Navy: the New Neutral


Black, grey and beige, step aside! There's a new neutral in town: navy. Think about it: What doesn't go with your favourite dark-wash jeans? Pastel-pink blouse? Check. Bold, patterned sweater? Check. If it works in your wardrobe, it will work in your home.

Which is why we turned to the runway to find inspiration for Shohini, who wrote to us for advice on how to freshen and feminize her home office. Gucci's fall/winter 2011 collection provided the perfect jumping off point from which to establish a new colour palette. Notice how the neutral navy allows the camel and teal accents to pop without reading as too busy or bold (see below).


A home office should be inspiring and comfortable. The goal is to create an environment that you want to spend time in, that encourages productivity. Shohini's space isn't functioning as well as it could. With all of the furniture pushed up against the walls, it feels more like a dance hall than a home office (see below, inset). By moving some of the case goods into the middle of the room and putting formerly wasted space to good use, the office immediately feels less closed in and gains a much-improved flow.

Fem Office Render (Before After).jpg

Shohini's other major problem is a lack of closed storage. The installation of built-in cabinetry, a soft drum pendant and other great statement pieces, including a stunning quartzite desk and iconic ghost chairs (see below), transform the space into a truly amazing environment in which to work.

Clockwise, from top left: Quartzite desk, chair, table lamp and area rug from Elte; magnifying glass from HomeSense; decorative wooden boxes and cut-crystal ball from 1212 Decor.