Color Guide: How to Use Orange

Orange is a blend of yellow and crimson, and in its truest form, it is an equal combination of the two. Nonetheless, it ranges from almost red to tangerine. It is the color of sunsets and tropical fruit, and it is undeniably symmetrical and daring.

Traditionally, orange is thought to excite activity, appetite and socialization. In decor it can be a bright pop of color or some more muted background color used to heat up a space.

It seems amazing with blue eyes, from navy to turquoise, but it cozies up nicely with grey too. In its more subdued form, it can blend into brownish (but be careful — that can become quite Brady Bunch really fast). Its peachy, terra-cotta and rust incarnations are really popular, particularly in dining rooms.

In its brighter, bolder hues, it is by far the most controversial color in the spectrum. Some people claim to have strong positive or negative emotions about orange than any color.

Orange Walls

This mellow orange brings out the color in the carpeting and adds a sense of coziness and warmth to a simply furnished room.

Whoa. These red-orange walls with bright white trim aren’t for the faint of the heart. A soaked, color-themed room similar to this has an old-fashioned feel. It reminds me of Napoleon’s quarters at the Louvre — not the color as much as the idea of doing a single-color room.

Zuniga Interiors

A brown-orange hue, otherwise called burnt orange, adds immediate heat.


Tangerine orange is a brilliant and cheerful alternative for genderless nurseries.

Case Design/Remodeling, Inc..

A pinkish salmon orange looks lovely with a fresh, springy green and bright white. Believe salmon with dill and dollops of sour cream.

Mercedes Corbell Design + Architecture

Orange + blue = BFFs.

Bertram Architects

Within an otherwise starkly modern space, orange adds a little warmth without forfeiting any design chops.

Lisa Hallett Taylor

This golden orange is almost a match with all the hardwood flooring and puts off the grey accents beautifully.

Orange Doors

Orange is a popular color for entrance doors. It pops up against the muted colours of the majority of houses and invites people to step right up. It works nicely for modern houses.

Cushman Design Group

Orange doors work nicely for cabin-style homes.

Lauren Liess Interiors

A tangerine-orange door looks amazing against hot white walls and stone frames.

Orange Accents

A recessed wall in crimson pops in this uber-modern kitchen, including personality and warmth.

These shelves with lit orange interiors would look amazing even without the matching orange sofa.

Maria Killam

Orange helps bring out the architecture of the fireplace within an otherwise architecturally muted room.

Maraya Interior Design

Shots of Orange

Vibrant orange seats glow against the charcoal within this room and include some much-needed color and cheer.

Tobi Fairley Interior Design

Orange with white and cream looks modern and clean.


The orange fireplace represents warmth and becomes the focus of this space. Blue and citrus accents are ideal complements.

Burnham Design

Cinnabar and turquoise are a classic match.

Cara Woodhouse Interiors LLC

Pop! Goes the orange sofa against the blue and green map.


Vibrant orange against bright sky blue is a color spectrum triumph.

Artistic Designs for Living

Orange with Its Friends

Pink and orange are festive and summery collectively — close enough to be cousins.

Orange always goes nicely with its citrusy whites, lime and lemon.

Eileen Kathryn Boyd Interiors

Orange mingles with pink, lime, magenta and kelly green. And somehow it all works.

Read on for our favorite paint selections.

Benjamin Moore

caramel latte

This muted terra-cotta orange has plenty of brown.

Benjamin Moore

Tomato Tango CSP-1145 Paint

It is either an extremely reddish orange or an extremely orange red. In any event, it is lovely and daring.

Benjamin Moore

tandoori CSP-1105

This is almost aluminum and may qualify as an orangey brown.

Benjamin Moore

Startling Orange 2016-10 Paint

Vibrant, “pow!” Orange.


Sherwin Williams Knockout Orange 6885

Getting closer to salmon.

Beth Connolly Interiors

Charlotte’s Locks No. 268 by Farrow & Ball

Not very carrot, but fairly bright. This would look great with bright white in a bright room.

Farrow & Ball

Farrow & Ball – The Lotus Papers – $275

Pinky orange background, like a sunset.


White Orange Floral Wall Covering

Muted tangerine flowers against white. This background adds color and texture.

Background – $250

In the right area — I’m presuming open beamed ceiling, lots of light, glistening hardwood flooring — that Jonathan Adler background may be an ideal shot of sunshine.

More manuals and ideas for decorating with orange

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