Every year, Pantone comes out with their featured annual colour and for the first time, the choice is causing quite a stir in the design industry. This year’s Pantone colour of the year is—wait for it!—Marsala. Huh? What’s Marsala? And what’s the big deal, anyway? Apparently, Marsala is one of those shades you either love or really, really hate.


Many of the marsala haters associate the pick with the hunter green-burgundy trend of the 80s. And in that combo, the shade does feel pretty dated and stale. But there’s another side to the marsala debate. As with style in general, everything old is eventually new again. Today’s Marsala, which has also been known as oxblood red, burgundy or wine back in the day, has a new cozy vintage feel that can really warm up a modern home. It’s a full bodied colour (just like the wine) and used as a statement making grounding colour it will bring sophistication to any space.

If you can only handle Marsala as an accent, then this is just the right shade for all of the neutrals in your decor. It’s especially beautiful with grey, brown or beige furniture. With very little effort, this pop of colour brings a hint of elegance to any room.

Consider any of these Marsala additions to your home decor:

  • wallpaper in the powder room
  • a tablecloth to dress up the dining room
  • pairing the colour with gold accents
  • a painted feature wall in a bedroom
  • pillows or a throw on the family room couch
  • picture frames on the nightstand
  • a flowering plant for the front hall
  • a table lamp on the buffet
  • pairing it with navy for a classic look
  • a side chair in your living room
  • a textured area rug to warm up the den or rec room
  • small with tea towels for the kitchen

Are you ready to use Pantone’s Colour of the Year in your home? Here are some choices you’ll love to live with. Marsala-001Paint colour:Benjamin Moore’s Pottery Red 2085-20 Wallpaper: Farrow and Ball’s Orangerie $260 USD per roll Pillow: Solid  Jag pillow from EQ3 $29.99 All other items from Urban Barn. Frames $14-$19, Sabina throw $69, Beckham Toss pillow $49, Potted faux orchid reg $49 (on sale now for $24.99), Chain link lamp reg $199 (on sale now for $99.99) Photo courtesy of Pantone

About the author

Lisa Goulet

Lisa is an Ottawa based certified interior decorator, who’s married with four children and who also runs her own interior decorating company. In her spare time she blogs, tweets, pins and instagrams to stay connected with clients, peers and others in the design field. Follow her along as she decorates and renovates any room she can get her hands on, sharing some great advice along the way.

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