Pantone’s Pandemic Colors for 2021

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CARLSTADT, NJ – December 10, 2020. – Pantone, the global authority on color and provider of professional color standards and digital solutions to the design community, today announced PANTONE 17-5104 Ultimate Gray and PANTONE 13-0647 Illuminating as Pantone® colors for 2021. These are two independent colors whose union creates an inspiring color pairing that combines a sense of depth and thoughtfulness with the optimistic promise of a sunny day.

Today, as people look for ways to fuel themselves with energy, clarity, and hope to overcome ongoing insecurity, energetic and inspiring hues satisfy our desire for vitality. Illuminating is a bright and cheerful yellow, sparkling with vitality, a warming shade filled with solar energy. Ultimate Gray represents the strong and reliable elements that last forever and create a solid foundation. With the color of pebbles on the beach and weathered elements of nature whose appearance emphasizes their ability to withstand the test of time, Ultimate Gray is unhesitatingly reassuring, stimulating feelings of equanimity, stability, and resilience.

“The choice of two independent colors highlights how different elements come together to express a message of strength and hope that is both resilient and uplifting, conveying the importance of the union of both colors and people. The combination of the enduring Ultimate Gray with the vibrant Illuminating Yellow expresses a message of positivity backed by the strength of spirit,” says Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute. “Practical and durable, yet warm and optimistic, this color combination gives us resilience and hope. We need to feel encouraged and uplifted, it’s important to the human spirit.”

“Pantone’s color of the year reflects what’s happening in our global culture, what people are looking for, and what this color hopes to answer,” added Laurie Pressman, vice president of the Pantone Color Institute. “For today’s society, color is an important form of communication and a way to symbolize thoughts and ideas, so most designers and brands use the language of color to interact and connect with the consumer.”

Application

A combination of strength and optimism, Ultimate Gray and Illuminating do not have to be used in equal proportions, either color can take priority in designs for clothing, cosmetics, home decor, product design, or packaging.

Ultimate Gray and Illuminating in clothing and fashion accessories

Accented with Ultimate Gray, Illuminating Yellow conveys a sense of sunshine and strength. Sturdy Ultimate Gray gives a point of reference, while Illuminating adds brightness to scarves, shoes, handbags, shawls, and tops. The combination of Ultimate Gray and Illuminating with its energetic presence works great inactive lifestyle clothing. The high visual contrast of the Illuminating and Ultimate Gray colors makes them attractive for outerwear.

Ultimate Gray and Illuminating in cosmetics

A mix of warm and cool tones, Ultimate Gray and Illuminating look extremely effective in hair or on nails. When combined with Ultimate Gray, Illuminating shines and shimmers in eye makeup.

Ultimate Gray and Illuminating in Home Decor

Ultimate Gray and Illuminating are the perfect combinations to set the mood in any room, adding a dose of sunshine and positivity. Combining Illuminating with Ultimate Gray in tablecloths, sheets, and home accessories, including pillows and countertops, adds vitality and energy. The front door in Bright Yellow Illuminating conveys a warm and welcoming image that can be supported by the solid and dependable Ultimate Gray in the exterior trim. Ultimate Gray, as a solid base for Illuminating, a bright yellow color that stimulates attention and intuition and illuminates the path to intellectual curiosity, originality, and resourcefulness of an open mind, along with it creates the perfect combination for any office, both home, and commercial.

Ultimate Gray and Illuminating in graphic design and packaging

The combination of Illuminating, a highly visible and reflective color, with enduring Ultimate Gray creates a visually prominent look no matter where it appears. In packaging design, the combination of friendly Illuminating and the quiet confidence of Ultimate Gray lends vitality to a solid foundation of reliability, wisdom, and experience.

Limited edition Pantone 2021 color fans

Pantone is also releasing limited edition 2021 Pantone Formula Guides and Fashion, Home + Interiors Color Guides color fans as collector’s editions for designers that can help them better integrate Ultimate Gray and Illuminating into their workflow and create a connection between Color of the Year inspiration and the attainability and consistency of color that Pantone standards provide. These fans will have a special “Color of the Year” cover and will include information about Ultimate Gray and Illuminating colors. These fans are ideal gifts for both experienced designers, who are already aware of the latest color trends, and for beginners, who want to decorate their workspace with useful and beautiful tools. On sale in Russia is expected in the second half of January 2021.

Pantone Connect for Ultimate Gray and Illuminating in Digital Design

Pantone Connect, an extremely useful extension for Adobe Creative Cloud, includes five color palettes with Ultimate Gray and Illuminating. These “Color of the Year” themed palettes, like any other Pantone color, are available for viewing and integration into design files in Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign. Pantone Connect also offers designers an easy way to convert any color to Pantone colors and work on palettes with colleagues. Download Pantone Connect to start creating designs with Ultimate Gray and Illuminating. today.

Find Ultimate Gray and Illuminating in the Pantone color guides

Pantone’s Pandemic Colors for 2021
For fabrics and textiles
Pantone’s Pandemic Colors for 2021
For accessories, cosmetics, and interiors
Pantone’s Pandemic Colors for 2021
For metallics in fashion, accessories and cosmetics
Pantone’s Pandemic Colors for 2021
For polyester and synthetics
Pantone’s Pandemic Colors for 2021
For printing and packaging
Pantone’s Pandemic Colors for 2021
For metallics in printing and packaging

Pantone numbers and color coordinates

Ultimate Gray 17-5104

Color System FASHION, HOME + INTERIORS (TCX)
PANTONE 17-5104 TCX Ultimate Gray
CMYK: 40 30 32 9
sRGB: 147 149 151
HTML:   939597
Color System FASHION, HOME + INTERIORS Metallic Shimmers (TPG)
Closest match PANTONE 17-5104 TPG Ultimate Gray
Color System FASHION, HOME + INTERIORS Metallic Shimmers (TPM)
Closest match PANTONE 20-0005 TPM Chrome
Color System FASHION, HOME + INTERIORS Polyester (TSX)
Closest match PANTONE 16-4002 TSX Concrete
Color System PANTONE MATCHING SYSTEM™
Closest match PANTONE Cool Gray 7 C
CMYK: 38 29 24 5
sRGB: 151 153 155
HTML:   97999B
Color System PANTONE MATCHING SYSTEM™ Metallics
Closest match PANTONE 10388 C

Illuminating 13-0647

Color System FASHION, HOME + INTERIORS (TCX)
PANTONE 13-0647 TCX Illuminating
CMYK: 3 1 78 0
sRGB: 245 223 77
HTML:   F5DF4D
Color System FASHION, HOME + INTERIORS Metallic Shimmers (TPG)
Closest match PANTONE 13-0647 TPG Illuminating
Color System FASHION, HOME + INTERIORS Metallic Shimmers (TPM)
Closest match PANTONE 20-0040 TPM Luxe Lemon
Color System FASHION, HOME + INTERIORS Polyester (TSX)
Closest match PANTONE 12-0660 TSX Lemon Fizz
Color System PANTONE MATCHING SYSTEM™
Closest match PANTONE 106 C
CMYK: 1 0 79 0
sRGB: 249 229 71
HTML:   F9E547
Color System PANTONE MATCHING SYSTEM™ Metallics
Closest match PANTONE 10111 C

Ultimate Gray and Illuminating palettes

The Birdhouse

Birds are a bright and cheerful group of colors that symbolize the bright and eye-catching rich plumage of birds. PANTONE 17-5104 Ultimate Gray brings a natural element to this optimistic palette of bright colors, which includes PANTONE 13-0647 Illuminating, while the contrast of proud white PANTONE 11-4201 Cloud Dancer adds extra effect.
Pantone’s Pandemic Colors for 2021
Pantone’s Pandemic Colors for 2021

Enlightenment

Evoking associations with a hypnotic space that expands our minds into another realm, the colorful story of youth and the future in “Enlightenment” stimulates our desire to rethink. The combination of PANTONE 17-5104 Ultimate Gray and PANTONE 13-0647 Illuminating combines wisdom and experience with our desire to move forward into new ways of thinking and discovering new ideas, while the metallic silver PANTONE 20-0087 Lead Crystal adds a lunar shimmer.
Pantone’s Pandemic Colors for 2021
Pantone’s Pandemic Colors for 2021

Intrigue

A charming medley of colors, Intrigue combines a blend of different influences. Whimsical and energetically individualistic, yet showing universal appeal, existing beyond the seasons Intrigue is enhanced by the addition of the solid and robust PANTONE 17-5104 Ultimate Gray and the bright yellow PANTONE 13-0647 Illuminating, a yellow tone that symbolizes sunshine.
Pantone’s Pandemic Colors for 2021
Pantone’s Pandemic Colors for 2021

Orbital

Orbital reflects our passion for interstellar travel, a palette of shimmering metallic tones found in the mesmerizing galaxies of outer space. Gold PANTONE 20-0040 Luxe Lemon sparkles with vitality, while PANTONE 20-0005 Chrome mimics the shimmering glow of stars.

Pantone’s Pandemic Colors for 2021

Pantone’s Pandemic Colors for 2021

Sun and Shadow

Resistant PANTONE 17-5104 Ultimate Gray and reassuring PANTONE 13-0647 Illuminating lend strength and positivity to this earthy palette of hues. Ageless and genderless, the color story of “Sun and Shadow” conveys a narrative of the simple beauty that surrounds us.
Pantone’s Pandemic Colors for 2021
Pantone’s Pandemic Colors for 2021

About the Pantone Color of the Year

The process of choosing the color of the year requires careful consideration and analysis of trends. To make the right choice every year, Pantone color experts from the Pantone Color Institute scour the world for new color trends. These may include the entertainment industry and movies being made, touring art shows and new artists, fashion, all areas of design, popular travel destinations, as well as new lifestyles and changes in socio-economic conditions. Trends can also be related to new technologies, materials, textures and effects affecting color, social media platforms and even upcoming sporting events attracting worldwide attention. For 21 years, Pantone’s Color of the Year has influenced design and product buying decisions in a variety of industries, including fashion, interiors and industrial design, as well as product, graphic and packaging design. Previous Colors of the Year include:
– PANTONE 19-4052 Classic Blue (2020)
– PANTONE 16-1546 Living Coral (2019)
– PANTONE 18-3838 Ultra Violet (2018)
– PANTONE 15-0343 Greenery (2017)
– PANTONE 15-3919 Serenity and PANTONE 13-1520 Rose Quartz (2016)
– PANTONE 18-1438 Marsala (2015)
– PANTONE 18-3224 Radiant Orchid (2014)
– PANTONE 17-5641 Emerald (2013)
– PANTONE 17-1463 Tangerine Tango (2012)
– PANTONE 18-2120 Honeysuckle (2011)
– PANTONE 15-5519 Turquoise (2010)
– PANTONE 14-0848 Mimosa (2009)
– PANTONE 18-3943 Blue Iris (2008)
– PANTONE 19-1557 Chili Pepper (2007)
– PANTONE 13-1106 Sand Dollar (2006)
– PANTONE 15-5217 Blue Turquoise (2005)
– PANTONE 17-1456 Tigerlily (2004)
– PANTONE 14-4811 Aqua Sky (2003)
– PANTONE 19-1664 True Red (2002)
– PANTONE 17-2031 Fuchsia Rose (2001)
– PANTONE 15-4020 Cerulean (2000)

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