It’s not easy being green

“There isn’t a colour I wouldn’t use except Chartreuse.” Seymour Chwast, American graphic designer, illustrator, and type designer.

Many would agree. Reminiscent of slime, snot, pus or that 80s fluoro top you used to own, there can be very primal objections to the colour chartreuse.

For such a bold, brassy colour it has a name born from humble origins. The Chartreuse liqueur website explains that the French word chartreuse means ‘charter house’ – the monasteries that the monks of the Carthusian order live in, who started producing the liqueur in 1764. Made with 130 secret ingredients, chartreuse was originally sold as an ‘elixir’, or medicine.

When you taste the liqueur one can pick up subtle hints of honey, native herbs and aromatic floral notes. These notes also translate visually creating a complex construction of shades. Chartreuse is known for its emotive qualities such as flexibility, growth and expansion (Jane Meredith Adams, Natural Solutions magazine).

If you still hate chartreuse then maybe it’s not the colour, maybe you are just a plain jane, vanilla loving, neutral-ist. We love chartreuse for its story, its energy and because it’s a colour that moves you.