Notice how breezy and cool Sofia Coppola looks in this photo snapped for House & Garden? Yeah, me neither. I'm too busy ogling her sky blue sofa.
One of the most repeated pieces of design advice I hear is to invest in a well-made sofa in a solid neutral colour. It's a great tip — even I've said it myself. And when I bought my sofa, I followed this advice and purchased a sleek modern shape in a sensible dark grey fabric. It's a great sofa, but when I see beautiful rooms showcasing a sofa in a gorgeous eye-catching colour, I admit I get a little wistful.
I have a particularly soft spot for sofas in any shade of blue. Now, some will argue that blue is a neutral. Certain shades, anyway. When I asked H&H senior design editor Margot Austin if she thought pale blue could be considered a neutral, she was quiet for a few seconds, then answered: "Sure. It's the colour of the sky, it goes with everything."
Still, blue is no beige. A beige sofa would disappear in this room and let the walls and the window coverings steal the spotlight. This robin's egg blue camelback style has no such plans; it's the first thing you notice, and the ultra-pretty shade gives the traditional room a cheeky lighthearted twist.
Indeed, in a neutral setting, blue can become the lively hit of colour.
Or the perfect background for a simple print.
In a modern setting, primary blue fits the mood. A rich shade can draw the right kind of attention to a sofa in a unique shape or make a standard silhouette feel special. And if your sofa is doing all that, then the rest of the room can get away with being sparse.
Not that it has to. In any hue, blue is a cheerful, livable colour, so why not go for it? I wish I had.
For more blue inspiration, see our Blue Rooms photo gallery.
1. House & Garden via Apartment Therapy
2. Photography by Melanie Acevedo
3. Pebble Beach, Katie Ridder
4. Real Simple via The Little House in the City blog, photography by Ditte Isager
5. Photography by Melanie Acevedo
6. Photography by Roland Bello