Colours of Love

The Shades of Love

by Marica Fick

While I am not a huge fan of ole St Valentine’s Day (far too many corny clipart and cheesy soft toys for my liking), we could not let the day of romance slip by without sharing some kind of love-tinted content.

Previous years we have shared a few no-cheese Valentine’s Day ideas including a post on Galentine’s Day (in my opinion a far superior celebration), a stylish Valentine’s Day picnic, and of course our very punny V-Day printable gift tags. The gift tags are still available to download if you are looking for a cute something to round off your loved one’s gift.

source: the interior editor

This year, we thought it might be a good idea to put an interiors spin on our Valentine’s Day post. A side note – do yourself a favour… DO NOT google “romantic interior“. The search results looked like a cream lace bomb exploded all over a powder-pink french boudoir – not my idea of romantic… or a tasteful interior for that matter.

Romance… it is a difficult emotion to define in an interior. What might be conducive to love and romance for some, might be quite a turn-off for others. When it comes to a visual representation of love we frequently make a direct beeline for the cliched. So let’s avoid defining a “romantic interior” for today and rather simplify it to the colours that are often said to represent love. I am, of course, referring to RED, PINK and, to a lesser degree, PURPLE.

Let’s look at some of the suggested colour symbolism and psychology connected to these 3 colours:


Red is a very emotionally charged colour. It is the colour of both fire and blood. It is often associated with energy, war, danger, power, confidence as well as passion, desire, and love.

It has even been suggested that red has the ability to “enhance human metabolism, increase respiration rate, and raise blood pressure.” Red is a colour with high visibility. In fact, it is quite difficult to miss – consequently red is often used on stop signs, fire equipment, etc.


As red is such a bold and dynamic colour one should use it sparingly. It is an excellent choice for a feature piece as the eye will immediately be drawn to it. A statement chair or decorative accessory would make your interior pop. Combine it with colours that will neutralise its intensity. Pair it with a cooling blue, freshen it up with white, or deepen the mood with charcoal or black.


A combination of passionate red and white purity, pink signifies romance, unconditional love, femininity and friendship.

Pink is said to have a calming effect that can ease feelings of anger, aggression and neglect. Some studies confirm that high amounts of pink can even create a feeling of physical weakness in people.


From hot Cerise Pink to the softer more fleshy Blushes, there are many shades and hues of pink to choose from. If you opt for a bolder, brighter pink take cue from the red tips – use it as a feature colour and in moderation.

As we’ve mentioned in our Trend Alert blog post on Blush Pink works well with greys, whites, and other muted pastel shades like pale sage greens. This rosy colour also looks beautiful when combined with lighter Scandinavian woods and warm metals like copper or rose gold. If you are afraid of creating an excessively feminine space, use a more neutral colour as a base and only incorporate Blush as an accent or pair it with a traditionally more masculine colour like black or grey for a sharp contrast.


Purple might not be the first colour that comes to mind when thinking of love or Valentine’s Day, yet it has one or two romantic roots. A darker deeper purple is often associated with opulence, drama, and fantasy and is therefore closely linked with sensuality and the erotic. On the other hand, light purples such as Lilacs and Lavenders are linked to romance and nostalgia.


As a darker purple can bring about feelings of oppression and depression, it would be wise to once again use it in moderation. Don’t go painting all your walls with the stuff! Freshen it up your space by using white or light-coloured neutrals as a backdrop for your purple accent pieces. For a happy and bright colour scheme, why not pair it with a sunny complementary yellow. Check out our blog post on “Ultra Violet”, Pantone’s Colour of the Year 2018, for additional darker purple ideas.

Light purples, similar to the lighter pinks, pairs well with greys, whites, and other pastel shades.

source: house of hipsters
source: sarah richardson design
source: we heart
source: the glitter guide
source: sonja ols
source: inside out
source: the decorista

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