12 December 2014

Colour of the year?




Pantone recently announced that ‘Marsala’ was its ‘Colour of the Year’ – an interesting gambit on many levels, I thought. And certainly it’s caused quite a media stir and has been commented upon up by several Annie Sloan Stockists, too.

The graphic designer’s friend
What’s it all about? Back in my college days studying Art, I never really came into contact with Pantone colours – it was much more a graphic design thingy and designers talked about it all the time as it was a way of specifying and matching colour. It was explained to me by a graphic designer as a means to clarify conversations such as “I would like it in red”, “What shade of red?”, “Somewhere between tomato and pillar box”. Pantone gets its precisely. Hence it’s not just Marsala but Marsala 18-1438.




Marsala
Pantone say it's ‘a naturally robust and earthy wine red’ and I quite like it personally. In fact, Marsala reminds me of a blend of three of my colours: Burgundy and Primer Red, with a dash of Old White Chalk Paint®.


Kicking off the colour conversation
And ‘Colour of the Year’? Pantone have been promoting a centrefold colour since 2000, I believe, and I think it’s a really interesting idea. If it raises the profile of colour in our lives that can only be a good thing. It makes people focus on colour and that’s exciting – we all need it. 

Having said that, I don’t think we should take it too seriously. It’s for colour forecasters  especially in fashion (clothes and handbags), beauty (we’ll see it in lipsticks) and it kicks off a conversation in interiors, furnishings, design, and graphics, which is all good stuff. It’s all about the zeitgeist and the ‘Colour of the Year’ reflects that – perhaps Marsala is about the need to be more ‘grounded’ in what to many seems a time of freefall?

One colour fits all?
I have to say that the idea of trying to make one colour the colour for the whole world in all these areas seems a wee bit ambitious, and anyway your shop or style simply might not be able to include this or any ‘Colour of the Year’. What happens if you live by the sea and you’ve chosen lots of greys? I say, don’t feel obliged to up paintbrushes and start spreading the Marsala.

Yours, Annie

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