Integral ColorViews Blog
Color trends? Here, to stay… and here, to change.
It’s that time again, Color Trends are all over the place! Most recently, Pantone reports “Emerald Green” as the latest thing. Green is what I call an “available” color, since because it’s right in the middle of the light-wave spectrum it’s a color most comfortably viewed in many instances. It’s mutable and earthy; inspiring of new life, growth, and positive direction. As a paint color, “green” can be flexible in interiors and can be used in many settings.
Small World, Indeed
While I don’t have an “emerald green” in the palette, I’ve been delighted to see that many of my own EcoHues Full Spectrum Paint colors seem to have aligned with some trend colors over the past year. These are from Pantone:
What’s my own personal opinion?
While I don’t really have one personal favorite color, I do have a definite point of view. As an architectural color consultant, paint palette designer and rug designer, my viewpoint is threefold.
My own primary, professional focus as a color consultant is a strong belief in supportive color design. Foremost is function, coupled with aesthetics and, in the homes of individual clients, personal color preferences naturally have a role as well.
Where function is concerned, color trends are interesting—and of course they are an indicator of products we’ll be seeing going forward. However using a ‘trendy’ color as a selection simply because it’s “hot” or popular does not serve either my client or myself as the consultant. I always take note of trends but no decision or recommendation I’d ever make is trend-driven.
As a paint palette designer, I’ve created the EcoHues line of Full Spectrum Paints as a 32-color curated palette that serves a variety of purposes. Because each of our colors has no black or gray—even in our muted ‘neutrals’ or most highly saturated colors—they are easy to decorate with. So, many “trend” colors can create interesting harmonies with these richly-colored full spectrum paints as part of a design plan.
In creating the palette style and the actual colors, I’ve been influenced by client requests in both commercial and residential settings. That request is usually in the form of an expressed feeling. The client desires a particular kind of experience. A typical kind of request is, for example, “I want a relaxing space, a happy, energizing space, and also something that will complement my furnishings.” So, with that as the impetus, the EcoHues palette includes pale to deep stony neutrals; underwater blues; luminous, ethereal sun-filled yellows; antique-flavored greens; bright blues, and richly warm reds and browns evoking exotic sources.
How do these fit into upcoming trends?
While I agree with others that we’re influenced by the economy and world events, what I see as important in general is something that’s been happening for a while now: a resurgence in health and well-being beyond today’s blood pressure. Certainly, the deeper aspect of the experiences that we all desire in our color environments is well beyond the transitory nature of “what’s hot” right now or even for the near future.
A quick color trend note
In the world of color and design—in what appeals to us at the deepest level and that will endure well past this year’s colors—is a reference to organic plant and earth sources, natural materials, and textures. As the world becomes culturally smaller and smaller, international flavors will continue in an ongoing appreciation of solid, earthy tones and textures; warm, natural pigment-inspired colors like rusty oranges, paprika and cinnabar reds; brighter, rich hues like Hydrangea and Phoenix Blue, and the deep tones of Mulberry, Nomad and plum.
Cultural blending has, in fact, been well underway for some time and will continue to evolve into new and exciting preferences in color combinations and styles. And, in any space or product, surface sheen and texture are important and often dictate a color’s appearance and therefore contribute to our color preferences and uses.
Third: Home decor follows fashion
As a rug designer, I incorporate color from an instinctive perspective, starting with what feels right to me from the artistic standpoint. That said, I can of course change colors in any way to suit individuals’ requests. It surprises me sometimes that many of the colors I initially use in my rug designs do show up in a future trend forecast. That is always interesting, and just demonstrates once again that color is universal—and cyclical.
My basic belief doesn’t just “belong” to me.
It’s much broader than any individual, and does not depend on color trends at all.
As humans—without regard to “trends”—we all crave color in myriad varieties of light and bright, muted yet clean, and deep, rich, and dark. It’s all about proportion, balance, and use. I see color trends as something interesting and cyclical, worth observing, with variations in each re-occurrence of a particular color.
Are you Into Color Trends for your own home, or your business, or just for fun? Visit these places for more inspiration:
Change is dynamic. That’s the fascination that keeps us coming back for more! What’s Your “take” on the trends?
What are the colors of Thanksgiving?
So much more than paint, decorating, or “trend palettes.”
I wanted to offer some color-reflections for the holiday season, and beyond.
Please share your own inspirations and color-reflections!
How to listen: Take a tip from Joseph Albers
“Good teaching is more a giving of right questions than a giving of right answers.”
Among the many “what’s the first step” items in the process of a new client-relationship, asking the right questions is at the top of my list.
Of course this also goes for any project, even with people we think we know, since each project carries its own set of circumstances. That’s why I love the above statement by Josef Albers.
While creatively problem-solving, opportunities to learn—and to teach—abound in every project
- Help clients discover their own personal design styles
- Introduce new concepts and ideas
- Interact with clients in an authentic way
One example, from a client’s note to me
“…you helped take the confusion out of color selection process and opened up our eyes to color choices we never would have thought of using. We appreciated how easy it was to work with you, and how carefully you listened to our wants and needs.”
It just takes practice!
As artists and designers, it’s so easy to become excited about a project and about our own approach and inspirations. The practice is in listening, and advising while not imposing our personal preferences. It’s really all about the goal for every client.
Have you ever heard someone say “I can’t believe I never noticed that before?”
Have you ever said it yourself?
How many times do we have to see something before we really notice it?
“IT” could be just about anything, actually, and once you start to think about “IT,” the list just grows.
- Special People: recognizing, appreciating, not taking them for granted
- Disorder: Walk into a room you have not been in for a while and see it with new eyes open
- Color: combinations of color and new ways of seeing what’s familiar
- Ideas: open your mind, open your heart!
- And then of course what can follow is “open heart, open mind!”
What are your recent Openers that you want to share here? Just leave your comment to this post.
Often we’re simply ‘stuck’ in the place we are. Emotionally, physically, and environmentally—from the perspective of trying to make even a small change. Color and even simple design changes can help to create a full-spectrum life.
Sometimes an outside view is just what’s needed to reflect and have a new experience.
If you want help seeing—and experiencing—your own environment with a new view, just let me know.
Helping people get ‘un-stuck,’ and evolve through their color and design dilemmas, is my specialty.
Check out colorful Gift Certificates fo provide a full-spectrum experience for yourself, your family, and friends.
Previous Posts »