"As designers, our goal is to carefully consider each space's unique needs and the mood that should be created within. Considering the modern lifestyle and the stress it can often generate, neutral colors, including the 'new neutral' palette help create a more peaceful environment that can easily adapt to any style."
– Sara Namdarian, Interior Designer at LIV Design Studio

By nature, designers are constantly attuned to the latest trends, seeking bold new ideas to enrich their work. At the heart of every project though is a foundation of timeless elements and tones that form the building blocks of our design.

In times past, it was accepted that neutral tones consisted solely of whites, beiges, and greyscale hues upon which livelier tones could be adorned. More recently, however, so-called 'new neutrals' have worked their way into our everyday palettes – tones such as blush pink, subtle blues, biophilic greens, and earthy browns are all emblematic of this new movement.

In this article, the LIV Design Studio team will spotlight some of our favourite new neutral tones and how they've seamlessly integrated themselves into projects across our diverse portfolio.

[Pictured in header: Rendering of a solarium at Concord Metrotown, designed by LIV Design Studio]

Blush pink elegance

Soft, delicate, and imbued with a sense of romance, blush pink has gracefully transcended its status as a mere accent color to become a staple in modern interior design. This ethereal hue effortlessly bridges the gap between traditional neutrals and more vibrant shades, lending any space a necessary touch of warmth without overwhelming its more subdued elements. Blush pink's true versatility lies in its ability to adapt to various styles, from Scandinavian minimalism to classic sophistication.

Pink hues can be frequently found within LIV Design Studio's portfolio. Whether taking centre stage as the focal hue of the IDS Vancouver 2019 VIP Lounge, or quietly elevating the subdued beige and white surroundings in the lobby at Concord Metrotown, pink brings an undeniable vivacity to interiors in particular. As the new neutral colour of choice for those seeking soft, understated charm,, blush pink elegantly testifies to the evolving landscape of interior design, where softness and subtlety are celebrated in equal measure.

[Pictured here: VIP Lounge at IDS Vancouver 2019; Lobby at Concord Metrotown by Concord Pacific – both designed by LIV Design Studio]

The timeless allure of muted blues

"Soft, muted blues and grays are often used as calming neutral tones, creating a serene and tranquil ambiance in a wide variety of interior settings."
– Sara Namdarian, Interior Designer at LIV Design Studio

Picture a cloudless sky stretching endlessly above, or the serene expanse of a calm sea meeting the horizon – light blue hues capture these moments of tranquility and distills them into an enchanting hue that transcends trends and mediums. Its seamless integration into the realm of new neutrals is a testament to its unmatched versatility and timeless appeal.

Blue, with its confident yet understated charm, has the unique ability to evoke a sense of openness and serenity within a space. From pale icy shades to soft aquamarines, this hue serves as a bridge between the neutrality of whites and the gentle liveliness of more pronounced colors. Whether applied to walls, textiles, or accent pieces, rich blue tones effortlessly infuse an air of calm sophistication into any interior.

Mirroring the vivid blues of the evening sky, the sprawling conference room at Concord Brentwood's Hillside community uses a series of electric blue chairs to bring an atmosphere of quiet sophistication to the otherwise greyscale interiors, matching the dazzling appeal of pieces like the lustrous chandeliers. Branding is another medium where muted blue tones excel. As depicted in the branded materials for Oasis at Concord Brentwood, myriad blues project a quiet luxury feel while conjuring images of seaside vistas and tranquil escapes. For a spirited accenting shade that integrates effortlessly with more minimal furnishings, a soft, periwinkle blue is the perfect finishing touch.

[Pictured here, top to bottom: Brentwood Hillside by Concord Pacific Branding for Oasis at Concord Brentwood; Bar Cart design by LIV Design Studio]

The harmonious enchantment of nature-inspired greens

In an era where nature's touch is sought to balance the demands of urban living, biophilic greens have emerged as the heart and soul of contemporary interior design. Evoking the splendor of lush forests and tranquil meadows, these nature-inspired greens bring an organic harmony that seamlessly intertwines with the classic neutrals.

From muted olive tones to vibrant emerald hues, biophilic greens evoke a connection to the natural world that is both calming and invigorating. Their presence serves as a bridge, effortlessly linking indoor spaces with the beauty of the outdoors. Whether through potted plants, verdant textiles, or a botanical wall as seen in this indoor-outdoor living space at the Concord Burnaby Presentation Centre, these greens breathe life into new neutrals, embodying a harmonious equilibrium between the modern and the natural.

[Pictured here: Indoor-outdoor patio in a display suite at Concord Pacific's Burnaby Presentation Centre, designed by LIV Design Studio]

Earthy warmth from brown tones

As if plucked from the earth's embrace, terracotta and warm brown tones exude a grounding warmth that resonates with both history and modernity. These earthy hues embody the very essence of 'new neutrals,' bringing a rustic elegance that seamlessly intertwines with existing color palettes.

The depth of a rich brown colour evokes an authentic connection to the natural world. From stunning natural wood elements to sumptuous suede upholestery, these hues lend spaces a sense of depth and character that's rare to find elsewhere. In these display suites at both One Pacific and Bridge Suites in Toronto, rich, dark wooden furnishings and fixtures grant an undeniable air of sophistication to the elevated interiors while providing a grounding element amid the spacious quarters and high ceilings.

[Pictured here: Display Suite at One Pacific by Concord Pacific; Display Suites at Bridge Suites by Concord Adex – both designed by LIV Design Studio]


"In the ever-changing world of design, these neutral colors aren't just in the background – they can totally transform the look of a space. Whether you're using them as a base for livelier shades or going all-out with neutrals, it's important to keep in mind that even subtler tones can bring a whole world of creative potential to the table."
– Sara Namdarian, Interior Designer at LIV Design Studio

In embracing the extensive possibilities of the new neutral palette, the design world has achieved a harmonious interplay between tradition and innovation, elegance and warmth, understated allure and statement-making style. As these colors gracefully entwine themselves into the tapestry of modern design, they usher in a new era of sophistication, enriching spaces with a palette that is as timeless as it is captivating. This timelessness is precisely what LIV Design Studio aims to capture through our work, as evidenced by these designs from throughout our portfolio.

[Pictured here: Materials Palette by LIV Design Studio]

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