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Why you can trust a woman who loves Magenta


Pantones colour of the year

Magenta. Is it pink? Is it purple? Is it red, pink-purple-red or mauvish-crimson?

Magenta is Pantone's colour of the year for 2023 and it’s so difficult to pin down that we reached for our trusty copy of Cassia St Chair’s The Secret Lives of Colour to discover a piece on magenta sitting neatly between Orchil and Mauve. What’s Orchil you say? We will come to that in a minute. First let’s talk about Mauve.

Oscar Wilde wrote, “Never trust a woman who wears mauve”. Well Oscar, we think otherwise. Interestingly, mauve was discovered by accident during the scientific search to make synthetic quinine for the treatment of malaria but the scientist, Perkin, also had dreams of becoming an artist and so dipped some silk into his unfolding experiments only to discover he had made a dye - Perkins Purple or mauve as we call it now.

Orchil, on the other hand was a dark red-purple dye made naturally from lichen usually seen on bricks and the bark of trees. Lichen populations are fragile and the making process very complex so something else was needed. Enter Magenta.

Magenta is synthetic and when discovered in the nineteenth century it was named fuchsine in France and rosine in Britain, after the flowers. The first customers for this eye popping colour were military and the dye was used for uniforms. Fuchsia and rose weren’t setting the right tone for battle so a new name was needed and consequently Magenta was named after the Italian town of the same name near Milan.

We know our colours and we are all about colour confidence.

The delicious colours pictured above are fabric by Designers Guild with paint by Little Greene

Above: fabrics by Osborne and Little with paint by Little Greene.

And our favourite luscious velvet by Designers Guild.


Not only can you purchase Little Greene paint and wallpaper online here, but as a local and family-owned bricks and mortar store you can visit the Drew Decor showroom in person in Sheffield to view the full range of wallpapers and made to measure window furnishings and be guided by of one of our expert interior design stylists. So, whether you prefer the convenience of online shopping or the personal touch of a physical store, we have you covered.

Thanks for reading!

The Drew Decor Team.

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