Are We Ready for the Return of Two-Tone Walls?

The '90s called. They want their paint treatment back.

It first popped up on Pinterest, as these things are wont to do: a wall in two shades of blue, divided by a chair rail. For the record, even that phrase brings visions of '90s dens swirling from the depths of Mario Cart-fueled memory. Hunter-green walls divided about a third of the way up by a piece of white molding. Maybe the top was a lighter green, maybe carpet beige. There was without a doubt a cringe-worthy ivy-patterned wallpaper border at the top. 

But alas, at the sight of these two smooth earthy blues paired up, half paneled, half flat, a strange and wholly unexpected feeling came over me—I liked it. I really liked it. It looked...cool.

I brushed it off as a fluke. I'd been spending too much time messing with color pairings. But then I spotted the treatment again, when an Instagram wormhole led me to the work of interiors photographer Paul Raeside. I knew what I had on my hands then and I couldn't deny it any longer: It was a micro-trend. The possible beginnings of a design moment, dancing on the fringe of known taste, swirling in expectation, like so much old cosmic dust looking to form a new star.

Two-tone walls had gone to summer camp for two decades and come back hot.

The thing about these two rooms is that there's so much good design going on. Both hues in each are spot on. They feel fresh and rich and historic and chalky all at the same time. And they're both paneled, adding a very on-trend element to the mix. So the question is, can the walls hold up on their own? Below, exhibits three through six.

A BHDM-designed guest room in Brooklyn. 
A BHDM-designed guest room in Brooklyn. 
A dining room designed by Jessica Helgerson in Portland, Oregon.  
A dining room designed by Jessica Helgerson in Portland, Oregon.  
Manish Aurora's Paris apartment. 
Manish Aurora's Paris apartment. 
Hedelberg Suites, a hotel designed by Michele Bonan. 
Hedelberg Suites, a hotel designed by Michele Bonan. 

It would seem two-tone walls 2.0 is ready for launch. Are you in?

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