And The Winner Of Pantone Color Of The Year 2016 Is ... Er, Are ...

It may be a pastel pink and a baby blue to me and you but to Pantone — and designers for everything from appliances to cosmetics to furniture — they are #13-1520 Rose Quartz and #15-3919 Serenity. 

It's the first time Pantone has picked two colors of the year since it debuted the designation in 1999, Laurie Pressman, vice president of the Carlstadt, N.J.-based Pantone Color Institute tells the AP’s Leanne Italie. 

“Joined together, Rose Quartz and Serenity demonstrate an inherent balance between a warmer embracing rose tone and the cooler tranquil blue, reflecting connection and wellness as well as a soothing sense of order and peace,” says Leatrice Eiseman, Pantone’s executive director, in making the announcement.



And, as with everything else, it seems, it may have something to do with the Millennial mindset changing the way we see.

“In many parts of the world we are experiencing a gender blur as it relates to fashion, which has in turn impacted color trends throughout all other areas of design,” Eisemen tells us. “This more unilateral approach to color is coinciding with societal movements toward gender equality and fluidity, the consumer's increased comfort with using color as a form of expression, a generation that has less concern about being typecast or judged and an open exchange of digital information that has opened our eyes to different approaches to color usage.”

Yes, but how does this Color of the Year sausage actually get made, you ask?

“Every year, the company polls décor and fashion designers, as well as manufacturers and retailers, on what colors they plan to use, led by Ms. Eiseman, to pick the color of the coming year,” writes Christina Binkley for the Wall Street Journal. “Pantone tips off some marketing partners so that they can create products, such as Sephora cosmetics and Keurig coffee makers, that use the colors.”

It also apparently tipped off a few select members of the media such as Italie and Binkley, as the formal announcement of the winners is scheduled for this morning.

“In travels to home and interior design shows around the world, Pantone came up with examples of the two colors in lighting, kitchen wares and home accents such as throw pillows for the living room and sets of bedding,” writes Italie, and particularly in fashion. 

“Chanel put the two together in its haute couture collection for fall 2015. Prada did the same for spring/summer, as did Fendi. Thom Browne put the color merge front and center for his 2016 resort collection for women, while Richard James and Roberto Cavalli used the two together for men on spring 2016 runways,” Italie continues.

A series of Instagram posts by Pantone today will “showcase the evolution of three street art pieces as they’re completed,” Michael Hafford reports for “In a partnership with Crewest Studio, based in Miami, Los Angeles, and New York City, Pantone picked three artists — @Marka_27,@W3rc and @ManOneArt — to create art that showcases the harmony of Serenity and Rose Quartz.”

Opines Hafford: “Normally, this type of brand x artist pairing can be boring and lame, but Pantone has created an event worth paying attention to. By finding three hip artists, they’ve added a chic edge normally lacking from the world of colored swatches.”

The decision to split the honor this year may be part of a more cosmic trend, suggests Adam Tschorn in the Los Angeles Times

“Because the news comes barely a month after the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund bucked 12 years of tradition to give its top honor to a troika of designers instead of one, and four months after Vanity Fair announced not one but five best-dressed lists, it makes us wonder if the once-popular, authoritarian, top-down, ‘best-of’ kind of lists, and proclamations like this are falling out of fashion,” Tschorn writes.

As for Logo Design Guru’s prediction in September that Pantone’s Color of the Year would be #17-5029 Deep Peacock, they were a few shades away from being half right. One of the colors is, indeed, in the blue family. Let’s just say the prognostication was clever Deep Poppycock that managed to garner a little coverage of its own.

Next story loading loading..