Duck egg blue: The best laid decorating plans begin with this hue

  • 01/09/2020
duck egg blue lounge
No matter what your style, this popular, classic colour will fit into your home. Vanessa Nouwens Airy Summer Lounge Resene Duck Egg Blue + Raindance + Slipstream + Unwind + QuarterTea. Photo Bryce Carleton. Photo credit: Resene

Created for Resene

Duck egg blue is among the most popular hues the decorating world has ever seen — and with good reason.

Complex yet flexible, it's a colour which allows professional and aspiring designers alike to bring a touch of pigmentation to their homes in a far more interesting way than your average neutral.

Duck egg blue at any strength can work in just about any space, and with seemingly endless suitable pairings, there's a reason why it's beloved by so many homeowners.

Renowned colour expert Debbie Abercrombie says duck egg blue "undoubtedly softens and calms a space". 

"The fact that it is very greyed-off is why it works so well, is less demanding and so easy to live with - but it still holds enough colour to grab your attention."

"Use duck egg blue as your guide to what other colours you should combine it with," suggests Abercrombie, though you'll certainly be spoilt for choice. 

"Everything from coastal colours like Resene Safehaven, to taupe browns like Resene Coffee Break, to warm whites like Resene Milk White and desert pinks like Resene Shabby Chic will work well. It's perfect for any room that is a retreat in your home, like a time out space, reading nook or nursery."

Here are just a few designer-approved ideas for taking this timeless classic colour into your own home.

Take it tonal

Choosing a layered monochromatic look for your home can be a standout strategy for bringing in some serious style in a way that's also quite soothing to the eye. According to colour psychologists, blues, in particular, are ideal for creating an oasis-like feel within what we consider to be 'restful rooms,' such as living rooms, bathrooms and bedrooms.

Duck egg blue: The best laid decorating plans begin with this hue
Photo credit: Resene

While tonal looks may have originated by drenching a space from tip to toe in a variety of strengths of a single hue, this highly desirable on-trend look has evolved to include others within the same 'colour family,' or adjacent ones. Working with Resene Duck Egg Blue in eighth, quarter, half, full, double and triple strengths can create a beautiful space in its own right, but you can also try blending it with a mix of lighter powder blues, greyed denim blues, darker purple blues and greener teal blues that all have a similar dusted nature. 

Don't be afraid to add some high-level contrast to the room, either. Painting a room in a richer duck egg blue with a single accent wall or furniture in a deep blue-black like Resene Blue Night, Resene Indian Ink or Resene Dark Knight will draw the eye and create further interest. Keep things simple with staple furniture pieces and bedding options in mid-range blue-greys like Resene Neutral Bay or Resene Half Raven and accessorise with violet-blues like Resene Hendrix, Resene Waikawa Grey and Resene Zephyr.

Take it back to nature

Incorporating natural elements alongside duck egg blue is great for creating calm. Neutral-toned woven rugs and cushions made from jute, rattan, wool, linen and cotton help incorporate nature into space through natural fibres while adding necessary elements of texture. Choose them sandy or almond tints such as Resene Solitaire, Resene Triple Pearl Lusta or Resene Half Biscotti or cloudy greys like Resene Delta, Resene Half Surrender or Resene Silver Chalice.

House plants, whether real or artificial, are great natural touches to add to a room that has duck egg blue walls. Green and blue are colours that have been representative of nature for millennia, and leafy greens complement this particular blue hue especially well. Try potting your plants in vessels painted in cheerful apricots like Resene Roxy and Resene Coyote or pale blues like Resene Cut Glass, Resene Tranquil and Resene Jet Stream to bring in richer colours in a way that's easily changeable whenever the mood strikes.

Gem Adams Blue 80s Dining Resene DuckEggBlue + RollingStone + HalfOrchidWhite + InsideBack + KalgoorieSands + Mochaccino + DarkSlate + GullGrey + Wafer + Wedgewood. Photo Wendy Fenwick
Gem Adams Blue 80s Dining Resene DuckEggBlue + RollingStone + HalfOrchidWhite + InsideBack + KalgoorieSands + Mochaccino + DarkSlate + GullGrey + Wafer + Wedgewood. Photo Wendy Fenwick Photo credit: Supplied/Resene.

Since many house plants thrive in humidity, a bathroom can be the perfect place to keep them. And with the spa-like bathroom trend being as strong as it is, taking a natural approach to this space through a 'duck egg blue plus plants' based colour palette is an ideal way to achieve it. Use Resene Duck Egg Blue on the walls paired with pot plants in cool whites like Resene Double Alabaster, Resene Half Black White or Resene Quarter White Pointer. Mix up your usual bathmats and linens with muted greens like Resene Pewter, Resene Nebula or Resene Paris White and try timber or bamboo flooring finished in Resene Colorwood Riverstone. 

Think pink

The cool tone of duck egg blue means that equally cool pale pinks and lilacs pair with it wonderfully. Using these tones together was popular in the 1980s. However, it's a palette that can also be easily modernised to work in a more contemporary setting. Being a mid-level tone, Resene Duck Egg Blue works great on walls as an anchor upon which lighter and darker colours can be layered through furnishings and décor items.

If you prefer a more modern approach to the overall design, liven up a living room with lighter timber furniture stained in Resene Colorwood Rock Salt, Resene Colorwood Whitewash or Resene Colorwood Light Greywash as well as sofas and occasional chairs in Resene Coral Tree, Resene Paper Doll and Resene New York Pink would look stunning. Top off the look with rugs, ottomans and cushions in Resene Ebb, Resene Lola and Resene Marionette to complete the look. 

For a more retro look, duck egg blue pairs beautifully with warm teak-toned mid-century modern timber furniture stained in natural tones with brass accents. Bring in smaller items like plant pots, vases, trays and pendant lamps which can be painted in Resene pink-based peaches to add a dash of warmth to the room. Try Resene Romantic and Resene Karry or opt for oranger options like Resene Corvette and Resene Tequila. Try this colour palette in a dining room where there is plenty of space for the colours to mix and mingle and go for a 'less is more' approach when it comes to accessorising.

For more ideas and inspiration check out the latest on trend looks online

This article was written by Resene for Newshub.