Colour theories in interior design and lighting: Pink

pink in interior design and lightingHow and where to use the colour pink in your home interior design. Plus a guide to pink table lamps, pink lampshades and all kinds of pink lighting…

Before we start, let’s get one thing out of the way: there’s much more to pink than Barbie! In terms of interiors, pink – in all its variations – is far more versatile than any stereotypical associations might suggest. 

Pink can be surprisingly sophisticated, both as a dominant colour or simply for light touch accents, and its ability to bring out the best in other colours should never be underestimated.

Rethinking pink

Pink has a tremendous range, from soft pastel and muted shades, via bright, fizzy neon pinks, to borderline terracotta. Soft pastel pinks, perhaps with a hint of lavender, are wonderfully relaxing—ideal for bedrooms or for creating a calm space in almost any room. Bright pinks add energy and vibrancy, while dusky rose and blush tones work well with almost any colour palette.

Writer, designer and broadcaster Michelle Ogundehin celebrated the delights of rosier hues and pale pinks, in particular Parisian Pink, on her Instagram account: …”pale enough to be a neutral but has more energy than beige. It has a life of its own, rather than being entirely passive.”

emilie fournet drawing roomPink as an 'energetic neutral'. Drawing room by Emilie Fournet with muted pink walls. Photo: Kasia Fiszer

Bringing pink into your home

Pink accent walls

An accent or feature wall is a great way to bring pink into a room; it adds focus, without overwhelming. The muted pink in the drawing room by Emilie Fournet above is a perfect example of pink as a livelier alternative to a neutral. 

lillian mirrorMeanwhile, a deep strong pink wall and painted panels provide a great backdrop for the brass and blue stained glass arcs that frame Pooky’s Lillian mirror (above) - showing just how how pink can bring out the best in other colours.


Pink accessories

brooke copp barton bedroom pinks
Pink textles for balance and calm in this bedroom by Brooke Copp-Barton. Photo: Megan Taylor.

Cushions, curtains, throws and blankets in soft pinks are perfect for bringing some balance and harmony into a room with a range of colours. A carefully chosen selection of pink textiles contribute to the peace and calm of this bedroom (above) styled by interior designer Brooke Copp-Barton.

Pink furniture and statement pieces

clare my studio
Sitting room by Clare Weeks of MY-STUDIO (@mystudiolondon)

Choose chairs, ottomans, sofas in soft pinks to add charm and warmth, or strong vibrant pinks for statement pieces that draw the eye. The soft pink chair in this sitting room created by Clare Weeks of MY-STUDIO works so well with its blue and green companions.

And how about this subtle but very effective use of a pink painted side table in a hallway by designer Emilie Fournet (below)?

emilie fournet hall
Hallway by Emilie Fournet with Pooky's Bamboozle wall lights with drum shades in saffron dupion silk. Photo: Kasia Fiszer

Combining pink with other colours

If you have been reluctant to use pink, try playing around with a range of colour combinations, using one or more shades of pink as your starting point. There are more than 240 shades to choose from so there’s a very wide decorative scope for this magical colour.

If your starting point is a neutral palette, using white, grey or beige, for example, add just one or two pink items to the mix. The pink elements will stand out, while helping to maintain the overall colour balance. Our regular Oldfield pink chandelier (see below) adds just the right degree of softness to chromium and clear glass dining furniture.

oldfieldRegular Oldfield chandelier in pink glass

If you add pink to a room that features natural materials, such as wood or marble, or metals like brass or chromium, and the colour adds warmth and texture, creating an ideal balance between softness and sophistication.

Alternatively, combine pink with strong, bold colours such as navy, emerald green or mustard yellow for an eclectic, vibrant look that will bring a welcome and visually stimulating dynamic to a space. Who could argue with this combination of soft rose pink with navy (below)?

Pinks and blues in beautiful harmony (plus Pooky's Sargasso floor lamp in gold)

Pink lighting ideas

Versatile as it is, pink can pose a challenge in terms of the right lighting. While natural daylight will bring out the softness of pink tones, artificial light can affect how the colour appears, so we’re always very careful with the pink hues we choose. Here are some of Pooky’s favourite pink pieces...

Pink lampshades

extreme empire marshmallowExtreme Empire shade in marshmallow linen 

Our Extreme Empire shade in marshmallow linen (above) is a fine example of how charmingly sophisticated pink can be, while for patterned pinks, we love the vibrant playfulness of Matthew Williamson’s pink paisley design, a contemporary take on traditional Persian and Indian motifs:

pink paisley matthew williamson

40cm straight empire shade in pink paisley by Matthew Williamson

Pink stripes can also be rather delicious, evoking sweet treats. This is our straight empire shade in hand painted card with hot pink stripes:

hot pink stripes
Straight empire shade in hand painted card with hot pink stripes

Browse more pink lampshades here.

Pink glass chandeliers and pendants

Pink is a lovely colour for glass - as delicious and luxurious as pink champagne. Take our Oldfield pink glass chandelier....

oldfield largerLarger Oldfield chandelier in pink glass

...We dedicated a serious amount of time to perfecting every aspect of its design—from the precise diameter of its glass tubes, the spacing, the length, the number of rows, the exact pink, the illumination and so on. The result is a wonderfully retro statement piece.

See more pink pendant lights here.

Pink floor lamps

One for the brave perhaps... pink is admittedly a very unusual colour for a floor lamp, but if you're up for a big column of hot pink laquer and power curves in your living room, look no further than the Dorian...

dorianDorian floor lamp in cosmo pink 

For a slightly smaller pop of cosmo pink, the Dorian also comes as a table lamp.


Pink table lamps

wilma table lampWilma table lamp in hot pink

A painted wooden table lamp is a really easy way to bring a pop of vivid colour into a space – and it doesn’t get more vivid than hot pink lacquer - as demonstrated by the Wilma table lamp (above).

At the other end of the scale, with just the merest hint of pink, is our larger Ambrose table lamp in natural terracotta, which will work in an unassuming way in almost any space.

ambrose in terracotta
Larger ambrose table lamp in natural terracotta

Finally, for a perfect pink pairing, we’ve gone for our Aurora table lamp in pretty blush pink resin balls, topped with our 30cm Empire shade in card, hand painted with hot pink scallops...

So, is it time you rethink pink?

aurora in blush pink resinAurora table lamp in pretty blush pink resin balls with 30cm Empire shade in hand painted card with hot pink scallops

See more pink table lamps here.

Pooky make beautiful lights for beautiful interiors - find inspiration on our blog and shop our huge range of lights and shades.


See also:

Colour theories in interior design and lighting: black
Colour theories in interior design and lighting: white
Colour theories in interior design and lighting: red
Colour theories in interior design and lighting: blue
Colour theories in interior design and lighting: green
Colour theories in interior design and lighting: yellow
Colour theories in interior design and lighting: orange