You already know that neutral dishes are a minimalist’s best friend. But they’re also the secret weapon of the color-obsessed – yes, even those of us who love Lisa Frank and Josef Frank in equal amounts.
That’s because as much as a hurricane of hue might look great on your Pinterest board, real life demands some grounding elements. And nothing does that better than classic pieces in classic colors.
To demonstrate it perfectly, we tapped Georgie Hambright and Jennifer Hunter of the in-demand interior design firm J+G Design to show us how white dishes make for the ideal backdrop to a colorful and hyper-stylish table. They set up Hambright’s Manhattan table for a welcoming and bright get-together where the food truly shines. Here are their key takeaways.
A clean marble surface and white dinnerware sets the stage for color.
Start with a neutral backdrop:
“It’s a more clean, contemporary way to decorate with color,” the pair tells us. “It lets the colors you choose speak for themselves.” Plus, by keeping the classic pieces, well, classic, it opens up ample opportunities to switch up your color palette as often as you’d like. Hello, new looks for fall, winter, and spring...
A well-styled side table packs a punch.
Make your heirlooms pop:
“A lot of our clients inherit china sets from their families, so it’s great to have a nice white set to work with so you can mix and match to make it feel your own,” say the designers, who often mix in SNOWE dinnerware to bring a modern take to iconic pieces. (And speaking of heirlooms, that lamp has been in the Hambright family for years – isn’t it a gem?)
Choose unexpected pops of color:
Different shades don’t just need to come from accessories – including organic bursts of color is so important in building a rich and varied palette. J+G filled a low serving bowl with ripe pears, for a dose of greens, browns, and reds that feel warm and welcome against the neutral background. “It’s a more unexpected centerpiece than flowers – plus, after you entertain, you can make a tart of them!” Always thinking about the next dessert – these are women after our own heart.
Mix florals and animal prints -- just don't forget to anchor with neutrals.
Make friends with fabric:
“We’re designers, so we are obsessed with fabric,” say the pair – and hence, the Chinoiserie upholstery on the dining chair and pillow – with a modern take on blue and white on the adjacent cushion. Bringing in different patterns in a similar color family – and yes, this includes the chef’s towels, doubling as napkins – helps tie the theme together.
Decorate according to YOUR rules, not your dishes:
The designers point out that so many people use their dishware as the jumping off point for their decor scheme. Which is not a terrible idea, but can lead people to choose paint colors and furniture that suit one element, rather than one’s personal style. Meanwhile, classic white “never goes out of style,” they remind us. “We love the phrase ‘effortlessly elegant,’ and that’s really how we see these products.”
We, of course, are happy to return the compliment. Three cheers for these talented designers – we love seeing how they used SNOWE pieces to help spotlight their style. And are feeling suddenly inspired to go all out with a blue-inspired palette… and then go eat a pear tart.