I’m fascinated by the work and world of Danish textile designer Margrethe Odgaard. She has collaborated with most of the major Scandinavian brands: Muuto, Hay, Kvadrat, Montana; and has featured on these pages many times. As well as her proficiency with materials and fabrics, she is also described as a colour alchemist, creating contemporary shades and palettes for companies looking to add coherence to their product ranges.
Recently, on a trip to Stockholm, I was given a copy of her book Shades Of Light, it’s a carefully curated collection of 276 colours, which all come into their own in the delicate intensity of Nordic light. It’s literally pages and pages of different-coloured swatches on white backgrounds, stripped of all other visual interference so you can simply absorb the hues therein and the way they interact. It may sound less than riveting to some, but I find it utterly transporting.
It started me thinking about our relationship with colour and the way we use it in our homes – as Odgaard points out, light has such an effect on how we perceive different tones – and this is indeed the case when it comes to the shades we choose to put on the walls, furniture and other pieces we surround ourselves with.
As a result of all this contemplation, this month’s magazine became a celebration of all things colour. Riotous combinations, shockingly bright shades, barely there neutrals, intricate patterns and graphic prints, they’re all here! We wanted this issue to be an assault on the senses, but in a good way, of course…
There’s a slew of inspiring international homes, peppered with ideas on how you can use palettes in creative ways, our seasonal guide to the best wallcoverings and fabrics, trend forecaster Li Edelkoort writes about the colourful home of the future and we reveal the story of our exciting new paint range with Crown.
In the foreword to her book, Odgaard quotes the French Symbolist painter Gustave Moreau: ‘Note one thing well: you must think through colour, have imagination in it. If you don’t have imagination, your colour will never be beautiful. Colour must be thought, imagined, dreamed.’ It’s such a beautiful and perceptive summation of how we should approach colour and seems to fit with this issue perfectly. Go dream…
In this month’s issue you’ll find…
- Our big decorating special – the latest looks and what to buy now
- 76 unmissable fabrics and wallpapers for spring
- The joy of colour – how to energise your home
- Next in fashion – from Erdem dressing walls to Louboutin in focus
- Introducing the ELLE Decoration paint range
- PLUS! Kitchen Guide 2020, free inside
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