says Reed. “I have a cobalt blue vase on my bookshelf that I always get lots of compliments on. I also think it looks great in textiles like toss pillows or rugs. Certain shades of blue can also lend themselves to a coastal vibe which is really trending at the moment. There’s something about cobalt that makes me think of those stunning blue rooftops in the Greek Isles.”
Create Some Calm
Reed goes on to say explain her appreciation for how well cobalt can be paired with greenery and lush outdoor spaces. “I could see myself adding cobalt accents to my patio seating area,” she quips. “I love punchy, primary colors in lush outdoor spaces so something like a cobalt outdoor coffee table, bench, or umbrella really resonates with me. It would really stand out from the surrounding greenery,” she says.
Now that a majority of our offices are in the comfort of our humble abodes, what’s great about this vibrant color is that it has a direct impact on how we feel mentally and physically, easily making our work-from-home experiences more enjoyable. Reed sees cobalt as calming and serene amid a chaotic work schedule: “I find cobalt really energizing, but I also think that it can be really calming given that it’s in the blue color family. We typically associate the color blue with serenity.”
Balance Out The Blue
Because cobalt blue is a bold and vibrant color, Reed recommends pairing it off with neutrals to really accentuate its vibrancy. “I would not pair cobalt with any other bright primary colors,” she says. “I would steer clear of vibrant reds and yellows, but I think it can look really nice with nudes, neutrals, and certain secondary colors in the orange or green color families. I especially like cobalt when paired with warm earth tones.”