Vintage Colour Palettes


Creating A Vintage Palette

Vintage Benajmin Moore paint advertisement, circa 1950s.
Authentic vintage colours are soft and rich, and when combined in the right away, can produce a beautiful vista of vintage décor in your home. To establish a vintage colour palette you can follow a number of different methods. In general they will all produce similar results, but it’s best to make sure you are starting out with a true vintage central colour, around which to build your palette, for your vintage home décor to be authentic.
Finding a vintage palette can be as simple as checking out Pinterest, but constructing a vintage colour palette yourself is about more than simply selecting colours or patterns from vintage magazine ads or photographs—though it’s a good place to start. You can find a vintage image that speaks to the vintage décor you are trying to establish and then select a series of colours directly from the image (see below).


To put together an authentic palette a little research into historical pigments is necessary, as the beautiful range of colours we associate with vintage home décor were derived from paints produced in an era that was technologically different from the world of paint we know today. Some of the truest vintage hues available for modern paint and fabric are replicated by using the same natural pigment bases used in their historical period. Common colours that will become important components of any vintage colour palette include earthy browns, golds, and taupes, mixed in with blues and greys for subdued palettes that are inspired by nature. Combine these types of colours with warm woods, natural fibres, bronze finishes and pops of rosy pigments.
If you want to seek out true vintage paint colours for your décor palette, it might be a good idea to start with a paint or fabric company that has dedicated heritage or vintage lines and collections. A company that already works with vintage colours will have pre-designed colour palettes (see below) that can help you with your vintage décor. Otherwise, pickup any inspiring vintage home décor image, take a picture with your smart phone, and then use a colour matching paint app to pinpoint a specific paint colour and brand that is the nearest match. Also, remember the low contrast look of vintage pigments will be accentuated by matte paints, so opt for a flat or matte finish when considering a vintage palette.
Dulux Heritage Series Palette