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Dulux celebrates 25 years of colour forecasting

04 May 2023

 Whilst the team behind the annual Dulux Colour Forecast finalise the colour palettes set to inspire Australia’s interior design trends for 2024, this year is more momentous than most as it marks the 25th anniversary of the Dulux Colour Forecast.

Led by the Dulux Colour Team that comprises of Colour and Communications Manager Andrea Lucena-Orr, Colour Forecaster and Stylist Bree Leech and Colour Manager Lauren Treloar, the Dulux Colour Forecast is based on year-round research into the latest global and local trends that are predicted to influence Australian design and how we live.

For the team, this involves attending seminars, such as Future Laboratory London, Colour Hive and attending design fairs such as Milan Design Week, reading trend reports, attending fashion catwalks, product and design launches, engagement with global and international brands, and customised research from Dulux’s extensive networks in the UK, Italy and France.

“The annual Dulux Colour Forecast is one of the most highly anticipated events within the design calendar,” Lauren says, “it’s a big

responsibility, but one that we take very seriously and as consumers and design practitioners alike look ahead to the colour trends set to inspire Australian interiors, we are incredibly excited to be celebrating our 25th anniversary.”

Having worked at DuluxGroup for over 25 years, Andrea has been part of the annual Dulux Colour Forecast since its inception in 1999.

“Similar to how Colour Forecasting for interiors is an evolution,” Andrea explains, “the amount of research and insights that help shape the annual forecast has significantly evolved over time too.”

Recalling those first few years, Andrea says that the Forecast announcement was based on supplier information from Europe and Forecast reporting. There was no social media and limited information was available from websites at that time.

“As we celebrate the milestone anniversary, Dulux invites Australians to look back on the last 25 years of the Colour Forecast and revisit some of the standout cultural moments, both at home and abroad, that influenced interior design trends and furthered the evolution of the forecast.” Andrea says.

Colour and mood are inherently connected, which is why in unsettled or challenging times people are drawn to different hues to help

them feel comforted and secure. During these times people tend to gravitate towards earth-based colours such as browns, soft greens and blues, hues that evoke a sense of strength and calm.

“Throughout the last 25 years Australians have faced a number of significant moments that have influenced and inspired our interior colour trends. These include economic crisis, natural disasters, political instability, advances in globalisation and digital technologies, such as the emergence and subsequent growth in social media, climate change and war or terror-related disasters.”

The 2010 Colour Forecast saw hues of cool and calming blues begin to emerge within Australian homes to recreate that coveted coastal feeling. This trend has since transformed into one of Australia’s most loved interior styles as Hamptons, particularly as advances in digital technology have allowed people the flexibility of working from home.

Following the global financial crisis (GFC) yellow made a huge comeback within Australian interior design after years of being considered ‘unfashionable’, as seen within the 2011 Dulux Colour Forecast.

A few years later we saw a particularly vibrant and joyful Colour Forecast where there was no single or dominating colour. The 2014 Colour Forecast introduced plenty of metallics, such as gold, copper and brass, alongside bold and bright colourful combinations - much

like what we have seen again within the 2022 and 2023 Colour Forecast’s with the Wonder and Revive palettes respectively.

Another key trend that really catapulted in 2015 was the addition of green shades within Australian interior design as a response to the world feeling constantly ‘plugged in’ and a desire to feel closer to nature. This trend isn’t showing any signs of slowing down, particularly as Australians’ concerns about climate change continue to grow and sustainability has a stronger influence on interior design.

More recently, Australians have become increasingly confident about using more colour within their homes, particularly since 2019, creating surprising and unexpected colour combinations that are complemented with organic shapes, frayed edges and repurposed vintage pieces.

“The past few years have increased the connection Australians have with their homes and as a result, our interiors have become more

exciting, featuring uplifting colour schemes and textures that fill us with hope and positivity.”

As for what will be trending next year? The colour team are still in the depths of research and planning, however Andrea explains that

“Forecasts are an evolution in interiors that reflect key global and local trends, cultural moments and how societal sentiment can shift as a result. As a community, we have never been more inter-globally connected and interior trends are transitioning faster than ever before, so it’ll be interesting to see how this impacts Australia’s colour trends in 2024.”

The 2024 Dulux Colour Forecast will be announced on 31 August 2023.

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