Brown is the ultimate earth colour associated with hearth and home, substance and stability.
Historically, brown is revitalized in recessions because of its association with a down to earth durability. More than any other colour, brown must be though of in terms of usage and context. The various tones of brick, brown, tan, clay and terracotta are seen as the most rooted, protective and secure of all shades because they are inevitably connected to the earth. The colour of the earth generally elicits a positive response, however, some consumers relate brown to dirt or dirty – not a pleasant association that has often been problematic in the fashion industry.
More recently brown has earned greater visibility and respect due in large part to the panache of designer coffees – espresso or brown leathers in both fashion and interior design. In the home furnishings industry, brown has always had a higher acceptability because of its traditional connection to the stability of the earth. People feel secure in a brown interior, an imprinted reaction that goes back to our cave dwelling ancestors.
The homely, earthy aspect of the brown has played very well in the food industry for many years. The immediate response to brown breads, brown rice, brown grains and cereals is that is it wholesome, healthy and organic. This impression has spread to included organically grown cotton, wool and hemp products. Interestingly, brown also represents luscious chocolate. Whether wholesomely unprocessed to decadently delicious, brown is well connected to good tastes.