Neale Whi­taker:

De­sign bea­con goes green.

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - CONTENTS -

Ker­mit the Frog knew a thing or two. It ain’t easy be­ing green, even if it was “big like an ocean or tall like a tree”. My gen­er­a­tion has al­ways had an un­easy re­la­tion­ship with green things. Av­o­cado bath suites. Wicked witches. Marzi­pan. As a kid, green stood for ev­ery­thing sen­si­ble, such as school uni­forms and Brus­sels sprouts, but it was never fun. My mother wouldn’t travel in green cars (she claimed they were more likely to crash) and later on, as a cub edi­tor, I was told that green magazine cov­ers would wither and die on the news­stand. And how about that old adage “blue and green should never be seen”? Mother Na­ture didn’t get that memo.

But a new gen­er­a­tion has no such reser­va­tions. If blue was last year’s black, then green is proudly – ver­dantly – this year’s blue. Global colour au­thor­ity Pan­tone has cho­sen “Green­ery” as its 2017 Colour of the Year, and it’s hard to dis­pute Pan­tone ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor Leatrice Eise­man when she says, “Green­ery pro­vides us with the re­as­sur­ance we yearn for amid a tu­mul­tuous so­cial and po­lit­i­cal en­vi­ron­ment.” If only a colour re­ally could heal the world.

Un­less you’ve been sleep­ing on the job, you’ll have no­ticed the abun­dance of green home­wares around right now. Vari­a­tions of Mar­tinique wall­pa­per, orig­i­nally de­signed for The Bev­erly Hills Ho­tel, are play­ing on re­peat in many in­te­ri­ors, as are an oa­sis of palm-leaf prints. And there’s a lot of jade green, a pop­u­lar shade in the Art Deco era that teams well with the cur­rent Deco-in­spired fur­ni­ture and light­ing.

Our in­te­rior de­sign­ers have em­braced the green-house ef­fect. Sarah-Jane Pyke of Syd­ney’s Arent&Pyke likes olive greens for their “murky depth that sits beau­ti­fully with white and grey”. Mel­bourne-based Fiona Lynch sug­gests choos­ing “greens with a grey tone, and stay away from lime greens that are too harsh and will date”. Bris­bane’s Anna Spiro likes a tonal ap­proach: “Soft mint, lay­ered with deeper tones of green, sea foam, taupe and white.”

The ad­vice is to ex­per­i­ment and go gen­tly at first. For a quick green fix, Spiro sug­gests “mis­matched cush­ions in an ar­ray of green pat­terns or some green lamp­shades. Green goes with most colours and I’m par­tic­u­larly fond of blue and green mixed to­gether.”

She didn’t get the memo ei­ther. Neale Whi­taker is edi­tor-in-chief of Vogue Liv­ing.

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