By Andrea Bosco Stehle
In this industry, we anxiously await Pantone’s Color of the Year announcement. Previously, we’ve seen Marsala, Radiant Orchid, Emerald, and the list goes on, but for 2016, the company took a softer route and chose two harmonious shades: Serenity, a weightless and airy blue, and Rose Quartz, a blush hue “that conveys compassion and a sense of composure.” “With the whole greater than its individual parts, joined together Serenity and Rose Quartz 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 Pantone Color Institute Executive Director Leatrice Eiseman. The prevalent combination also challenges traditional perceptions around color association. “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,” says Eiseman. “This more unilateral approach to color is coinciding with societal movements toward gender equality and fluidity; the consumers’ increased comfort with using color as a form of expression, which includes 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.” As far as incorporating the colors into your home, Pantone says the colors are ideal choices for rugs, upholstery, paint, and decorative accessories, such as kitchen items, tableware, candles, decorative bowls, vases, and florals — all accents to contribute to a welcoming and peaceful space. “Translucent, glazing, and metallic shine are key finishes.” Companies like West Elm, Crate & Barrel, Sephora, and KitchenAid have teamed up with Pantone to release limited-edition items in the Colors of the Year.