If anybody has the power to make us rethink color conventions, it is Dolly Parton – and she's just worked her influence on the most misunderstood tone of all: beige.
This controversial neutral has a way of dividing designers' opinions, and consequently, it's often dubbed as 'boring,' but the country music icon makes it look effortlessly stylish.
Dolly, who resides on the outskirts of the CM capital, Nashville, Tennessee (where else?), shared a glimpse of her traditional yet low-key luxe living space, anchored by a beige wallpaper that complements her cream accent chair, gold accents, and a classic snake plant.
The warming space offers all the encouragement we need to rewrite color conventions and decorate with beige in abundance – and we're not alone in our desire to give this hue a chance.
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'Beige has such a bland essence, but it is really anything but. It's as neutral as white but has a warmth that makes your room feel calm. It's also more 'neutral' than gray or bright white,' says designer Sarah Storms.
While it's unlikely that Dolly specially designed her space with the 'warm minimalism' or 'California cool design trend' at the forefront of her agenda, Sarah explains how beige allows us to tap into these sought-after aesthetics – offering new ways to keep this color fresh for 2024.
Warm minimalism and California cool are deeply rooted in warm, creamy, beige walls (often lime-washed). I love styling this with natural textured rugs, wood accents, leather, and lots of natural greenery [much like Dolly],' she explains. And Dolly's indoor plant isn't the only thing that works well with this hue.
'Antiqued or unlacquered brass works perfectly with beige. I'd stay away from cool metals like nickel. Also, use black sparingly. Too much can feel heavy.'
Sarah Storms is an interior designer based in Maplewood, New Jersey. After a career that spanned the US and Europe, Sarah launched her studio in January 2021 – allowing her unique background and creative passion for interiors, textiles, and color to shine through.
Designer Nureed Saeed from Nu Interiors, agrees. 'Beige, when mixed with tan, brown, black, and white, is the perfect color to complement that modern boho California palette that people love and is trending still,' she emphasizes.
Design and color trends aside, Nureed adds that beige has the ability to stand the test of time, but in this case, finding the perfect eternal shade is key.
Nureed is the owner and creative director of Nu Interiors, a full-service interior design and remodeling project management resource specializing in kitchen and bathroom renovations, serving clients across California and New Jersey.
'When beige is a little muted, it can many times be a more functional choice for upholstery compared to white. However, just like gray, beige can read orange, yellow, or green, so if looking for something neutral, steer toward ones that have more gray in them, but don't let it read too gray, or else it won't have that updated feel,' she says.
This tranquil, mid-tone classic tan beige is warm minimalism perfection. And with such a handy (and accessible) sample, we can easily see if this shade is right for our spaces.
This artificial snake plant offers the beauty of Dolly's greenery without the maintenance, what more could we need?
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Megan is the News and Trends Editor at Homes & Gardens. She first joined Future Plc as a News Writer across their interiors titles, including Livingetc and Real Homes. As the News Editor, she often focuses on emerging microtrends, sleep and wellbeing stories, and celebrity-focused pieces. Before joining Future, Megan worked as a News Explainer at The Telegraph, following her MA in International Journalism at the University of Leeds. During her BA in English Literature and Creative Writing, she gained writing experience in the US while studying in New York. Megan also focused on travel writing during her time living in Paris, where she produced content for a French travel site. She currently lives in London with her antique typewriter and an expansive collection of houseplants.
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