Josh Brolin's controversial kitchen color might be our new favorite trend for 2024, and experts agree with us

A confident approach to color pays dividends in Josh Brolin's kitchen

Josh Brolin
(Image credit: Getty Images / Joe Maher / Stringer)

When American actor Josh Brolin, star of Dune, and a regular feature in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, revealed his Malibu home, we were pleasantly surprised to see that certain color feature throughout the space. Mood-lifting and warm, yellow brings energy, confidence, and optimism to the heart of the home. 

There is a touch of nostalgia appearing in schemes recently. Maybe intentional, maybe accidental, but the colors of the mid-1970s are back. Decorating with yellow is having a welcome renaissance.

At the lighter, bolder end of the spectrum, yellow is a color of optimism. ‘Yellow room ideas can create a mellow and uplifting interior all at the same time. It transports us back to long lazy sun-drenched days in the Californian sunshine and it can brighten us up on gloomy days.

A champion of decorating with so-called 'ugly colors', the interior design duo at Pierce & Ward, who crafted this yellow kitchen, often seeks beauty in earthy, muddier room color ideas, and they are certainly making a comeback throughout the US.

Yellow is a color that people are often scared to use, but it’s a fantastic color to really lift a space and create interest and features. It reflects all lights well, and makes a room feel very warm and inviting. It’s known to induce creativity and playfulness, so it’s fantastic for busy spaces, such as kitchens.

The versatility of yellow makes it a favorite element in decorating schemes for interior designers. In her book, Recipes for Decorating, Farrow & Ball's color consultant Joa Studholme notes that we are embracing stronger shades when decorating our homes. Much research has been done into how colors affect our mood. Yellow inspires optimism, creating a summery feel; team it with warm taupes and emerald green for a contemporary look.

Architect Richard Parr suggests choosing a natural palette that will enrich yellow, rather than work against it. ‘We recommend paring yellow with earthy and deep tones, from terracotta to rust, incorporating natural materials such as rich timbers and warm metals that will pick up and enhance the color.’

Choosing the right yellow can make all the difference, says Susan Deliss, textile designer and interior decorator. ‘To use yellow or ochre, you need to think of it as the “neutral” in the scheme; as a foil to set off other colors, not to overpower everything else. Avoid anything that says canary or banana and go for something that sets off the architecture or warms up a cooler space.’ 

In Brolin's kitchen, the soft, pale yellow is surprisingly calm and subtle; a modern version of the one from many '70s childhoods.

Shop the yellow edit

An earthy golden yellow is a shade that shines, but it also creates rooms that are rich and enveloping – it is a hue that's like a warm embrace. If you don't plan on repainting your kitchen, then shop the yellow edit instead. 

Jennifer Ebert

Jennifer is the Digital Editor at Homes & Gardens. Having worked in the interiors industry for a number of years, spanning many publications, she now hones her digital prowess on the 'best interiors website' in the world. Multi-skilled, Jennifer has worked in PR and marketing, and the occasional dabble in the social media, commercial and e-commerce space. Over the years, she has written about every area of the home, from compiling design houses from some of the best interior designers in the world to sourcing celebrity homes, reviewing appliances and even the odd news story or two.