West Elm Yellow

Stephen Coles

I’m lukewarm about West Elm. Their hollow, veneered case goods are at IKEA’s level but their prices are not. Still, I do have a few of their pieces and I’m happy with them. And they are one of the few catalog companies producing original and affordable design that stays true to a minimal modern aesthetic. I also think they create some tasteful, if slightly sterile, rooms for their product photography.


The latest West Elm catalog just arrived and it introduces a new color to their spare palette: yellow. Even their logo has changed to reflect it.

Perhaps the brand’s designers got wind of last year’s Pantone Color of the Year. Maybe Pantone truly is on top of current design trends, but I think their Color of the Year scheme is generally a case of the tail wagging the dog. Whatever the case, I like this flavor of yellow Pantone calls Mimosa, and not just because it’s long been central to the FontShop brand (my day job).

West Elm’s yellow is very close to Mimosa and I think they use it well, brightening up their otherwise pale and earthy scheme. More from their new catalog below.


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  1. 01.09.10 — Laurie

    This was the first thing I noticed about the new WE catalog. I also got a CB2 one the same day and noticed that they are focusing on this color as well. I hope there are a lot of people that enjoy that hue. I, Unfortunately, am not thrilled with it. Maybe it will grow on me this year!

  2. 01.12.10 Mr. Jesse Walker

    Astute observation my young Watson. You should see this months CB2 catalog also.

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