Lighting Design Tips

Pantone Marsala color of yearPantone, a company that is known as the worldwide authority on color, chooses an annual Color of the Year.  This year’s Color of the Year is Marsala, described by the company as “a naturally robust and earthy wine red.”

Many will see Marsala as a welcome change from last year’s Color of the Year, Radiant Orchid, which was a more feminine color and had a more limited appeal.  According to Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director of the Pantone Color Institute, “This hearty, yet stylish tone is universally appealing and translates easily to fashion, beauty, industrial design, home furnishings and interiors.”

The rich red-brown hue of Marsala brings color warmth into home interiors.  It’s a versatile color that can be combined with a variety of other colors, from taupe and gray to amber and golden yellow to turquoise and teal.  Here’s a look at suggested Marsala color pairings from Pantone.

Pantone Marsala color pairings

Laurie Gross, Certified Lighting Consultant and president of Gross Electric in Toledo, OH, believes that Marsala is versatile enough to coordinate with any lighting fixture finish.  “Because it works so well with many different color palettes, any finish color would work,” she says.  “It looks great with all of them!”G14_5475_sm

Color expert Donna Frasca of Decorating by Donna in Charlotte, NC, shared her thoughts with EnLIGHTenment Magazine on how to coordinate lighting with Marsala.  According to her, “The earthiness of Marsala is a perfect match for copper.  Gold and brass would be great runners-up as complementary finishes, while Oil-Rubbed Bronze could be used to create visual drama.”

Several lighting manufacturers have also introduced the color into their lamp designs.  Portable table lamps, such as the ones shown here, are a great way to bring this trendy color into your home decor.

Troy GS800-IR table lamp        Minka 10865-2 table lamp        Troy GS300-DR table lamp

Both Eiseman and Frasca see Marsala as a good color choice for kitchens.  Eiseman says, “Nurturing and fulfilling, Marsala is a natural fit for the kitchen and dining room.”  Frasca also recommends Marsala as a “very sexy and very cozy” color for your master bedroom.

If you are leery of using such a dark color on your walls, there are other ways to integrate Marsala into your interior decorating.  In the kitchen or dining room, incorporate the color into your centerpiece, serving dishes, or table linens.  For your living room or bedroom, choose an area rug, throw pillows, or drapery that has Marsala in its pattern.  Another way to bring out the color tone in your decor is to choose mahogany or cherry wood furniture.

Whether using this rich hue as your primary room color or as an accent, Marsala is a color trend that can easily be introduced into any decor.