Has Blue and White Reached Saturation?

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  1. I think blue and white is classic but I prefer it in small doses. Too many people use the combination as a fall back because they know it is sure to work and you can buy a boat load of blue and white vases etc. cheaply. I am tempted to conclude that heavy reliance on blue and white shows a lack of imagination and personality.

  2. I love blue and white, but I think it is definitely overused. It has definitely become a trend. Lately, I have thought it to be so overused that it looks a bit tacky. I agree with the previous commenter that it shows a lack of imagination. When used in moderation, it will always be a classic.

  3. Love blue and white but as accents. I have blue and white everyday china that I love, but my living room and dining room have lots of other rich colors.

  4. 1 used well it’s always a winner. Anything in excess is a no no. However, if people are nervous about decorating this is a better way to “fail” than some other choices.

  5. I have loved blue and white for over 30 years. Tried several times to get away from it, but it’s like an addiction. Also, I tell myself I am not buying any more blue and white then I see it somewhere and I just can’t stop myself. I have kept it to my kitchen and family room.

    • Always go with what you love!
      To much of a good thing can be wonderful!
      Blue and White will out live us all and
      I for one hope my casket will have a blue white

      • Hi Nanny- what a great idea about lining the casket with blue 🙂
        Everyone in my family knows how much I love blue and white, and have loved, forever! And will love..
        My two little grandsons used to ask:”Omi, why do you have so many blue things”?

  6. I am definitely not tired of blue and white , there are so many ways to combine these colors . . Maybe we just need to find more unusual combinations . . Actually Chinese porcelain has been overused , but I am confident in the genius of decorators to avoid beaten tracks

    • I absolutely agree!! I love blue and white. It’s such a classic. I think you can tell when someone is using it in a trendy way vs. using it in a classic way to accent. Sooo over the greys! They are so boring and have zero personality.

  7. As accents, blue and white is wonderful and will never grow old. Anything to excess is in bad taste. I have a yellow, blue and white kitchen and it makes me feel good every time I walk into it. Blue and white is classic, but I would hate to see it beaten to death with overuse (like neutrals; ugh!) and have it become ubiquitous.

  8. I have always loved and used blue and white. I use as accents. The problem with blue and white is the mass production instead of the beautiful old antique pieces. Big difference between Pier One and antique Chinese pieces.

  9. Love blue and white. I prefer it be used in larger pieces as accents.

    What I am so very tired of is gray everything. Enough already!!!!

  10. Over it- too much of the same again and again, especially with every blogger/ig-er posting blue and white ginger jars. There’s a whole rainbow to be enjoyed!

  11. I have loved blue and white as long as I can remember! It is timeless in my opinion. As decorating trends come and go, blue and white will be forever constant.

  12. Small doses please. I’ve seen so much new/modern stuff that the original idea is lost. Beautiful antique blue and white pieces yes, modern blue and white pieces, no.

  13. Blue and white forever!
    I have collected it for 30 years in various patterns besides Chinese Porcelian.
    I do not have it in the bedrooms.

  14. Still love it after all these years. I will never grow tired of it. It is so classic
    and love it with red, green, coral, lavender as well as blue.

  15. Will always love blue and white! What I do tire of is trends of any kind….just look at Houzz and see how everything looks the same , and uninteresting, I might add. I am so sick of gray and the Pottery Barn look!!!!

  16. 1. Always a classic. It has been overdone so much as to become trendy, but for those that do it well, it’s as tried and true a color combo as sea and water. Doesn’t get more classic than what we see in nature. Although, I am very over cheap blue and white antique imitations.

  17. NOT tired of blue and white, BUT I am tired of the grey-greige and monochromatic color themes and the mid-century modern craze. I didn’t like mid-century modern the first time it came around and still DON’T.

    • Amen to the entire previous comment. So tired of neutrals! And mid-century modern wasn’t good the first time around.

      Blue was hard to find just a few years ago; I’m so happy that it’s easily available now. Most of my home is decorated in blue, red/pink with some yellow too.

      I will never tire of blue. I’ll just add other colors to it.

  18. Have always loved the blue and white and always will. It is classic, like a little black dress. I am so over the gray and white. I don’t follow a lot of sites, but when I saw all the beautiful color on The Glam Pad it was like a breath of fresh air. Please keep posting the blue and white.

  19. 2. Soooooo over it! We live on the harbor, are a sailing family and it’s basically the only color I wear anymore. But decorating? Like others have said it’s become a safe color combo showing a lack of imagination. All the cheap blue and white from TJ Maxx… It’s not “instant gravitas” it’s a fad. All the mags have become too “Johnny One Note”. I think that’s why I’m so loving Mario Buatta and Patricia altschuls house – it’s gorgeous color!!!!!!

    • Everything Elizabeth said. Walking through Home Goods and TJ Maxx , it’s all I see and I’m sick of it. Over saturation has taken so much pleasure out of it I actually packed away my blue and white vases last November because I need a break.

  20. I’ve read through all the comments and so many of us love blue and white but more in moderation, as an accent rather than being overwhelmed by it. I’d love to see some photos of blue and white used sparingly but effectively.

  21. Blue and white is a classic but anything that is overdone is overkill. I’m really tired of the cheap stuff used over and over again. Simplify.

  22. Blue and white forever! I am tired of beige, beige, beige, gray, gray, gray, white, white, white. This world would be helped with color!

  23. I will most likely ALWAYS adore blue and white but simply in porcelain! I think when mixed into decor it can pop. I am a person who does not like color in her home decor. Most things are grey, white and black around my home. Very neutral. The blue and white is my pop of color and done right can be beautiful! Everything in moderation.

  24. Blue and white isn’t a trend …it’s a classic..it’s also more than just displays of ceramics. Unfortunately mass Asian imports of jars and vases do contribute to a bit of visual fatigue. Blue and white fabric in checks and stripes will always look crisp and pleasing..

  25. Over saturated! Yawn. It’s starting to show lack of originality. Still a classic though. After a rest it will look fresh again.

  26. Agree so much with Sarah and Todd and Sandy and the majority of those who have weighed in so eloquently so far.
    that, e.g. it does show a lack of personality and imagination. You’ve got me. Ready for a challenge to get me off auto pilot.

    I do love it. But enough already (as I write from my blue and white bedroom, in a house with an irrational number of plates and vases – from mostly 21st c. Pier One to some beloved 18th c. From China and England – great point btw – are on display), and Carolyne Roehm’s book Blue & White is a favorite.
    Ready to spin that color wheel for this new year. And maybe learn from Alessandra Branca or Mary McDonald, Barbara Barry. All geniuses at use of color in my view. Life’s a banquet. Next course.

  27. The beautiful, old blue/white porcelains, are now and will always be classic, in my opinion. There are also well done reproductions now, that done in moderation, and well appointed in a room, are also timeless. The inexpensive blue/white found in discount chains are what I consider the “trend” meaning,
    they are completely “disposable” and not worthy of passing down to future generations.

  28. No, I will love blue and white forever! A dream of a beach cottage done all in tones of blue and white. It works equally well away from the sea. The range of blues available prevents the combo from being repetitive.

  29. I, too, have collected real antique Chinese ginger jars and vases for over 30 years and it is so hard to see the proliferation of the cheap, bright blue and white versions in every published room. Truly old pieces have a muted, subtle quality that is certainly not found at HomeGoods. I read the other day that Mark Sikes has decided to start collecting botanicals. I have also collected antique botanical engravings for 30 yeas and can’t stand the thought of another classic and beautiful thing becoming trendy because a popular designer now decides it’s so. Designers flit from one idea to another and one look to another, that is their job, and trendy always becomes passé. Authentic is forever, and so is blue and white when done right.

  30. Blue and white as a color combo is classic and is never going to go out of style. What is trendy is how people are choosing to use it in decorating right now. The overuse of blue and white Chinese export porcelain and simplistic blue and white rooms are the real culprits here – not the color combination itself. I look forward to seeing how more forward-thinking interior designers are going to freshen up the blue and white color scheme going forward from here.

  31. I love blue and white, and love it most mixed with other colors. It I think it’s always classic and fresh when combined with beautiful colors and prints.

  32. Of course it’s “over” and a “trend” – I just decorated my new house in predominately blue and white last year. 😉 Timing is everything, and I suppose mine is bad. Blue and white really is a classic look, though, so I don’t feel too badly about being part of the supposed problem.

    The truth is, once a design idea trickles down to everyday people like myself who shop at (gasp!) Pier 1 instead of antique shops, that’s the moment when designers and magazine editors decide it’s overdone. I still think it’s pretty, myself. I guess I’m in the Blue and White Forever camp.

    • Famed designer Dan Carithers (sp?) once said “If you have taste, you can find wonderful things anywhere….” and I agree! Onward with Pier One, Goodwill and even (shocker) Rooms To Go (…selectively!)

    • Blue and white “might” be a fad for some but it is certainly NOT new, it’s classic. I have always love blue and white color combos as well as blue and white plus green or red and porcelains and have been using it in my decor for 40 years. It’s only a fad if you do it because everyone else is doing it instead of because you love it. Gheesh, this younger generation thinks they invented EVERYTHING like using milk paint or natural wood or mid-century or fringe or macrame’ or ruffles for Pete’s sake…things that have cycled around generation after generation like country crocks or brass animal figurines. What’s in today is out tomorrow. A bit arrogant I think and perhaps just another excuse for consumerism. I am not over blue and white dishes or shopping at Pier 1 or decorating with what I love but I AM over a lot of these gals who read their own press clipping and think they know it all.

  33. Well done blue and white with fine pieces and elegant fabrics is timeless. Busy collections of cheap reproductions and harsh colored fabrics is not pleasing to the eye and appeal is lost.

  34. I am in the blue and white forever list. And there are so many options other than the blue and white porcelains. I think it is a color scheme that any accent color will look great. Green, pink, red, orange even the over done gray all look fresh with this color combination!

  35. I began loving blue and white in 1974 when my grandmother allowed me to keep the Blue Onion dishes she received from her grocery store bonus program. …and…have loved it ever since using it in some way in every home. So, no, not for me! I am now downsizing and going cleaner, leaner and more streamlined. I am incorporating touches of pale warm gray into the mix… but I still have my blue and white!

  36. Like some voters on anti trend, I ,too, have collected blue and white items , Chinese and Dutch design for over 50 years. When you live as long as I have, I have seen it ebb in and out of style. TheB &W fab may go but I will stick with it as an anti trend. Now I am on a Chinoserie “”fad” of sorts. Would Mario abandon chintz? No ,but hopefully it will reappear again. It’s all about expressing your style in a timeless fashion

  37. I have never been a blue fan but three years ago we moved to Florida and I have been playing with new colors that have a Florida feel. I started with blue, white and coral but I am fickle and the house keeps evolving. Lately, I am incorporating an emerald/kelly green into the mix and I love that too. Blue and white are like you said, classic and for some of us, it still has a fresh appeal.

    Love the post though. you have my attention. 😀

  38. I still love blue and white – it’s timeless and classic. But to go out and buy a bunch of cheap blue and white knock offs just to cluster them together because one sees it in magazinees qualifies for “trendy“. Collect what you love and edit with a discerning eye!

  39. I don’t think you can ever have too much blue, although I do think an obsession with blue and white sometimes reflects a fear of warm colors.

    Sometimes I feel that women try too hard to imitate designers who are mostly male, and men- when left to their own devices- tend to create homes that are more cool, aloof, and controlled. Whereas I think women would tend to create homes that are more warm, cluttered and cutesy even, but we have to suppress our instincts to show that we have good taste.

    I just discovered some vinyl wallpaper in my kitchen, buried under layers of paint, that showcases orange pumpkins dancing over a yellow checkered background. I feel like that is the sort of thing our homes might be missing right now.

  40. I love it! It has been a favorite for as long as I can remember…. I moved away from it for awhile but realized it doesn’t get more classic so I am back with a vengeance! Truly, the most classic decorating combination in my opinion. xox

  41. It’s seeing a ‘moment’ right now, yes, but I think blue and white is classic and will always be ‘popular’ in more traditional decor. I enjoy it and have a small collection of it myself. I do think “all things in moderation” is a good rule of thumb. I prefer mixing b&w pieces in rooms that are driven by other colors–green, aqua, etc. Feels fresh to me that way.

    Also, +734956 to being over the gray.

  42. #3. Our winter wedding some years ago had a blue-and-white theme (after the Gzhel porcelain, actually) and perhaps because of that I have a special affinity to the color scheme. Our kitchen is blue-and-white and I collect Gzhel porcelain dishes and figurines but (1) the color scheme is limited to the kitchen and dining area and (2) Gzhel makes it less of a cliche (in addition to reminding me of our wedding and celebrating my Russian heritage).

  43. Today’s post on Chinoiserie Chic is a blue and white house in Dallas done by Cathy Kincaid…so beautiful and interesting. Good taste is always in style. If it’s classic, it’s “in style”.

  44. I have blue and white from 20 years ago. I use them as accents in my formal living room mixed with antiques. Although my pieces are not antique, they are the loveliest ones I have found through my shopping excursions. It is more important to have an “eye” for beautiful things.

  45. Timeless & at 65 my love for it burst forth as a young girl in my Grandmother’s Oklahoma’s kitchen where she displayed it & we ate on it. Granny collected antiques & hers had the patina that the fine old pieces have that make them so much more beautiful than the new ones which I see everywhere. I have some of her cherished pieces today here in Louisiana along with a huge collection from Europe & Asia brought back from my travels…….the first thing people ask me is “Do you still have blue & white in your home?” I am famous for changing & upgrading constantly but not my blue & white. A funny thing about your picture you used. My friend in Asia took it and it has gone viral in the past 10 years. Don’t you love it? It looks like the two huge urns that Carolyne Roehm has in Ct when I visited her during one of her “garage sales”. How Fun!!

  46. I’ll never get enough of blue and white!!
    But I do think there’s a lot of poor quality chinese (modern) porcelain out there…
    If you stick to well made porcelain and fabrics it is always fabulous.

  47. So am sick of all the new reproduction china. It does not have the patina of antique collections. I will never tire of quality blue and white toiles and antique china, be it transferware or Chinese.

  48. I still love blue and white but tend to like the British version, love old Transferware plates, jugs, casseroles, etc. Very tired of big blue and white Oriental vases everywhere…will always like a few old Transferware plates hanging on a wonderful yellow wall (or green wall or rose wall) what is cheerier than that!

  49. I so agree with most of the comments. Good quality, variety and placement is key, together with joining with other colors…in my case red background chintz chairs, cream colored walls, oriental rugs and even a large collection of Herend Rothschild Birds. I do not tire of it.

  50. I loved and used blue when it was popular 25-30 years ago and have been over it since. Blue is nice and is not bad to look at.I think once a color is gone out of popularity it is sort of like a bad taste in memory you don’t want to go back to. Remember the harvest gold and copper tone kitchen appliances and that dreadful olive green carpet we loved at the time? I have not caught on to the last ten years of grey because for me it is depressing. I have been hoping for five years for it to disappear. I have always been a fan of the Chinese red color. Then I began to like whites, but the market says it is over. I am so confused and have been in distress about color for at least ten years. The trouble with trends is that there are not other colors on the market if one does not subscribe to the trend. There is not a reason to get excited enough to go out and buy products because your colors are not there. The market is saturated with the trending colors.

  51. At the end of the day, you should use whatever colors bring you joy. What others think doesn’t really matter. The challenge with any classic is to keep it refreshed.

  52. I think any thing overdone can be tiring. Blue and white done well is fresh and alive. There were some designs by Diamond Barata in blue and white that were memorable to me. I am crazy about chintz as well. Nothing beats Mario Buatta in that field.
    I love your blog and enjoy each visit into your writings.

  53. Blue and white done right is still stunning- has the ability to take ones breath away- never tire of fresh textures and combinations. So clean and classic.

  54. Never tire of it. W have it in a red room with Floral Bouquet chintz ,Chinoiserie corner cabinets and a French armoire ;in another room with yellow walls and blue and white Delft tiles on the fireplace surround;in a blue and white kitchen with more tiles and copper stove hood and in a pink and white dining room with aFrench sideboard and a Chinoiserie storage wardrobe;we love the Chinese blue and white but also European transferware,and blue and white Mexican Talavara piecesTo me ,the good and the not so good mix well.

  55. To my design world blue and white means things that I have inherited and will always be stylish for me wherever I decide to put them in my home. Blue and white has been in my decor for a long long time. My first set of china was blue and white. My great grandmother’s china was blue and white. It is a treasure to me and will always be for me. I never consider it a trend and as a designer never do trends for myself or clients.

  56. Although we have so many images at our disposal – blogs, pinterest, magazines, etc., design seems to get very quickly distilled into a “fad”. I won’t even use the word “trend” . I feel a bit sad when I think of blue and white. It will be “out” within a year in HGTV world and in the homes of younger bloggers. I’ve painstakingly collected pieces over the years – sigh. TJMaxx, you win!

  57. Antique blue and white China is very beautiful and a classic . But also very expensive .
    To get a similar look you can buy these newer and much cheaper copies . Not the same at all !
    And used in abundance , done in the last few years , you get this ” decorated ” look .
    A house never should look decorated but original , refined and personal .
    So treasure your antique blue and white China , and use it balanced and as a strong focus point .
    It was done so for many centuries , and it will stay .

  58. I love Blue and White, however the Chinoiserie blue and white is overdone. There is another blog i used to visit that now sells a lot of objects en masse. And it has become irksome. Classic Blue and White is always going to look fresh and beautiful. Cheap knockoffs will always be that.. I think more than trends, the thing to pay attention to is quality. If the item is made with care and quality, it will stand the test of time.. Anything else will tire your soul and will demand replacement quickly.

  59. Blue and white is fabulous . Always has been , always will be.
    I have quite a collection and when I redecorate the house seasonally or on a whim, I move it out to be displayed or put it on top of 2 book cases – still visible – just a lot less focus.
    I will always love it .
    I just purchased a high gloss set of drawers from worlds away – they are beautiful. Blue and white always seems to lead me to using more colour which I love

  60. Love it! Clasdic,timeless,will never go out of style! Dates back to founding of this country & mother England,France,Holland, all have delft,Limoge,Spode Japan ,my fav Blue Willow.. my din.rm walls covered in it.all shapes,styles.. I have a blue& white Chinoisere vase set aside as my cremation urn. That’s how serious I am….mburke

  61. I look forward to incorporating blue and white in new and different ways with each passing year. Sometimes I want more of it and sometimes I want less but for me, it’s a timeless, classic fundamental element of great design.

  62. Blue and white is timeless. And it can be used for all seasons, obviously….. it is peaceful and restful and although I agree with the majority of comments here about living with what you love, sometimes things can be over done particularly if the items look cheap….. don’t collect it just because it’s blue and white. Collect it because it is either a unique piece or something you just can’t live without! We registered for Royal Copenhagen. And did not get one piece because it was so expensive. But I just love it and still do! And now that I can afford it I’m not going to buy it. We did select BOOTHS ‘REAL OLD WILLOW’ by Royal Dalton….It is a joy to see every time I see it! BTW, if I see another gray or beige room I’ll think I will tear my hair out!

  63. I’m obsessed with blue and white. The dark navy against old antique furniture, especially English Oak looks amazing. Blending with provincial white furniture or Ikea white can look quite boring. I think anything done with passion and flair, reflecting your personality is beautiful. I use my blue and whites with chocolate brown, silver accents and Italian ceramic lemon accents in the kitchen. It certainly never dates and you can never have too much of what you love.


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