Colour in the Georgian Home

Many colours in the Georgian era were muted because vibrant chemical dyes were not yet available, but a few stronger colours were used. Pastel colours were used in most rooms, with darker shades used in the dining room. Stronger colours were expensive and so were used for details or highlights. The cheapest and therefore most typical colours were shades of grey, light blue, brown and olive green. Orange, pink and lemon yellow were a little more expensive. Whites at this time were slightly grey or yellow.

Stronger colours were expensive and so were used for details or highlights. Fixtures and fittings were also used to introduce colour.

On the outside of houses, ironwork was blue or steel blue, doors were green or blue, and windows dark brown in plain paint or grained.

In the 1730s and 40s some strong colours were used; crimson, green and blue.

The 1750s and 60s saw paler colours such as bright pea green, sky blue, yellows, deep greens, and then chocolate for doors, skirting and other woodwork.

Robert Adam was a key influence in the 1770s and 80s with lighter, more elegant ceilings a key feature. These were painted in 'Wedgwood' patterns with white against a coloured background. Rather than pastels, typical colours were bright blues, greens, browns, lilacs and yellows. Fabrics were in the same colours.

Georgian colours