It recalls thoughts of vibrant spices, golden antique jewellery and exotic desert sands; of rich cashmere sweaters and autumn leaves. Mustard is that eternally perfect autumn tone which ushers in a new season after the hot months of summer, deepening in intensity as is goes.
LuxDeco’s newest collection Eaton Square embraces mustard (transferring it to a classic townhouse environment) and it seems like the design world is similarly in tune with the irresistible tone. This year’s Decorex produced a number of stands transformed by the sunny hue and we were pleased to receive news of René Dekker’s new Campden Hill Apartment. (The living room is a masterclass in mustard, using it for upholstery, lighting, cushions and curtains.)
From art to wallpaper, mustard is the transforming accent colour to get on board with this season.
Let’s start as we mean to go on: boldly. Mustard yellow upholstery (especially when realised in sumptuous velvet or rough silk) is such a smart way to perk up a space. It’s eye-catching without boasting, inviting, safely unisex and enhances both cool and warm neutrals (pairing it with greys equals modern; with creams, classic). It also has a maturity about it that transcends eras and feels sophisticated and as at home in a modern interior as it did in an Art Deco or Mid-century one.
If you’re new to the hue (or prefer a subtle approach), upholster an accent chair or a stool; if you’re a Maximalist, a sharp tuxedo sofa or a configurable design is uber-confident.
With one of its key elements being colour, art
is a no-brainer when it comes to introducing colour into your space. In fact, a canvas can be the only colourful thing in a space and still command the right kind of attention and thus establishing the colour palette of the entire space. (Art galleries are often minimalist in their design to allow the artwork to make the biggest impact.)
Klimt’s The Kiss, Gauguin’s tropical islands, Van Gogh’s Sunflowers, Rothko’s Saffron and Kandinsky and Malevich’s abstract compositions instantly come to mind so there should be no worry about the precedent previously set.
Opt for a mustard curtain fabric to enhance the natural light which comes into your home. Full-length silk drapes are an ultra-elegant choice for any space. Whether in a modern space like this Wendy Labrum office or a classic office (Michael S. Smith chose them for Natalie Massenet’s London home
), the look is nothing short of reviving. For a subtler way to channel the look, consider lining the base of your drapes with a wide mustard band (à la The Langham’s Sterling Suite
) or choosing a patterned drape fabric which uses mustard as an accent colour.
A solid mustard rug might be the only thing you need to add a touch of colour to your space and will make a strong anchor for a furniture arrangement.
But to add a little bit of interest to your room, discover the beauty that the rich hue can offer to textured and patterned rugs. Gestural rugs are the call of the day and shots of mustard throughout a neutral design channels Jackson Pollockesque vibes; fret and lattice designs are perfectly transitional and work well in black rooms; and a mustard Persian design would look particularly rich and spectacular in an eclectic scheme.
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Glamorous, edgy, classic, retro – mustard can lend its skills to most interior styles. Used frequently during the neoclassical period as well as the Mid-century days, it’s a somewhat of an unexpectedly versatile wall colour.
We love the idea of a pretty mustard blossom wallpaper for a touch of Eastern influence, a textural wall covering (like the Eldorado paper from Élitis) in a cool loft or this amazing fauna scene from De Gournay in a bathroom or formal dining room.
Who wants plain white everything when you can use colour? And that counts for tableware
too. Of course, we love a white service but there are times that a table can really be transformed with a contemporary addition.
We’ve been completely smitten with Marie Daâge’s painterly tableware since it arrived this season, and her keen eye for colour is a big part of that. Stripes, florals, nature scenes, checks – there is little that mustard can’t pull off. The look is suited to all seasons and celebrations too – for spring it can replace lemon as a grown up alternative to pastels, in summer it’s the perfect sunset hue, autumn is self-explanatory and its golden finish is perfectly suited to Christmas festivities.
Image Credit: 5MM
As with plain white tableware, glassware can sometimes be less-than-inspiring and might not add much to a tablescape. Don’t be intimidated into thinking that plain glasses are the only way to go. Many a dinner party has been made by a beautifully colour-coordinated spread, and that includes glasses.
Amber glass has reinvented itself over the years which brands like Versace turning to the tone for their stemware designs.
A decorative Oriental jar
, a candle
, a vase
or even a coffee table book
– the possibilities of mustard decor are limitless. Easily incorporated into an existing scheme, these pops of colour will refresh a vignette instantly. Teamed with dark tones, such as brown or black, the result is natural and earthy; with deep greys it’s decidedly modern; with teal it’s exotically eclectic; and with baby pink, channelling this year’s penchant for retro palettes.
Inviting mustard elevates traditional ikat, geometrics and mohair to new levels of sophistication thanks to the colour’s close relation to gold. (To the eye, mustard often reads as gold and who doesn’t love them some gold threads?) The Marcia cushion
is a refined variation on a typically casual look.
A cosy cashmere or mohair throw in the hue will pop against a cool slate grey sofa. Or, arguably, a classic beige roll-arm for that matter.