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Pink is the new…well, pink

Pantone Radiant Orchid

  In case you haven't noticed the explosion of pink in everything from fashion to appliances and electronics, get ready for an even “rosier” new year! The Pantone Color Institute, which is an organization that studies trends in color throughout the world, has named Radiant Orchid (to the layperson, “pink”) as the color of the year for 2014.

Pink clothing pink-makeup


  Color trends typically reflect what is happening in the world at the time, and the overall mood of society in general. For example, during World War II, colors were drab and militaristic—Olive green, tans, navy blue, and grays were prevalent in fashion, furniture and accessories. In the psychedelic 60’s and the “cultural revolution,” bright, vivid colors such as orange, green, yellows and purples were the norm.   When recession and oil crises hit in the 1970’s, however, colors became more muted and earthy (browns, burnt orange, and gold). The 1980’s saw a return to bright and vibrant color spurred by a resurgent and blustering economy. Finally, during the Internet and dotcom bubbles of the late 90’s and early 2000s, a lot of brands used bright, vivid colors to project an optimistic view of the business climate.  

Color Through the Decades

  People once again are seeing the world through “rose-colored glasses”—literally. The general mood around the country (and world at large) is improving as the economy recovers, customers spend more money, and employers are hiring. So what does this mean for your brand? Should you change your corporate colors to Radiant Orchid (pink) or use it in all of your marketing collateral? Probably not.   It usually takes color a few years to make its way from fashion and electronics to the general consumer realm. And color trends to be cyclical, just like fashion. It is interesting to note that Radiant Orchid was also a prevalent color in the 80’s— which might also explain why “mom jeans,” fluorescent colors, big hair, and metal bands seem to be on the rebound lately!   By: Ryan Hembree, Principal | Brand & Creative Strategy