Colour Directions 2024: Helter-Skelter

Warm without being soothing, and designed to challenge with its unsettling presentation, there is still structure to be found within the Helter-skelter palette.

The colours have potential to provoke, with Blue Cloak and Red Velvet as the ringmasters of two complementary colour groups. Ascending pinks through purples, pale Candyfloss, bright Phlox and deep Black Grape balance the yellow-based Bitter Lemon, Very Lime and Custard in technical harmonies.

First published in MIX Magazine issue 68 and explored in more detail in our 2024 CMF Directions.



Secondary Clash

A double-duo colour harmony of warm purples Phlox and Black Grape and yellow-green Bitter Lemon and Very Lime creates slightly toxic yet intriguing combinations.



In glass and reflective surfaces, this secondary colour combination presents as both sophisticated and bold, ideal for statement retail and hospitality spaces as well as objets d’art.



Fairground Primaries



It’s all about the undertones in this interpretation of a perennial favourite colour harmony. With the central Red Velvet, and a red undertone running through the yellow Custard and Blue Cloak, the overall feel is warm and playful.



Bold blocks in equal proportions show the combination to best effect in both geometric and painterly outcomes in fashion and interiors.



Fruit Salad



Although lighter and fresher, the more tinted notes of Helter-skelter deliver a curiously offbeat aesthetic nonetheless. The yellow-green Very Lime and Bitter Lemon are offset by the warmth of yellow Custard, while cool tinted pink Candyfloss punches well above its weight as a complementary contrast.



Gradient transitions work effortlessly with an analogous group, but there’s also scope for interesting colour blocking.



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Image credits from top: Masquespacio | Mango Teen | Mirror effect selfie corner | Photo Luis Beltran; Draga & Aurel | Bon Bon co ee table, The Candy Box Collection for Nilufar Gallery | Resin | Photo Riccardo Gasperoni; Fashion in Motion, Daniel Lismore at the V&A | Photo Colin Douglas Gray, courtesy of SCAD; Leo Rydell Jost | Shruberry | Hand-knotted rug, Tibetan wool | Photo Luis Venegas; Dean Norton | Mood Side Zinc Chameleon Mirror | Electroplated spun steel, chameleon mirror | Photo Luc Marlowe; Maxjenny for NK Inredning | Lumi Pouf by Lisa Hilland | Photo Cornelia Wahlberg