Emerald – The Color for 2013

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Pantone, the color standards provider for the design industry, has selected a lush, vivid green called “Emerald” for the 2013 Color of the Year. Already appearing on fashion runways, Emerald is set to take off in interior design as well. The last time a deep green had a fashion moment was in the 1980’s, but the greens of that era were darker and duller than Emerald. After many years of limes and yellow-greens, we’re ready for a green with a rich vibrancy and a cooler hue.

Emerald Green Temple Jars

Emerald green has for centuries represented new growth and prosperity, new life, healing, and unity. Since ancient times emeralds have been prized for their luminous, mysterious green color. Jewel greens evoke exotic, jungle locales and the riches of faraway lands. Emerald has always been complementary to red, but it is looking very fresh when combined with peacock blue, indigo and aqua. Bold patterns accentuate the color and keep it modern and up to date.

Nanjing Jade

Source: designfolly.com via Kerry on Pinterest

Emerald Drapery and Chinoiserie by Miles Redd, at Kips Bay
Emerald Drapery and Chinoiserie by Miles Redd, at Kips Bay

To incorporate Emerald in to your home, try painting a small room such as a foyer or powder room a deep, glossy emerald green. Add graphic art prints or display a collection against the richly colored walls for dramatic impact.

Emerald Lacquer Sitting Room by Thom Filicia
Emerald Lacquer Sitting Room by Thom Filicia

If you have an accent wall, try a boldly patterned leafy wallpaper.

Polo Lounge wallpaper

In a bedroom, a graphic print in Emerald and white is a perfect update to the bed.


If you have a neutral room, punch it up with bold Emerald accessories and pillow fabrics that use the color with bright teal or aqua. Clean neutrals such as white, ivory or seagrass tones set the new green off perfectly. A little Emerald can go a long way – but it’s very easy to live with, so don’t be afraid to create a splash with vivid, rich and mysterious Emerald in your home.


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