Colour File Interview: Emily Murray

If you’re a lover of interiors or the colour pink – or a delicious mixture of the two –  you can’t fail to have heard of Emily Murray. Lifestyle journalist and award-winning founder of The Pink House, Emily is a champion of making interiors styling wonderful yet accessible. Here, she tells The Colour File (we’re massive fans – can you tell?!) what colour means to her, from her first pink cardie memories to why she’d happily adios beige…

Martha: Can you describe your first colour memory?
Emily:
A pink wool cardigan with gold buttons that my Grandma knitted for me to my specifications when I was about five. It was my favourite thing in the whole world (apart from my Blankie).

Martha: Do you have a favourite colour and has this changed over the years?
Emily:
Pink has always been my favourite colour, without doubt. I’ve always had a preference for pinks, blues and purples. And gold, if that counts? Pink and gold together has always been my ultimate colour combo.

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Martha: What is your favourite colourful object/objects and why? 
Emily: Right now, I’m obsessed with the pinky-purple of my new Bridie Hall glass pot, with its gold ‘P’. The Pink House Husband bought it for me for Christmas. Though it wasn’t exactly a surprise…

Emily's pink P pot

Martha: How does colour make you feel? To what extent do you use it in your work or personal life to influence your moods or those of your followers?
Emily:
Truly joyful. Colour is like happiness in its purest form. I named my blog and business The Pink House because, for me, pink is shorthand for colour which is analogous to fun and fabulousness. I wanted to speak to people who had the same passion for colour.

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Martha: Do you have a colour you could happily do without?
Emily: Beige. Seriously – who needs it? It’s not even a proper colour and it’s occupying a space where a proper colour could be.

Martha: How does colour get involved in your day-to-day life? Does it permeate your life from the moment you wake to the moment you go to sleep?
Emily: I do think about colour constantly. I’ll admire the peachy-rose of my phone cover against my new deep navy coat and consider how I could incorporate than into a room’s colour scheme. Or I might gaze lovingly at the silvery snakeskin of my new Smythson diary, watching how the gold ‘2018’ just catches the light. My hot pink Hill & Friends handbag is always bringing me joy, as is the airforce blue of the Ian Mankin velvet on my new Sofas & Stuff armchair. I revel in colour. It fills my day.

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Martha: How do you choose colours for your work and where does your colour inspiration come from?
Emily:
As mentioned above, what I wear and my day-to-day accessories often give me ideas for new colour combinations. In a ceramics shop on design tour of Sweden last year I found myself strangely drawn to two specific pots: one dark teal, the other a peachy-rose. When I went to pay for them I delved in my handbag for my purse and realized my 2017 diary and phone cover were the exact colours of the pots. Otherwise, I can spend hours faffing about with Farrow & Ball’s paint charts – I love their colour edit.

Martha: Do you think there are rules about colour? Or are rules made to be broken?
Emily:
The only rule, if you can call it that, is that you should go for what YOU love. I’ve become braver with colour over the years – the braver I am, the happier!

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Martha: Do you have a colour story or anecdote?
Emily:
I used to play in a women’s football team in North London. One day we turned up to play a match in Regent’s Park, only to discover the girl who had washed the kit that week had forgotten to bring it with her. Luckily, our mates on the club’s men’s team were just finishing a match, so we were able to borrow theirs. The shirts were soggy, stank of sweat and were way too big for us. But I didn’t care, because guess what colour they were? Yup: PINK!

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Martha: If you could give people advice about using colour, what would it be?
Emily:
One aspect of colour I’m really getting into is playing with lots of different shades of the same colour. I used to think, for example, that if you used pink in a room all the shades of pink needed to match, but that’s SO not the case. Layering different shades of the same colour is so easy to do, and gives a really professional effect. I’m going for loads of different greens and blues in my kitchen – from muted grey-greens to acid-bright blues – and I’m loving watching the room come to life.

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Martha: If you had a colour named in your honour, what colour would it be & why?Emily: Pink House Pink: the most joyful colour I can think of – hot pink, shot through with flecks of gold!

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Pictures by Susie Lowe, styled by The Pink House

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