How Does Pantone® Pick The Color of The Year?

written by Jalisa Oshunsanya

What is Pantone?

Before we explore this, let’s dive into who Pantone® is. In 1962, the color company was founded but started out as a color card manufacturer for cosmetic brands. After being bought by Lawrence Herbert he quickly changed the nature of Pantone into the “global authority of color”. Herbert’s leadership catapulted the company into what it is today. Basically, what Pantone says, goes. Many rely on their color expertise, especially when it comes to choosing the color of the year.

What Influences Color of the Year? 

The true question here is, does the color of the year pick itself? For the most part, it does, however, a committee from the Pantone Color Institute spots it. The decision is made based on macro influences from throughout the world. Pantone’s color of the year is essentially color snapshots of what’s taking place globally and what’s reoccurring in everyday life.

Where They Look

It’s safe to say that the color of the year isn’t planned. The committee takes notice of their surrounding environments and ventures into multiple industries identifying color trends. They strategically attend events ranging from New York fashion Week to London Fashion Week viewing run way shows, art exhibits, pop-up shops and everyday streetwear to see what color dominates.

Influence of Film and Cars

Film and cars also tie into the decision. While watching film, shades within the film and even film effects are taken into account. Surprisingly, car paint plays a huge part as well. The technology used to create car coatings is extremely advanced and can ultimately introduce a new hue. The art world and cosmetic arena as well as everyday life aids to finalizing the color of the year.

What Were Your Predictions?

Every year in December Pantone passes the much awaited title to a new hue. It should be noted that there’s purpose in all hues chosen. This isn’t just an annual routine done, it’s actually very meaningful. Each color of the year encompasses something about fashion, decorating and design trends while also reflecting "what's needed in our world today," the Pantone Color Institute's vice president, Laurie Pressman mentioned.

Taking inspiration from pop culture, the late great Prince and Jimi Hendrix, and the tense political climate, combining red and blue, the 2018 the Pantone Color of the Year was Ultra Violet. The Ultra Violet hue signifies originality, futuristic and visionary thinking. Its bold hue made it known that the future was here:

Pantone Color of the Year 2019: Living Coral

Last week, Pantone announced that Living Coral would be the 2019 Color of the Year. The lighthearted color symbolizes optimism and joyous pursuits, the perfect way to enter a new year. What are your thoughts for the color of the year? Will this be a hit or miss? Let us know your thoughts on Facebook and Instagram.