The British and Colour

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  • The British and Colour
  • Premier Icon SaxonRider
    Subscriber

    If I had one, profoundly important, observation to make as a Canadian expat of 16 years, it’s that the British seem to have a singular dislike of anything colourful.

    In a land that is primarily grey in summer, and dripping wet grey/venturing toward black in winter:

    1. Christmas lights tend to be fog white or, if people feel really festive, emergency-services blue

    2. Houses tend to be rust-coloured brick, or grey pebble-dash (if ever proof of the existence of the devil were needed, pebble dash must be it)

    but above all…

    3. Cars seem to be white, black, silver, or red (which, no matter what the salespeople say, still fades to shit after a few years)

    Honestly, what’s with that? Colour can engender significant levels of positive feeling in people, yet a vast majority of people I encounter here prefer the most subdued – even dour – shades. Hell, when I was playing ice hockey here, players even chose to wear all-black practice kit!

    People of Britain: For the love of all that’s good, and for the sake of a smile, lighten up!

    scotroutes
    Member

    The fashion for white Xmas lights is fairly recent. Most places I see still have lots of colours.

    The housing estate I live on is nicknamed “Balamory” by the locals on account of the houses being various colours.

    Silver is the best colour for a car if you don’t like washing it.

    Premier Icon SaxonRider
    Subscriber

    Ford gets what I mean!

    green ford

    blue ford

    orange ford

    yellow ford

    Premier Icon funkmasterp
    Subscriber

    Primarily green around here in summer and reds and golds in winter. I like my bikes to resemble quality streets too. Anodised tat everywhere and frame colour is generally orange, purple or green if possible

    I used to have a silver ford focus company car. Parked it at Heathrow and forgot exactly where. That was fun to come back to.

    But Xmas lights are always multicoloured in our house.

    nicko74
    Member

    If I had one, profoundly important, observation to make as a Canadian expat of 16 years,

    Wooooh, I’ve just about survived what Canadians laughingly call “spring” here. Dear God, a more miserable season has yet to be invented, and I haven’t seen the sun for 3 weeks. I thought London autumn was bad but I’m considering moving to Togo just to remember what sunshine looks and feels like…

    Premier Icon matt_outandabout
    Subscriber

    I agree.

    Look at the colour of housing in Europe – so much colour.

    Premier Icon welshfarmer
    Subscriber

    You think it is bad here. Take a trip to Belgium!

    Premier Icon Cougar
    Subscriber

    I’m with you on this for cars, certainly, I’ve been saying it for years. Last time I chose a company car there were maybe a dozen colour choices of which probably two-thirds were variations on silver (and metallic grey is **** silver and fooling no-one, get in the sea).

    I think there’s a perception – correctly or not I don’t know – that “safe” colours have a higher resale value. So rather than buying a colour you like, you buy one that the fewest people will potentially dislike. It’s the same with the interior design of every house built in the last 20 years – plain magnolia in every room, sir?

    Kuco
    Member

    In a land that is primarily grey in summer

    Very yellow and different shades of green around here and the thorn on flower it’s pretty colourful. And in autumn the shades of reds, browns, oranges, and yellows as the leaves turn. Maybe open your eyes a bit more

    P-Jay
    Member

    SaxonRider, grey in Summer? Come on it’s wall to wall green here dude!

    I do wish we could have more colours for cars though, I looked at the Skoda Superb website the other day – your choices? Black, White, 8 shades of what I’d call grey, they claimed one was blue, it wasn’t. Saying that an old Boss of mine nearly 20 years ago owned a Yellow Audi A3, it was **** gopping! I’m told White is popular now because it’s the cheapest colour.

    For the sake of comparison my only experience of Canada was Vancouver for a few days, one of the Greyest Cities I’ve ever seen, Beautiful from some angles (I liked the harbour) but quite ugly from others. Whistler on the other had was GREEN, but their trees have a more tan colour than the dark brown we have here. I really liked it.

    I think the french do a nice pallet for cars, not the ones they sell here, but they have some nice ones I saw a few clios in a sort of brown that reminded me of a mushroom, I think they’ve long gotten oven trying to make their cars look all aggressive and ‘sporty’ for the sake of it.

    kerley
    Member

    Silver is the best colour for a car if you don’t like washing it.

    Yep, that is why I have had a number of silver cars. I wash my car about twice a year.

    As for grey in summer, absolute rubbish. Looking at the window all I can see is green, purple, yellow and white all mixing together very nicely (my wife is a very good gardener).

    pitduck
    Member

    why is there always got to be something wrong with people who like stuff, you don’t like?
    plus “grey” in summer? where on this green and pleasant land are you?…

    Kuco
    Member

    where on this green and pleasant land are you?

    Prison by the sounds of it.

    Nico
    Member

    As somebody above said, this is all quite recent. Black as a colour for cars went out of fashion in the 50s but came back a decade (maybe two) ago. White was briefly popular in the 80s for chavvy hot hatches, followed by a couple of decades in the doldrums. For much of my life blue was the most popular and most saleable colour for a car, with red second. In terms of clothes in the 80s there was a rash of flourescent pink and yellow in leisure wear – now it’s all black and grey. I think it might be linked to the economy – perceived affluence goes hand in hand with muted “tasteful” colours. When I used to teach English to foreign students a Spanish girl told me that she loved the fact that elderly English women wore all sorts of pastel colours whereas in Spain they all wore black (I’m going back to the 70s here). I’m not really aware of Canadians being any more colourful but then for that matter European cars are all muted colours and building materials tend to reflect the area. Colourful buildings tend to be those where the buildings are concrete or rendered. Painting red brick is stupidity incarnate as it condemns you to a lifetime of painting in addition to compromising the breathability of a marvellous material.

    Premier Icon SaxonRider
    Subscriber

    In a land that is primarily grey in summer

    I may have overstated this. Put it down to rhetorical flamboyance. In any case, I was thinking of the sky.

    Premier Icon kayak23
    Subscriber

    I’ve got purple pants on soooo…. 🤔

    Edukator
    Member

    It depends on the mood of the country. The late 60s were quite colourfuland the start of the 70s were dazzling. Then came Thatcher and black and white punk. The late 80s were pretty bright and then came war and austerity.

    scotroutes
    Member

    This sky?

    [url=https://flic.kr/p/2fVALdZ]2019-05-16_07-58-58[/url] by Colin Cadden, on Flickr

    Edit: note the yellow streetlight. We have red ones and blue ones too.

    vickypea
    Member

    I love colour! One thing I have noticed is the tendency to wear beige after a certain age. When I’m on holiday I can almost guarantee that the people dressed head to toe in beige will be middle-aged Brits!

    ads678
    Member

    Bloody foreigners coming over here slagging off our colour scheme, whats that all aboot….

    Onzadog
    Member

    Just ordered a new company car. Given what I need to carry and how little I want to spend, I’ve picked an astra sports tourer. I’ve ended up with a white one, but really wanted some of the fun colours they only do on the little toy cars. They’re just not available on sensible cars.

    MSP
    Member

    I’ve got purple pants on soooo….

    Get some red jeans and a mullet, and you could be Canadian.

    Premier Icon Drac
    Subscriber

    Yeah Monday’s lunch stop was grey and dull.

    Premier Icon FB-ATB
    Subscriber

    We tried colour- it was called the 70s. Look at the colours around then! BL cars in nappy cack yellow, orange sofas. Avocado green bathroom suites.

    Premier Icon slowoldman
    Subscriber

    I remember when all this were black and white.

    joshvegas
    Member

    Once again with the British thing.

    You’re not likely to see stone and white pebble dash in scotland except in tobermorey which appears to be on some kind of trip.

    Premier Icon timbog160
    Subscriber

    You emigrated FROM Canada TO the UK 😳

    mooman
    Member

    Its the snow blindness or maybe effects of the recent off James.

    Step outside the grey polluted flatlands of Cardiff and you will discover a multitude of green colours. The colours of those cars are ideal for an attention seeking 18 year old .. a bit cringe worthy for anyone older though.

    Premier Icon senor j
    Subscriber

    My garden has masses of purples , whites ,yellows,oranges,blues and cat scat.
    I like a pink shirt.
    The missus did try christmas tree light apartheid ,however Little J & I insisted on the most tacky colourful flashing options! 🙂
    My missus is Hyacinth Bucket and I claim my £5.

    mogrim
    Member

    I live in Spain, the sky’s very blue in summer. And all the cars are white, silver, black or red.
    TBH I reckon we are generally a bit more adventurous than other Europeans when it comes to style and colour. Maybe a little too adventurous at times, but certainly less dull than the label obsessed Italians for example.

    Premier Icon Kryton57
    Subscriber

    I’ve been in Lisbon this week, all the buildings were very colourful.

    Unfortunately I got food poisoning/a virus materialised yesterday, so the journey back – including the plane ride – has also been very colourful…

    joshvegas
    Member

    Senor J makes a very good point.

    What other countries go quite so mad for the gardening?

    Houses tend to be rust-coloured brick

    Sets off your climbing roses, clematis or Wisteria quite nicely

    B.A.Nana
    Member

    SaxonRider Before the industrial revolution every house, village town and city looked like Portmeirion. During the IR all buildings turned black within weeks, so no one bothered, the art has been lost

    I was just thinking how grey the world was on Saturday night so I took this ….

    avdave2
    Member

    If you want grey you need to go to Frankfurt, they have every shade of it imaginable and then some

    scud
    Member
    Premier Icon dangeourbrain
    Subscriber

    I was just thinking how grey the world was on Saturday night so I took this ….

    I’m amazed thats not made the news by now given the number of angry commuters there must have been on Monday

    I’m amazed thats not made the news by now given the number of angry commuters there must have been on Monday

    It’s only Fifers, ken?

    Naebody gie’s a shite aboot the Fifers.

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