1. Archive

Olive green used to advantage

(ran HN, HS, HH, HC editions)

Is olive green coming back into vogue? Shades of the 1960s? Well, why not, especially since bell bottoms and stacked shoes, daisy patterned fabrics and neon colored clothes are making a statement.

So how can olive green be used in the home and look fresh and new instead of looking leftover or recycled from a past era?

Let's do a dining room.

Paint the walls olive green, the woodwork ever-so-slightly off-white and the ceiling bright white. The floor should be a light tan color.

A sisal rug would be ideal. Draperies should be sheer and, again, ever-so-slightly off-white.

For the furniture, let's start with the dining table. A dark wood base with a thick, impressive glass top will certainly make a positive design statement.

The table should be surrounded by four upholstered, skirted chairs. The upholstery color should be ever-so-slightly off-white.

Add two chairs made of dark wood like the table base color. Only the seats of these wooden chairs will have upholstery, and that color can be either the ever-so-slightly off-white or a patterned fabric of olive green mixed with the e-s-s off-white.

If there is room for a buffet, it should be the same dark wood as the dining table base. Place a large mirror framed in dark wood over the buffet, or, if the reflection from the other side of the room will be a good one, go ahead and mirror the entire wall.

For a centerpiece on the dining table, try a bouquet of white flowers such as big, round mums. On the walls, the art could go one of two ways; either white frames or the dark wood color as is in the dining table base. The subject matter in the pictures should have some olive green like the walls.

The buffet might be graced with a bowl of shells or other such collection. Another idea would be accessories that contain olive green coloring.

Around the room in one or two corners, trees or tall plants will add to the ambience. The chandelier in this room might be made of dark wood with opaque glass surrounding the light bulbs.

If treated with a classic look in mind, the olive green can look quite rich in a home and will not appear to be a remnant of the past.

Rosemary Sadez Friedmann is a member of the American Society of Interior Designers.