I came across an email earlier this week from Houzz which talked about decorating with “The Worlds Ugliest Colour.” Of course, it captured my attention instantly.
The search has been on to identify the ugliest colour for use on Australian cigarette packets to discourage smoking.
The result: Pantone 448 C – an interesting mix of brown and olive green.
I LOVED this topic and article because I am fascinated by colour associations and colour psychology.
I believe that this colour would work well on cigarette packages, not because it’s ugly (as well proven in the Houzz article), but because to me it looks like cigarette tar from the old Quit ads. Yuck!
Colour association is so incredibly powerful and I see (and hear) it all the time from clients in comments like “that reminds me of…”.
When I come across attraction or resistance to a colour from a client that is based solely on emotion, I never question or try to fight it but I am always fascinated by it.
It is irrelevant if I think the association is correct or not, the important thing is that the association is there and if it’s negative, it will often be very strong. When people don’t like a colour, they REALLY don’t like that colour.
That’s why so many home owners paint their homes a neutral colour when they want to sell it. They assume these are the least offensive colours and they are correct.
The problem then is how to make a neutral home stand out from all of the other neutral homes also for sale.
Very few people are likely to paint their home in the Pantone 448 C colour equivelant.
The Houzz article showed this colour used successfully in a number of homes. The secret to their success was the styling and furniture done by an interior designer.
The hardest homes to sell are vacant ones, those without styling and furniture no matter what colour they are painted.
I don’t believe there are pretty or ugly colours. There are certainly popular and trendy ones but the success of any colour scheme is how it is put together.
What associations do you have with colour and do you think Pantone 448 C is the world’s ugliest colour? I’d love to hear in the comments below.
Click here to read the Houzz article.
I’m always looking for more blog topic ideas. If you could pick my design brain, what would you like to know about preparing your home for sale, choosing paint colours or renovating your property? Let me know below, I’d love to hear from you.