Friday Five with Ellen O’Neill of Benjamin Moore & Co.

07.07.17 | By
Friday Five with Ellen O’Neill of Benjamin Moore & Co.

Ellen O’Neill surrounds herself with color everyday as the Creative Director of Benjamin Moore & Co., which is one of the most well-known paint brands in America, if not the most known. Her position has her leading the Creative and Color teams at the company which are the ones to spark color inspiration for consumers and designers with the help of the vast array of colors the brand offers (nearly 3,500 at present!). With stints at Polo Ralph Lauren Home Design, where she served as Global Vice President, and the St. Regis Hotel and Resorts, as the Vice President of Design, O’Neill honed her keen eye to become a leader in the interior design world, which naturally involved color and paint as well. Over the years, her expertise has been called up to appear in magazines, newspapers, and design books, and she’s also a regular Contributing Editor at House Beautiful magazine. We hear she’s also the one who gets to pick Benjamin Moore’s Color of the Year every year, which is no surprise with her extensive background! For her Friday Five, we’re happy to see that her picks pertain to color as it’s a really cool perspective we haven’t really seen. Take a look.

1. The tawny tobacco brown of my 25-year-old waxed canvas shopping bag. Patina and color softens with age and shows lots of character…it has been my escort on many adventures.

2. Chantilly Lace OC-65. So many options, so much debate, this ‘white’ is my no-fail choice. Stays crisp and clean under any light condition…stays pure and true and doesn’t absorb any other color influences in the room.

3. Indigo. The inky violet blue executes in an unpredictable spectrum ranging from a soft faded denim to an electrifying, intense hue. Color variation in indigo-dyed textiles remind one of the deft hand of the artist. The dyes never produce the same results twice…the luxury of the ‘unique’.

4. Raccoon Fur 2126-20. A dramatic, but soft color – black with grey undertones. I picked it to paint my tiny pantry kitchen…it is the perfect backdrop for my vintage white ironstone collection…those bowls and platters really pop!

5. Shadow 2117-30, the 2017 Benjamin Moore Color of the Year. After months of painting and promoting the 2017 Color of the Year, I’m converted. This rich, royal amethyst provides mood, depth and drama to modern as well as traditional interiors.

Caroline Williamson is Editorial Director of Design Milk. She has a BFA in photography from SCAD and can usually be found searching for vintage wares, doing New York Times crossword puzzles in pen, or reworking playlists on Spotify.