cobalt blue color

Cobalt Blue Color – What Colors Go With Cobalt Blue?

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When we sit amongst friends and start discussing the various colors used in our homes, the color blue will no doubt be mentioned as it is one of the more popular color choices available. Under the spectacular blue umbrella, a very innocuous cobalt blue color is only innocent in its name but not in its shade. Let us navigate this article to learn more about cobalt blue pigment and answer the question of precisely what is cobalt blue. We hope incorporating this vibrant, beautiful color into a living space will appeal to you and your family. It is a color that makes us think of all things royal.



What Color Is Cobalt Blue?

The cobalt blue pigment is derived from a blue dye made by sintering cobalt oxide with aluminum oxide at an extremely high temperature of 74192 degrees Fahrenheit (1200 degrees Celsius). Because of the manipulation, cobalt blue pigment will be a lighter blue than other blue colors that have not been through the treatment process.

Blue is universally one of the most popular colors and learning to make different shades of blue colors will always help expand your knowledge and mixing abilities. There are so many shades of blue, ranging from very dark to very light blue, with warm and muted tones. The list is almost never-ending, and getting the correct cobalt blue color is almost an art. Many people often mistake the color ultramarine blue for cobalt blue. Still, cobalt blue is a much cooler color than ultramarine blue, so knowing the difference could be significant in interior design.

Cobalt blue is a medium blue and occupies a space between navy blue and sky blue on the color wheel. There are different shades of cobalt blue color, and each color has its own HEX code or identifier. Cobalt blue color is considered to be an elegant color and is often confused with other blue shades, such as cornflower blue or indigo cobalt.

how to make cobalt blue

ShadeCobalt Hex CodeCMYK Color Code (%)RGB Color CodeColor
Cobalt Blue#0047AB100, 58, 0, 330, 71, 171


The Meaning of the Cobalt Blue Color

Cobalt blue is a medium blue shade that creates feelings of serenity and calmness. The deep hue can also give a sense of richness. The cobalt blue color represents connection and intuition as well as strength, stability, and protection.


How to Make Cobalt Blue Color Paint

When mixing any colors, it is essential to know the basics. The cobalt blue pigment is achieved by following a few steps. It is not an easy process, so some experimenting will feature in the factor. If you are looking at making a color like cobalt blue, you would need to mix a bit of ultramarine blue and turquoise blue. These two mixed colors should give you the closest shade to the cobalt blue color you want.

cobalt blue pigment

If you are mixing water-based paint, add a bit of water to the mix after you have mixed the two colors. If you are using another type of paint, add a few drops of thinners to the mixture. Once you have good consistency, the mixing process will be easy.

Add three parts of the ultramarine blue color and one part turquoise blue color. To get to the correct color, try experimenting by using a teaspoon, and once you are happy with the color, your measurements can be increased. Test the paint by dabbing it on a piece of paper and letting it dry. If the color seems a bit dark, add more turquoise to the mix, and if it appears a little light, add a bit more ultramarine.



Cobalt Blue: A Brief History

In its impure state, the cobalt blue color was the primary blue pigment, used for centuries by the Chinese to manufacture white and blue porcelain. The Chinese started using the color in the ninth century. The first recorded use of the cobalt blue color was in 1777, and total commercial production of the pigment began in the early 1800s in France.

A Norwegian-based company called Blaffaveyaeket, Blue Color Works, became the leader in the world manufacturing cobalt blue color. Today, Germany is still one of the major players in the manufacturing of color.


Cobalt, Cars, and Construction

Jeep and Bugatti stand out as car manufacturers who have used cobalt blue in their production lines and construction. Due to the excellent stability of the chemical alkali, cobalt blue pigment is used when mixing concrete.

cobalt blue


Cobalt, Sports, and Video Games

Two soccer clubs in the major leagues have used cobalt blue colors in their uniforms, namely Real Salt Lake and Sporting Kansas City. This color was first used in the early 2000s. With video games, the world-renowned manufacturer Sega has its official brand colors in cobalt blue pigment, and its mascot, Sonic, was also made from cobalt blue to compliment the brand name.



Cobalt Blue Used in Famous Paintings

The Chinese used impure blue cobalt and white colors in their porcelain designs from the early ninth century. Porcelain figurines and pottery from China are still manufactured right up to today.

A watercolorist, John Varley, suggested using cobalt blue paint rather than ultramarine blue colors. He indicated that the cobalt blue color appeared far superior to other blue colors and raved about the brilliant way in which contrasting light and dark and tints could be achieved when painting with this particular color.

Many famous paintings that captured unclouded skies and bodies of water were painted in cobalt blue colors. Artists have used cobalt blue colors since they first became available in oil paint and watercolors in the early 1800s.


Starry Night Over the Rhône (1888) by Vincent van Gogh

Artist Vincent van Gogh (1853 – 1890)
Date Completed1888
MediumOil on canvas
LocationThe Musée d’Orsay, Paris, France

chartreuse in art
The Starry Night (1888) by Vincent van Gogh; Vincent van Gogh, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Vincent van Gogh used cobalt blue, Prussian blue, and ultramarine in his infamous painting, Starry Night Over the Rhône (1888). Van Gogh once wrote to his brother, Theo van Gogh, exclaiming his enthusiasm for the blue shade; “Cobalt — is a divine color, and there’s nothing so fine as that for putting space around things”.


Hill Top Farm, Winter (1949) by Maxfield Parrish

ArtistMaxfield Parrish (1870 – 1966)
Date Completed1949
MediumOil on masonite
LocationBoston Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, United States


One particular painter, Maxfield Parrish, became known for his intense blue skyscape paintings. He used the cobalt blue color so often that the admirers of his work started calling the cobalt blue color “Parrish Blue”. An example of his use of cobalt blue would be in his artwork titled Hill Top Farm, Winter (1949).



The Various Shades of Cobalt Blue

Cobalt blue is considered to be a medium-blue shade. This dazzling blue shade is lighter than navy blue, but much darker when compared to sky blue. Depending on the amounts of minerals and metals present, cobalt blue can vary slightly in hue. Below, we have listed a few popular shades of cobalt.

what is cobalt blue


Persian Blue

This shade of cobalt blue gets its name from the Persion pottery containing the pigment. Persian blue was also used in and around Mosques in Iran and other Middle Eastern areas. Just like many other shades of cobalt, Persian blue’s name comes from the lapis lazuli mineral.

ShadeHex CodeCMYK Color Code (%)RGB Color CodeColor
Persian Blue#0A2ECC


Azure Blue

When you picture the sky on a beautiful day, this is the color of azure blue. The first English mention of “azure” was in 1374 in Geoffrey Chaucer’s poem, Troilus and Criseyde.

ShadeHex CodeCMYK Color Code (%)RGB Color CodeColor
Azure#007FFF100, 50, 0, 00, 127, 255


Lapis Blue

Lapis blue is a medium to dark toned vivid blue shade. It is the color of the lapis lazuli stone, which is used in jewelry. The lapis lazuli stone has been mined for over 6000 years in north-eastern Afghanistan in the Kokcha River valley of the Badakhshan province.

ShadeHex CodeCMYK Color Code (%)RGB Color CodeColor

cobalt blue color livingroom


Ultramarine Blue

The word “ultramarine” means “beyond the sea” in Latin. The Ultramarine blue color was once created by crushing the stone, lapis lazuli. In the 14th and 15th centuries, Italian traders in Europe imported ultramarine from mines in Afghanistan.

ShadeHex CodeCMYK Color Code (%)RGB Color CodeColor
Ultramarine#120A8F87, 93, 0, 4418, 10, 143



What Colors Go With Cobalt Blue?

Not everybody wants to have bright colors as accent pieces in the home, and if that is not the scene you want to create, using different shades of blue together with cobalt blue will create a feeling of calm in a living space such as a bedroom. The versatility of the cobalt blue color can be paired with lush green potted plants, and bed covers can be more muted light shades of blue. The contrast between the different shades is not glaringly obvious but relatively cohesive.

what colors go with cobalt blue

Another thing to consider is that having bright and bold colors in a room will affect emotions, which could negatively impact children. In a bedroom, you should consider using lighter shades of blue instead of darker ones. Cobalt blue is an energizing color, but when paired with soft shades of blue such as sky blue or celadon, it takes on a more calming effect.

ShadeHex CodeCMYK Color Code (%)RGB Color CodeColor
Cobalt Blue#0047AB100, 58, 0, 330, 71, 171
Sky Blue#87CEEB0.43, 0.12, 0, 0.08135, 206, 235
Celadon#ACE1AF24, 0, 22, 12172, 225, 175



Cobalt Blue in Interior Design

Cobalt blue color was voted as the color of the season for 2022. Many people are now incorporating it right into their living spaces. It is a trendy color for those lucky enough to live near the coast. Our motto when looking at the interior of your house and thinking about using cobalt blue color is to go big or go home. It, of course, does not mean taking a paintbrush dipped in cobalt blue paint and going crazy. Always remember that less is more in interior design. By painting one wall cobalt blue and the other walls white, you will automatically create a feature wall that will be inviting to your guests who step inside.

ShadeHex CodeCMYK Color Code (%)RGB Color CodeColor
Cobalt Blue#0047AB100, 58, 0, 330, 71, 171
White#FFFFFF0, 0, 0, 0255, 255, 255


To get the maximum effect of this beautiful rich color, we recommend incorporating cobalt blue and bright cobalt blue colors as accent pieces. Suppose you already have an established color in a living room, such as copper or a shade of umber. It will be relatively easy to add cobalt blue colors to the copper color palette as it pairs up beautifully with all-natural dyes. Why not consider packing the beige cushions away for a while, as they will never go out of fashion and can be returned to their original place as the seasons change?

cobalt blue interior design

ShadeHex CodeCMYK Color Code (%)RGB Color CodeColor
Cobalt Blue#0047AB100, 58, 0, 330, 71, 171
Copper#B873330, 38, 72, 28184, 115, 51
Autumn Umber#AE704F0, 18, 28, 610, 36, 55, 32


Cobalt blue is undoubtedly a game-changer. Bright cobalt blue colors can take us back to those carefree days at the beach where only sunshine, ice cream, and laughter were the order of the day. Adding cobalt blue colors in a predominantly ivory-toned room will not only enhance the room with the pops of blue color but will also help to recapture those days of joy.

ShadeHex CodeCMYK Color Code (%)RGB Color CodeColor
Cobalt Blue#0047AB100, 58, 0, 330, 71, 171
Ivory#FFFFF00, 0, 6, 0255, 255, 240


The question of what colors go with cobalt blue is quickly answered. Cobalt blue colors pair well with warm neutral colors, such as nutty brown, deep coffee brown, and dark charcoal gray. When introducing the cobalt blue colors into a living space, decide if you want to dress up a corner or play it down. Because of its versatility with natural warm colors, this can easily be achieved by perhaps placing a big blue pot in the corner of a room near your curtains. It will liven up a corner that may seem a bit dull.

ShadeHex CodeCMYK Color Code (%)RGB Color CodeColor
Cobalt Blue#0047AB100, 58, 0, 330, 71, 171
Nutty Brown#8A6F440, 20, 51, 46138, 111, 68
Deep Coffee Brown#7042410, 41, 42, 56112, 66, 65
Charcoal Gray#36454F0.32, 0.13, 0, 0.6954, 69, 79


Cobalt Blue in the Bathroom

Most of our bathrooms are stark white or beige, which can easily be changed by incorporating a monochromatic tiled wall in a bright blue cobalt color. Don’t be afraid of changing an entire wall, as the blue color will never date. Even at a later stage, if you want to incorporate other colors, you can be confident that those different colors will match up beautifully with the feature wall. Comparing cobalt blue colors with other shades of blue such as denim blue and light sea green will also enhance the feeling of coastal living. Just thinking about cobalt blue makes us envision the beautiful rich white and blue colors we see in Greece.

ShadeHex CodeCMYK Color Code (%)RGB Color CodeColor
Cobalt Blue#0047AB100, 58, 0, 330, 71, 171
Denim Blue#2F647961, 17, 0, 5347, 100, 121
White#FFFFFF0, 0, 0, 0255, 255, 255
Light Sea Green#20B2AA82, 0, 4, 3032, 178, 170



Interesting Facts About Cobalt Blue

Cobalt blue has an interesting history. So, if you are considering using cobalt blue for your home design palette, you may be interested to know a few interesting facts about this beautiful color. Read on to learn a little more about cobalt blue.

  • Did you know that cobalt blue features in the flags of the Netherlands, Romania, as well as Nevada in America?
  • Cobalt blue is highly toxic, and if ingested or inhaled in any form, medical assistance will be required. Those who work with cobalt blue will always have to take appropriate precautions to avoid cobalt poisoning.
  • The cobalt blue color was a very much sought-after shade. When it is in its natural state, it is a burnished silver color, but when heated and combined with aluminum silicates, it takes on the vibrant blue pigment.
  • Cobalt blue shades are soft and soothing. Like other blue colors, even though a bit brighter, these shades bring calm and stability.

bright cobalt blue

Cobalt blue is described as the color that everybody should have. We certainly believe that statement to be true. It is a rich deep blue color that offers warmth and is so cozy that you want to pick it up and wrap yourself in it. When looking at decorating inside the home, you may be a little hesitant to add bold colors as they do tend to become tired after a while. However, thinking about incorporating the cobalt blue color into any interior will always be a success story. So, don’t be scared to step into the world of color, the cobalt blue pigment will only make your creative juices come alive!



Frequently Asked Questions


How to Make Cobalt Blue?

Follow a few steps to get the desired blue and asking the question of how to make cobalt blue is answered very quickly, as it is not as daunting as you would expect. You will first have to mix a blue and a purple to get to a royal blue color. Make sure that the blue and purple are in the exact quantities. Cobalt blue color is secondary, and another way to get to a rich cobalt blue color is to mix the three primary colors, which are blue, green, and red, in various proportions until you create a shade of cobalt blue that you are hoping for.


What Is Cobalt Blue?

The blue cobalt color is not easy to describe, nor is the exact shade of blue cobalt easy to describe, but we can tell you it is a blue color pigment that has been chemically manipulated. By sintering cobalt oxide and aluminum oxide at a high temperature, a cobalt blue color is achieved. The cobalt blue color was also used as a coloring agent for ceramics in the past, more so in Chinese porcelain.


What Colors Go With Cobalt Blue?

Cobalt blue has been described as the color that everybody needs. The color is so versatile that it matches up beautifully with almost every other color, and in particular, it will match up nicely with dark colors such as black, navy, red, orange, green, and white. Any warm color such as beige, brown, and tan will also pair beautifully with cobalt blue or even other shades of blue, ranging from dark blue to the very lightest of blue colors.

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