I generally like to avoid being overly led by trends. My rebellious side kicks against being told what to like, and so, over the past few years, I haven’t given much thought to Dulux’s ‘Colour of the Year’ announcement. However, with a lot fewer distractions this year, I admit that I had a certain sense of anticipation as I tapped through the Instagram stories to the big reveal.
And my initial reaction? ‘Huh… but that’s barely even a colour’. Yep, it’s certainly not one for colour lovers – and that is an identity I usually veer towards.
However, as it tends to go with these things, it was only a couple of hours before my mind had wandered off to mentally repaint the walls of my flat; imagining a minimalistic life cocooned in Brave Ground. I realise I’m in danger of sounding like I’ve simply gobbled up the press release, but I think they’ve pitched this one pretty close to perfect.
There’s a reason why people were drawn to baking sourdough and growing tomatoes during lockdown. Whether we like it or not, a lot of us have been forced to slow our pace of life. This calming shade seems a complementary backdrop for idealistic slow living rituals, like brewing loose leaf tea, making percolator coffee and baking banana bread. It was embracing small joys like this that helped me cope with lockdown.
Robbed of our usual routines, we’ve had to strip our lives back to basics. What better visual metaphor than the jumbles of unwanted items piled outside every tenth house at the peak of the pandemic. Now we’re rebuilding, carefully.
More aware than ever of our human footprint and the fine balance between us and the natural world, many of us want to make more considered, sustainable choices. Unsurprisingly, this earthy hue embraces nature. In my eyes, it goes hand in hand with unrefined, natural materials and textures, like washed linen and unvarnished wood, and a colour palette of natural dyes.
We’re looking for comfort, from our elasticated waistbands as well as our homes. Now is the time for soft, unfussy furniture to dive onto, get cosy and weather the storm. Undemanding and warm, Brave Ground matches the mood.
I’m sure there’s a tribe who will reject this ‘colour of the year’ in favour of brightening up a bleak picture with liberal use of vibrant colour. I don’t think the two approaches are necessarily at odds, though. I think Brave Ground has the potential take the edge off, or dare I say, ‘ground’ brighter colours, which is probably a welcome feeling for a lot of us right now.
Of course, it’s quite possible that a combination of world events and a lot of extra pondering time have led me to rave undeservedly about what amounts to a pretty basic neutral… Am I projecting a significance that’s not there? What do you think?