Radiant Orchid is the Pantone Color of the Year, Leatrice (Lee) Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute, told an audience today at the 2014 International Home + Housewares Show.
“It’s a beautiful color,” Eiseman said. “The inspiration for it is a harmony of fuchsia and pink undertones, like a gorgeous sunset. It’s a hue that sparks the imagination. It is a magical, captivating and enigmatic color.”
In her presentation, “New Harmonies: Changing Themes in Color/Design Trends,” Eiseman, who also is director of the Eiseman Center for Color Information and Training and author of several books on color, said that the color can increasingly be found in architecture and lighting, both outdoors and indoors, and even in hair color and makeup, especially in high fashion.
“We saw this color making inroads several years ago, even in menswear,” Eiseman said. The Disney movie “Frozen” is full of Radiant Orchid, she noted, in part because the color personifies a certain kind of magic.
Owned and operated by the International Housewares Association (www.housewares.org), the Show is being held March 15-18 at McCormick Place here, and features 2,100 exhibitors and 60,000 total attendees from more than 125 countries.
In addition to movies, there are other factors that influence the process of naming the color of the year and overall color trends, Eiseman said, including the economy. “This is a great time for creativity with color, yet there are many people who still want things from the past, based on these uncertain times. So we increasingly see color combinations of the past and of today. We bring in our history and polish the nostalgic looks.”
Another design trend is butterflies. “We cannot get enough butterflies,” Eiseman said. “That motif is huge going into 2015. We are seeing it in every possible application. Butterflies are all about change and that is the age that we are living in.”
While it may seem odd, Eiseman noted that photos of women’s eyes are a large design trend. “Particularly in giftware, we are seeing usage of women’s eyes,” she said. “It’s a look that has swept over the world and it will continue in 2015.The men’s version is in moustaches. In housewares, glassware and stemware we see numerous applications of it, as well as packaging and labeling. It has gone crazy and it will continue.”
With regards to the major color families, and the most important trends with them, Eiseman said that use of the color green will continue, although hues of the color will expand, such as Hunter Green. In the yellow family she sees greenish-yellow undertone increasing in usage. In the blue family, the hues will become more energized, such as classic indigo.
The orange color family is puzzling, but it captures attention and people have slowly embraced it. “It will undergo some variations. If you want to do a variation on orange, combine it with peaches, which are coming on very strong,” Eiseman said.
Red will always have a strong presence in the housewares industry, Eiseman said, but she predicts “newer and fresher voices of red, combined with orange, pink and purple.”
Black and white will never go away, she said, and neutrals will have a strong presence in 2015, particularly with kids’ apparel. “I’m not suggesting that color is going away with kids, as color engages them, but worldwide we see neutrals taking on a strong role.”
Eiseman also unveiled the nine color palettes forecast for 2015. They include:
Style Settings: As high fashion is often a forerunner to styling for home furnishings in line, design, texture and color, this palette is all about pose, finesse and polish. The elegance of the purple family adds a dramatic interplay against the classic mahoganies, off whites, grays and taupes, along with Frosted Almond and Champagne Beige.
Abstractions: This palette releases the inner artist in each of us, Eiseman said. Just as in the formulation of abstract art, styling might seem randomly gathered, forming a mosaic of differing shapes, many of them geometric. Colors like grape and apricot, dahlia red, stonewashed blue, hazel nut brown and vineyard green come from equally disparate places, but when brought together create an artistic whole.
Botanical: This palette is lifted directly from the complexities of flora and foliage, forming intriguing groupings filled with succulent shadings of green and grape and café au lait, counterbalanced with dusty or smoky tones of blue and orchid.
Zensations: This palette engages and heightens the senses as it displays a literal “enlightenment” by taking the thoughtful, meditative qualities of the blue and blue-green family to another more visceral level by adding to the palette a compelling red, an atmospheric green and a sparkling silver and gold.
Urban Jungle: Eiseman said that this palette transforms rustic chaos into something “civilized” and sylvan, speaking more of big city living than that of a wild terrain. Rather than consistently rough textured, contours are smoother and colors a combination of both typical and atypical jungle hues. Warm animal skin tones are set against the modernity of deep blue-greens, a vibrant greenish yellow, plus black and white.
Tinted Medley: This palette is a harmonious composition of closely related warm tones with peach and pink striking the main chord. Bellini, Apricot Wash, Peach Amber and Macadamia are compatible blends while powdered roses and yellows underscore and support the perfect pitch of a rosy-taupe.
Past Traces: This palette honors history in the home as many of us are looking for some vestige of the past that is satisfying and reassuring. The look might range from gently worn to contemporized adaptations, with many color names like Pastel Parchment, Cameo Green, Faded Denim and Dusty Cedar.
Serendipity: The literal meaning of Serendipity is a “pleasant surprise” or “happy accident.” In the parlance of styling, it is the coming together of unlikely designs and unexpected colors. An outgoing orange engages cool eggshell blue, bright chartreuse is enhanced by a yellow gold and hot pink embraces a lofty scarlet, all under the watchful gaze or a Tiger’s Eye taupe.
Spontaneity: Irrepressible fun is what this palette called Spontaneity delivers. Just as the name implies, it is the stuff that spur of the moment, impulse buying is all about, with whimsical design and a unique “mash-up” of color mixtures a large part of the attraction. Happy hues of Sunkist Coral, Marigold and Cantaloupe are complemented by Kelly Green and/or “quieted down” with floral accents of Hyacinth, Violet Quartz, Winsome Orchid or Misty Jade.
The audio recording of Eiseman’s presentation is available at http://www.housewares.org/kc/