The world’s most popular color, blue has a wide range of hues and chromas, from pale sky blue to deepest inky navy, making it more versatile, and more subject to individual perception than nearly any other color. Cited as their favorite by men and women almost equally, across the globe, and virtually free of cultural bias, most everyone can find a shade of blue they respond to. It has universally positive associations — a bright blue sky indicates good weather, and blue water is perceived to be clean. Blue is associated with purity — the Virgin Mary is depicted in a blue robe, and it is also associated with trust and authority — traditional police uniforms were blue. A dependable favorite, (true blue!) it plays well with others, making it a congenial companion to both neutrals and brights. All-blue rooms, classic blue and white color schemes, serene blue-gray bedrooms, rooms with an accent of rich cobalt or energizing turquoise, blue never fails to charm us. Tour these interiors by 12 top designers to see their way with our collective favorite color.

Mark Cunningham

Deep blue lacquered walls imbue this dining room and media room by Mark Cunningham with drama. Classic moldings are modernized by the unexpected color choice, setting the stage for contemporary art and vintage midcentury furnishings. A Warhol flower painting hangs above the fireplace, the sconces are vintage Jean Royère, the elegant round dining table is vintage, and the dining chairs, designed by Mark Cunningham, are covered in deep blue silk mohair. The wall color continues into the adjoining media room, where a striking word painting by Christopher Wool is joined by punchy red accents: a ‘50s lounge chair by Pierre Guariche, an upholstered mahogany stool by André Sornay, circa 1930s, and a ‘50s red leather floor lamp by Jacques Adnet.      

Geoffrey Bradfield 
and Roric Tobin

Geoffrey Bradfield and Roric Tobin employed a celestial color palette in this Beacon Court penthouse living room, pulling inspiration not only from the Kenneth Noland “target” painting, but also from the spectacular surrounding skyline views. Reflective surfaces provide abundant sparkle, with a wall of mirrors, a pair of rock crystal sconces, vintage rock crystal table lamps and a vintage 1940s Murano glass torchiere. The custom rug, designed by Bradfield & Tobin and executed by Stark, features undulating rivers of sky blue that meander, much like an infinity pool, towards the windows. 

Rees Roberts

What’s the bluest blue? 44 pounds of Yves Klein’s International Klein Blue pigment fill a Table Bleu, which radiates a vibrant cobalt aura in a mostly gray living room by Rees Roberts Partners. The table is both a work of contemporary art and an iconic example of modern design. Artist Yves Klein, who conceived it but never produced one beyond a prototype, will forever be associated with the intense blue color he patented in 1961. 

Katrina Hernandez and Josh Greene

A Southampton cottage bedroom by Hernandez Greene blends patterns, textures and stripes in a unifying range of blues. The key to successfully combining patterns is to vary the scale and density, say designers Katrina Hernandez and Josh Greene, to keep from overwhelming the eye. Their expertise in mixing color, scale and pattern, honed from Katrina’s stints at Gap Inc. and Ralph Lauren, and Josh’s time as textiles and ready-to-wear editor at WWD is deftly employed with this classic color combination. To keep the room from becoming a beach house cliché, they popped in some unusual pieces, including a blue croco-covered lucite bench and a pair of chests with faux bamboo moldings. 

Amy Lau

Amy Lau’s concept for a Water Mill beach house celebrates its setting with shades of blue throughout, and here, in a cozy bedroom corner, a lush cowhide rug of her own design was inspired by Gio Ponti’s blue and white tile floor at Hotel Parco Principi in Sorrento, Italy, and produced by Kyle Bunting in the colors of the sky and sea. Blue ombré curtains are an intense backdrop for a vintage 1960s Jens Risom chair and round ottoman. The Grasshopper floor lamp is a design by Greta Magnusson Grossman, circa 1947. Amy says she loves to use ultra-plush fabrics and rugs in a beach house for their sensual appeal in contact with bare feet and limbs.

Marshall Watson

A deep, nearly-navy wall color was inspired by the the ocean on a stormy day. In a Naples, Florida dining room by Marshall Watson the atmospheric, moody blue provides an emphatic contrast to crisp white millwork. A modern Murano chandelier, etched mirror, and a display of mercury glass and silver accessories on the mantel add sparkle and bounce light throughout the room in daytime, and create glittering reflections at night.

Gideon Mendelson

Simultaneously serene and cheerful, robin’s egg blue was Gideon Mendelson’s choice for a West End Avenue living room. A color that can sometimes skew “baby’s room” is anything but in this incarnation, with rich woods, warm metals and bold forms creating a sophisticated and inviting space for the family’s frequent entertaining. The photograph is by Darren Almond; the two-tone upholstered chairs are designed by Mendelson Group, inspired by a  Maxime Old design; and the Pebble coffee table with rotating, interchangeable tops is by Lebanon-based, RISD-graduate furniture designer Nada Debs.

Elena Frampton

Elena Frampton drenched a dining room in dusky glamour punctuated with witty accents in a Madison Avenue apartment. Intense blue is everywhere, starting from the top – the ceiling is painted deep cobalt, and an elegant de Gournay wallcovering continues the color palette. The dining table was custom designed by Frampton Co, with alternating matte and glossy blue stripes. Whimsy takes the form of Ingo Maurer’s Toothpaste Tubes pendant light, and gold “bandaged” Mummy chairs by Peter Traag for Edra. The sconces are vintage 1970s by Karl Springer

Fawn Galli

Go big and deep blue for a bold impact. Fawn Galli placed a pair of luxuriously oversized custom sofas covered in royal blue velvet facing across a chunky ‘60s lucite coffee table. Unexpected touches such as the ombré curtains with gold chain tiebacks and a glowing neon and mirror artwork by Chilean artist Iván Navarro contrast with traditional plaster details and a classic marble mantel. 

Katie Leede

Creamy white and deep sky blue — a flock of cranes swoops around a uniquely memorable oval dining room by Katie Leede & Company. The gilded oval tray ceiling is bordered with traditional Asian cloud symbols. Classic furnishings include a Regency mahogany dining table with high-back dining chairs upholstered in a sumptuous mix of blue velvet backs, crewel pattern seats and brush fringe, and an ebonized 3-tier rolling server. The midcentury French gilded and wrought iron mirror is in the style of Gilbert Poillerat, and is flanked by a pair of 5-arm gilt sconces.