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It’s making me blue, Pantone 292

I caught this NPR story on Pantone and the color trends this morning: The Business of Color (give it a listen…very interesting!)

It touched on a couple of things that interest and irritate me:
(1)  Is having 1,925 colors a lot?  Maybe I’m crazy, but that doesn’t seem like very many to me.  Of course, I’m a nutter and can look at hundreds of green paint chips and declare them all wrong for my office.  It’s not a question of not being able to pick:  I’m very decisive and I’m looking for something specific that I would be happy to find, but it is not at Sherwin-Williams, Ace, Lowe’s or Home Depot  I still haven’t painted; I’m thinking of going gray, except that seems kind of trendy…which brings me to my next point. 

(2) I wish colors weren’t so trend-driven.  Because of “trends,”  I either I can’t find the color I want (I’m thinking here about clothing and quilting fabrics) or a color I like is everywhere and on everything—making it feel less “mine”—and thus, like what I wear and make is not a form of self-expression, but like some sort of joining/uniform-wearing/exercise in conspicuous consumption.  

Sometimes I just avoid color issues entirely…

So, what do you think?  Do you like color trends?   Does 1,925 Pantone colors seem like a lot or not?

By the way, I’m not actually feeling blue, the title of this post comes from this Magnetic Fields song:

This Post Has 13 Comments

  1. I don't think 1,925 colors seems like a lot. And I totally agree that it's sometimes frustrating to see colors we like appearing everywhere (they no longer feel like "ours"). Even choosing among the grade school 8 Crayola colors though, there are some people who manage to "own" colors as generic as red or green.

    Love that piecing!

  2. 1925 colors SOUNDS like a lot to me, BUT I wouldn't be surprised if I still couldn't find the specific shade I had in mind.

    I loved grey in my young adulthood and used/wore a lot of it. Then it sort of disappeared and I was probably ready for a change. Now, I have welcomed it back with much enthusiasm.

  3. Colors, to me, remind me of eras. If you say "orange, mustard yellow, pea soup green, and brown" I will automatically think of the 70's. If you say "neon [anything]" I think 80's. "Hunter green, navy, maroon" is the 90's (to me), along with peach and rosy pink and periwinkle. I like that colors can take me back in time, so I don't mind the color trends. I'm colorphobic (I like neutrals) so these trends help me break away from that. But, I do agree that there should be an infinite number of colors. Maybe colors are like species, they only have a record of those, but they are discovering new ones daily.

  4. I don't know about the 1925 colours…I just know what I like. I painted my living room 5 years ago with Behr's Honey Pear and I'm still not sick of it. One of my friends recently redid her basement and asked me for the paint chip because she also loved the colour. Go with what you love and, remember…paint is relatively cheap.

  5. I hate colour trends…sorry but I feel rather strongly about it. The market gets flooded with a "trendy" colour until we reach the point that we actually start hating a perfectly good colour. They then they slowly remove that colour from the market place and if you are the odd person that happens to still love that colour you will have trouble finding it. Paint is not a problem…you can always custom mix but fabrics and home decore stuff is harder to deal with. I don't like to be dictated to in this way. examples: Orange and Advocado Green of course. How many years passed before they were allowed back. Hunter green and burgundy are two other prime examples. As you can see this topic gets me hot and bothered. As an artist I need to work with what I love not what someone dictates to me is in or out. I also believe they want us to spend money redecorating because our stuff is no longer trendy. I really am hot and bothered aren't I??? Great Topic!!!

  6. I worked at a place once that had all the Pantone colors on a ring. I was the editor, but also pulled into jr graphic designer duties sometimes. I loved that ring of colors. I really don't think there could ever be too many colors.

    Color trends? I find them interesting, but I don't find them impacting my own life much. 🙂

  7. Someone else posted about Benjamin Moore–yes! Go there. They have some wonderful greys that look almost green. My parents just used one, and I wish I could come up with the name but I can't remember. _____ gray…A color that they've had around a long time. Someone who has worked there a long time might be able to tell you what I'm thinking of. I want to say it starts with an S, but I don't remember.

  8. If you haven't been to Benjamin Moore, you haven't been to a paint store yet. Don't try to choose with those little chip strips. Ask to see the designer books, which have 8" solid pages of all the colors on the chips, plus more that aren't on the chip strips. The colors on my walls all came from the books – I also get tints (half the colorant that is supposed to go in the can), or you could have them add black to get a shade.

  9. Well….there can never be too many colours really because there are so many individuals out there. I painted my living room grey 7 years ago and I love it today as much as then. I put a yummy brown on one wall just cause I loved it and the room suits me to a T. I can put almost any colour I like in the room and it works. But what I think is really important is to not care about what is trendy or not or how someone might connect your colour choice to a trend and then judge your lack of originality. Care about what you LOVE and go there. It's your nest feather it how it suits you and to heck with the rest of the world.

  10. I guess I'm a bit of a dissenter then, because I do like the color coordination that the Color Council manages. It's a fascinating process and there are some good sides to it. (Of course during the 60's and 70's I was miserable because I hated those colors with a bloody passion!) Perfect example: you can buy kid (or adult) clothes at Target and Kohl's and Nordstrom's and mix and match the pieces and they'll all "go." If a color proves popular in apparel it might make it into home dec. The rebel in me wants to resist the trends, but practically? Not so much!

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