By Marlie Bilbruck-Boerger
Wrong again! We’ve been wrong about the Color of the Year before, but this year, we not only guessed the color wrong, but also the number of colors that would be named.
In November each year, Kelly DuByne and I like to take a shot at guessing which color Pantone will name as their new Color of the Year. This November was no exception. We individually compiled our evidence, examined the short list published by Pantone in October, and each stuck our pins in the color that we believed would be crowned the new 2016 Color of the Year.
To recap: Kelly chose Rose Quartz as her second choice and Scuba Blue as her first. I chose Scuba Blue as my second choice and Lilac Gray as my first.
What we had no way of knowing at the time is Pantone intended to break the precedence of naming a single Color of the Year and, instead, would go way outside of the box and name TWO Colors of the Year.
We are excited to announce that Kelly actually had a hit with her second pick of Rose Quartz, a soft pink, which was named as one of the two. The second color named was Serenity, an airy blue. These two colors being named together was explained by Pantone as their nod to gender equality.
I personally have mixed emotions about these selections, and even more confusion over how they relate to the equivalence of the sexes.
My first kneejerk reaction is influenced by my mother-of-three-hat: exhaustion. The baby pink of the Rose Quartz and the soft baby blue of the Serenity strike me right between the eyes with visions of diapers, prams and car seats. I am taken directly back to the 2:00 a.m. feedings and spit-up stained clothes.
My second thought on these colors is from a point of view where I see them as very polarizing, not at all equalizing. These hues harken back to the 1950s, where we see an onslaught of pink appliances and pastel furniture in an attempt to lure women back to the home and away from the factories where they had been asked to fill in while the men were off at war.
As a designer though, I find Rose Quartz and Serenity to each be delicious in their own right. Although I personally do not like the colors used together as the only colors for an outfit or a room, other designers are embracing the trend and making it work.
Rose Quartz is a lovely, ethereal shade which harkens visions of rose gardens and cherubs. It is a romantic color which reads as very feminine and alluring. It is already being seen EVERYWHERE! You can’t walk into a home goods section of a department store and not see Rose Quartz represented by bowls, spatulas, and cutting boards. It is popping up across every level of the fashion industry as well; from lingerie, to dresses, shoes, accessories, purses and more.
We love Rose Quartz for any room with little to no natural light. The shade can be made darker or paler to match the feel you are looking for in your space.
Rose quartz will work beautifully with any neutral, as well as, pale greens, dark blues, and even the 2015 Color of the Year, Marsala.
Serenity is a beautiful blue with subtle lilac undertones; it conjures images of limpid pools and warm summer skies. This color would be a fabulous shade for a front door, as an accent wall in a family room, or as an accent color to be used with a neutral such as beige, taupe or gray, or paired with purples, greens, and yellows.
Serenity, too, is manifesting throughout the retail world. Bedding and towels seem to be favored products to manufacture in this frothy hue. We are seeing it appear more and more in fabric patterns too, such as are used for pillows, draperies, skirts, blouses, etc.
When Rose Quartz and Serenity are placed side-by-side the pink goes pinker and the blue goes bluer, but when they are appreciated away from the other, both colors are quite lovely and tranquil.
Please try one or both of these colors in your home or wardrobe. We know that they may come off as being hand-mixed for the nursery, but when combined with other shades these colors will add a little whimsy to your world.