Designer Christina Murphy advises that “punches of color keep a room feeling youthful and engaging.” Orange is one of the most vivid punches of color you can use, but it doesn’t have to stand alone. If you love the vibrancy and cheer of orange rugs, but are scared to use it with other colors, just take a cue from all the interior designers who have been happily pairing orange rugs with the full spectrum of colors.
You might think that there are certain colors that orange rugs just shouldn’t be used with, but nothing can be farther from the truth. Orange doesn’t have to keep company with just the whites, blacks, grays and tans of the neutrals. An orange rug can work wonders when paired with other colors, making two colors in a room—instead of just one—to keep your rooms youthful and engaging!
Learn Color Composition from Nature and Great Art
If you ever find yourself wondering if orange or coral will work with blue, green or purple, all you have to do is to walk into a garden and look at the flowers. Or, if you prefer, look at art and particularly paintings. If you love the colors in the painting, then you know you will like putting the same colors together in your home.
Nature is the greatest teacher. Here you can see which shades of pink, yellow, purple and green go well with coral and orange.
Great art such as the The Assumption, 1596–97, by Guido Reni shows us which colors work well with orange. Image courtesy Architectural Digest.
1. Create a Calm Room with Soft Coral and Orange Rugs and Pale Green
Lightly colored coral orange rugs work well with pale green as in the light and airy living room designed by Melanie Elston. Image courtesy Melanie Elston.
In the above living room designer Melanie Elston paired the light coral and peach in the Oushak rug with equally pale mint on the walls. The two colors create energy because they are contrasting colors. A host of neutrals add depth and interest in the room.
Pairing an orange rug with the color green works very well. All you have to do is look around at nature where you will see that orange and coral flowers always have green leaves. Many people find this hard to envision and think that orange only goes well with red or yellow. Remember that orange is a warm color and red and yellow are also warm colors so when you pair warm colors together, you get a layering of complimentary colors. Now green is a cool color and when you pair orange and green you create contrast which means that each color will make the other color pop. In this living room Melanie Elston achieved a gorgeous balance between green walls and coral and orange rug by using light shades of both colors.
2. Create Pop with Orange Rugs and Blue
A light orange and green rug can allow the use of jewel tones that create pops of color. Image courtesy Garrison Hunter Interior Design.
If you would like to create a more vibrant and colorful room then take a cue from the living room pictured above. The distinct oranges and greens and navy blue of the orange rug provide the perfect foundation for the fiery coral chair and pillow and the jewel toned aqua blue pillow. The deep coral and blue draw the eye for that engaging feel described by Christina Murphy. The orange and green of the rug set the stage, allowing the more vibrant colors to play starring roles.
3. Create Energy with Orange Rugs and Purple
AD100 interior designer Jamie Drake paired an orange rug with purple to create a dynamic mood in this living room. Image courtesy Drake Design Associates.
You might think that pairing orange rugs with purple would be a big mistake, but you can see how well it works in the above room designed by AD100 interior designer Jamie Drake. In this contemporary living room Drake has paired orange and purple in several elements in this dazzling room. Both orange and purple are in the orange rug and also in the fabrics and the wild abstract painting. The combination is lyrical and artistic, definitely creating a feeling of energy and interest so well described by Christina Murphy.
4. Create Classic Rooms by pairing Orange Rugs with Pink and Blue
Blue and pink with coral and orange is a classic combination found in many oriental rugs as in this elegant dining room designed by AD 100 interior designer Timothy Corrigan. Image courtesy Timothy Corrigan.
In the dining room designed by Timothy Corrigan, a designer featured frequently in prestigious magazines, the expansive coral rug on the floor contains coral, orange and blues. The oranges range from near-red to a tan-orange, and the blues feature both light and dark shades. Pink walls, pale mint green door and white ceiling add refreshing contrast.
Orange and blue are another color combination that may seem like it will never work, but it is actually one of the easier combinations to pull off as in the above dining room by Corrigan. Blue and orange are contrasting colors, meaning that each highlights the other. When the two are paired together, they both pop.
In short, orange rugs can be paired with complimentary warm colors such as pink, coral, yellow and red or they can be paired with contrasting cool colors such as blue, purple and green. Depending on the mood, feeling and look you wish to create, take cues from one or more of the 4 color parings with orange rugs and create the room of your dreams.