The pictures really don’t do it justice...the accent is a rich maroon but seems more black in photos. Ya it blooms out closer to a 28mm or 30mm diameter brush. My only other badger is my silvertip Thater, so this is my first brush that gels. It really blew my mind that a badger could feel the way this one does.The "Pure" handles are really cool, love the accented white. It's hard to believe that's only 24mm!