Orange can be a tricky colour to decorate with, especially when the colour is concentrated in a large piece of furniture, such as a sofa. The style of the sofa and your decor, along with the intensity of the orange colour, will determine the best way to decorate around it, as will your view of the colour. For example, if your sofa is an early 1960s piece, you may decide to decorate your living room in a 1960s retro look.
Determine the style you're trying to achieve. This can help you narrow down the other colours or patterns you want to use. For example, a simplistic, modern or Asian-themed room would typically include neutral colours throughout, with touches of bright colour, such as orange, spread out in the room. The walls, paint, curtains and other main items should be white, cream, grey, black or charcoal to offset the orange sofa, if this is the look you want. Wood furniture can work in white or chocolate brown, or use metal and glass instead.
Choose a bright colour scheme if you want a high-energy or retro-looking room. For example, pair the orange sofa with lime green, yellow, bright red, turquoise or blue pillows, rugs, curtains, furniture or paint. Blue is directly across from orange on the colour wheel, which makes the two colours complementary. Analogous colours are the colours found next to each other on the colour wheel, which would include yellow and red. Add splashes of white or light grey in the room to avoid too much colour.
Use varying shades of orange for a monochromatic room. Lighter shades that work with a variety of colours, such as apricot or salmon, could serve as your main colour, with varying shades of orange scattered throughout the room in the form of accessories or other furniture.
Paint the walls of the room a neutral colour, such as grey, white or cream, if you want to soften the room and make the orange sofa pop against the walls. Conversely, another bright colour, such as a deep, golden yellow or lime green, can give the room an energetic vibe. If you prefer, you can apply a wallpaper with a pattern that includes a small amount of the same hue of orange.
Place neutral-coloured area rugs throughout the room, such as white, black or cream, if the floor is bare or the carpet clashes with the sofa. Alternatively, use a patterned rug that incorporates different colours from your colour scheme.
Purchase other furniture pieces that don't compete with the orange sofa if you want the sofa to serve as your focal point. For example, a pair of cream-coloured chairs can accent the bright colour without directing your attention to them. Wood-, glass- or metal-framed pieces can all work with an orange sofa.
Cover the windows with curtains or drapes that match the sofa's colour if you want another large dose of orange, or in a neutral colour to highlight the orange hue. Alternatively, opt for curtains the same colour as the walls to make your eyes travel easily through the room, with the orange sofa as the main focus.
Hang pictures, mirrors, sconces, floating shelves or artwork that complement the colours used in the room. For example, black-and-white pictures placed in orange frames or artwork that includes small bursts of the same shade of orange can tie the decor together.
Accessorise the room with houseplants, candles, vases, knick-knacks, throw pillows and other little details. For example, you can add a contrasting burst of colour to the sofa by piling on pillows in red, yellow, blue or green.
Orange can be an intense, energetic colour that might be too overwhelming if you saturate the room with it.
Tips and warnings
- Accessorise the room with houseplants, candles, vases, knick-knacks, throw pillows and other little details. For example, you can add a contrasting burst of colour to the sofa by piling on pillows in red, yellow, blue or green.
- Orange can be an intense, energetic colour that might be too overwhelming if you saturate the room with it.