Illuminating and Ultimate Grey are both Pantone’s Colours of the Year for 2021 - for assurance and positivity

Bethan Rose Jenkins
·2-min read
Photo credit: Emma Farrer - Getty Images
Photo credit: Emma Farrer - Getty Images

From Good Housekeeping

Pantone's Colour of the Year for 2021 has been jointly awarded to two hues: Illuminating and Ultimate Grey.

Illuminating (PANTONE 13-0647) is a bright, warm yellow which Pantone says is a colour of “strength and positivity” which “encapsulates deeper feelings of thoughtfulness with the promise of something sunny and friendly.”

The jointly-awarded colour of the year, Ultimate Gray (PANTONE 17-5104), is a soft, “quietly assuring” grey which is “emblematic of solid and dependable elements” and encourages “feelings of composure, steadiness and resilience.”

Pantone said it awarded both tones Colour of the Year for 2021 as together they are able to “highlight how different elements come together to support one another.”

Photo credit: Zanussi
Photo credit: Zanussi

The Pantone colours are pictured in the above Zanussi kitchen and the brand agrees that these hues “encapsulate the promise of stability as well as optimism." It believes they have the ability to “elevate interior design and the domestic mood” of our homes, after months working from home for many individuals.

Each year a colour or (as the case was this year) a pair of colours, is selected by a panel of experts at Pantone. The decision is reportedly based on a wide range of influences, from films and art, to travel and socio-economic conditions.

Given the combination of assurance and optimism of this year’s choices, it seems the global pandemic has once again had an influence on the choice.

The Colour of the Year for 2020 had similarly reassuring undertones. Last year, Pantone chose Classic Blue (PANTONE 19-4052) as it “brings a sense of peace and tranquility” while expressing “constancy and confidence” during an unsettling time.

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