black will make them pop

amateurr

Senior Member
Russian
Betty is talking into her Bluetooth.

Betty: "No, he asked for black tablecloths. Napkins, oh, uh ..."
Looking at her nephew.
Nephew: "Silver. Black will make them pop."

Could you tell me what "pop" means in this context?
 
Last edited:
  • Oeco

    Senior Member
    English - US
    "Pop out" might be the derivation. She's speaking, I think, about the contrast between the silver[ware] and a black table cloth. Or is her nephew suggesting silver napkins? In any case, the idea is the same.
     

    Franzi

    Senior Member
    (San Francisco) English
    "Pop" is used like this in the context of interior decorating and fashion and other similar things. The color black will emphasize the silver; it will make the napkins stand out and look dramatic (in a good way).
     

    Oeco

    Senior Member
    English - US
    When we say that something "pops" visually, we are saying that it creates a stunning and pleasing effect on the people viewing it. So, the visual contrast between the silver napkins and the black tablecloth will make the napkins "pop [out]".
     

    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    When we say that something "pops" visually, we are saying that it creates a stunning and pleasing effect on the people viewing it. So, the visual contrast between the silver napkins and the black tablecloth will make the napkins "pop [out]".

    I agree with the comment I've highlighted in red, but not necessarily in the part that is highlighted in blue.
     

    HalloweenHJB

    Senior Member
    American English, Midwest USA
    I would agree with Oeco's post, that using the word "pop" seems always to imply something pleasing. Photographers and interior designers want colors to "pop." It is a good thing that something "pops" instead of blending into the background. Right?
     

    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    Well, that red flannel shirt truly pops with your tuxedo. You really stand out. But do you really want to stand out in that way? I wouldn't think so.

    I think "pops" means "stands out" but I don't think it necessarily means that it does so to a pleasing effect.
     

    Franzi

    Senior Member
    (San Francisco) English
    Well, that red flannel shirt truly pops with your tuxedo. You really stand out. But do you really want to stand out in that way? I wouldn't think so.

    I think "pops" means "stands out" but I don't think it necessarily means that it does so to a pleasing effect.
    Have you heard it used negatively? Practically the only context where I hear it has to do with making eyes "pop". (Granted, that sounds disgusting, but it's always positive.)
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    Well, that red flannel shirt truly pops with your tuxedo. You really stand out. But do you really want to stand out in that way? I wouldn't think so.

    I think "pops" means "stands out" but I don't think it necessarily means that it does so to a pleasing effect.

    I have never heard it used this way. The only way I have heard "pop" used in this type of context is in a way that means everything complements everything else and the entire effect is pleasing. It doesn't mean that one item stands out in contrast to the rest, as your example indicates.

    I would be interested in seeing an example of it used in ths way.

    Here are some examples of it being used in the way I am familiar with:

    http://www.bellasugar.com/2088007
    My eyes are green, and I find that shades of plum and violet really make them pop and bring out the color the best.

    http://www.acorn-online.com/joomla15/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=24127:make-your-house-pop-with-staging-decluttering&catid=228:greenwich-re-features&Itemid=1112
    Use one key item in a room to make a “huge impact” such as a dramatic urn with fresh cut flowers or an antique chair that gives the room character and pop.

    http://www.fashiontoast.com/2008/07/neo-docs.html
    I love the pop of colour that the shoes give to your outfit.
     

    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    Have you heard it used negatively? Practically the only context where I hear it has to do with making eyes "pop". (Granted, that sounds disgusting, but it's always positive.)
    OK. I will go with the masses on this. I almost always hear this in reference to something the speaker thinks is positive (but not necessarily the listener).

    Except that I might be inclined to use it sarcastically on occasion...
     
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