The colour of the year is Pantone Ultra Violet 18-3838. Ultra Violet is a deep purple, evoking a feeling of royalty and creativity. Here’s what Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Colour Institute, has to say about the colour selection: “We are living in a time that requires inventiveness and imagination. It is this kind of creative
inspiration that is indigenous to Pantone 18-3838 Ultra Violet, a blue-based purple that takes our awareness and potential to a higher level. From exploring new technologies and the greater galaxy, to artistic expression and spiritual reflection, intuitive Ultra Violet lights the way to what is yet to come.”
It’s an exciting choice and it seems Pantone are trying to push us to imagine what is yet to come with this colour. It’s not a colour I use often in my work, it is one of those colours that you either hate or love! The colour isn’t one that’s commonly the basis for design projects because of these complexities, except perhaps for branding on commercial projects. But with a ‘’colour of the year’’ designation and more projects trending toward brighter colour palettes, Ultra Violet is likely to pop up in projects everywhere. Ultra violet is a bold choice that can bring confidence and originality to a space when styled correctly. Below are some tips to get the best use of this statement colour.
Use as an accent
Assertive hues like ultra violet can also be used in common areas, room you don’t spend much time in, such as entryways, hallways, and stairways. That way you can introduce visually stimulating colours into the home without feeling overwhelmed by bold colour. But using it as an accent in a bathroom can serve as a dual purpose. Purple hues are thought to be soothing and can make us feel calmer. Ultra violet can be great choice for a bathroom, where it can give the space a vibrant lift. Using it on one wall as an accent with white walls will tone down the intensity of the hue.
Balance with other colour groups
Ultra violet has both warm and cool temperatures that are inherent in it and its therefore very versatile. Not only do purples work well together they also serve as strong complementary colours — perhaps paired with last year’s Greenery. Incorporating ultra violet with rich, deep colours like emerald green and chocolate brown, and lighter shades such as celery green and blush, help create colour combinations that withstand the test of time. By also working with other shades in the same colour family—lilac, blush again, mauve, blue, etc.—the boldness of Ultra Violet will soften and suddenly feel right at home. The richness of neutrals, like cream, black, and grey mixed with rich gold metallics stabilize the lightness of the violet and add sophistication. These options will allow colour balance and subdue what can look like a very intense colour
Add statement furniture
If you’re planning on using Ultra Violet in a bedroom or living area, consider incorporating in it a piece of statement
furniture. In this case, the piece will act as the focal point of the room, since it will undoubtedly capture plenty of attention.
Bearing that in mind, bed frames, ottomans and reading chairs are excellent options to fill this role. Again, in this case, contrast is key. You want your statement furniture to take centre stage, so build the rest of the room around more neutral items. In particular, monochromatic shades really help set off this deep purple hue.
Opt for accessories
For those who are a bit nervous about jumping into a design full of intense shades, keep in mind that you can always incorporate Ultra Violet into your accessories. These are a great starting point because they generally include lower-cost items that can easily be replaced when your tastes change or if you decide you’re not a big fan of the look. With accessories the sky is the limit. Typically, an accessory is considered anything that primarily adds aesthetic value. So, with that in mind, look to add this purple hue into items like wall art, blankets, throw pillows and decorative pieces. To keep the look subtle, add a big vase of purple orchids, to any room setting to stay on trend.
Go forth and experiment!
by Tola Akerele