What inspires your forecasts?
I look at the world of entertainment, such as upcoming films that might have specific colors attached to them. The art world is important as well. And sometimes two (or more) trends converge, such as the movie version of The Da Vinci Code. The logo and attention-getter for that film is the Mona Lisa—it’s appearing in ads and feature stories. The colors and sensibilities of that piece of art converge with many designers’ thoughts about using more painterly touches in their designs. The best example of how influential films can be, especially in children’s markets, is Shrek. When I first read about this film and heard that the main character would be an acidic yellow-green, that caught my eye. Monsters, Inc. was also a vibrant green. Kids will always follow the color trends of their favorite characters. Yellow-green filtered into every other area of kids’ lives—bedspreads, wall coverings, clothing, notebooks, and even the packaging of Skittles and other foods.
Are there other areas, besides entertainment, that influence people’s color predilections?
Social issues and their emblematic color can create trends. Green is the obvious color as symbolic of preservation of nature and sustainability. The economy can also come into play. When people are concerned about spending money on high-ticket items with longevity, they often want to resort to neutral colors. That does not mean that vibrant colors go away, but it does mean that they have to be used more judiciously, perhaps in accessories as opposed to the bigger-ticket items. Fashion, of course, is always important. The 2005 fall shows featured blues and blue-greens heavily, especially in combination with brown. That has now transitioned into home furnishings.
How do your forecasts affect designers and consumers?
We don’t update the Pantone colors based solely on trends, although that does have something to do with it. But if people feel that lavender is going to be a strong color, we’ll make sure we have a selection of lavenders in the color offerings. It’s not about reinventing the color wheel. It’s about getting the color wheel to evolve and change slightly. That’s really what forecasts are about—how to use colors that resonate. Every designer isn’t going to rush out and do what they saw in my forecast—they don’t want to do what everyone else is doing. But it does help inspire them, or help them to look at a palette and say, Wow, I’d never thought about combining that shade of rose with this shade of blue-green, but I like the way that looks together. Forecasts are simply a guideline; they’re not dogmatic.
How many colors are currently available in the Pantone pantheon?
In the textile system, for example, there are 1,925 colors. Every couple of years, we survey the market and when the designers say they need more white, or yellow, or darker greens, we pay attention to what they want and we introduce new colors to the system. That’s why the number of colors keeps going up—because designers are like greedy kids: There’s never enough color out there and they’re always going to want the nuance of a color that doesn’t exist.
-Fred A. Bernstein
A little musica by The Drums, and a little stretching demo too.
Dain and I had a chance to get together the other week to talk about her new company Dainty Handcrafted. We both grew up in the same area and she used to make these headbands everyone liked. She recently got back into the game after college and has been killing it! Coolest girl, coolest bands, and coolest vibe. Check her out at http://www.daintyhandcrafted.com.
I was down at my local pool doing what I call a "whatever" swim, where you don't really swim much at all, but talk your brains out with anyone who's willing to listen to your banter. I had just finished selling some suits on deck and was now talking about new Jolyn products that have yet to hit the internet market, like our suit sewn with polyester fabric made from a yarn produced by recycled water bottles (pretty neat huh!), that are on limited order. My friend and I then started talking about slogans, and we thought it would be cool to have something like, "1,000 colorful swims in one purchase," or, "1,000 swims while looking good," or something like that, hinting at the fact our suits are super durable. This evolved into "1,000 MORE swims while looking good." And from there we came up with "1,000 more swims while looking good, sounding good, and tasting good." You can see where we started getting weird...
I looked up from the pool and saw a man typing away on his cell phone while my friend and I were jabbering about these "business like" ideas. He was wearing a hat with a big De Soto label on it and had a De Soto backpack next to him. Could this be De Soto himself?? Of course not. No way, not at the same pool I'm at. Then his wife got out of the water and she had a De Soto swimsuit on. So I asked my friend if he or she was sponsored by De Soto... Turns out the man was De Soto, like of THE De Soto mega company that makes Triathlon apparel and swimwear. Oh no. Not good. A competitor- and not just a competitor, but the owner of an incredibly well establish company, and former part owner of Tinley, one of the first triathlon apparel companies in existence (check out the photo of Scott Tinley and I from about 10 blog posts ago!). Should I be concerned? What was he typing into his phone? Was he sending out an email, and if so, what was it about?? Am I being narcissistic by thinking he cares? Crud! I don't know what's going to happen now - he was there during EVERYTHING, and would had to have heard everything. All of my friends told me his company's product is way different than mine and not to worry, so I'm going to try my best not to.
Ugh. I tried calling Ashley to tell her all about it, but she didn't pick up.[caption id="attachment_385" align="aligncenter" width="487" caption="This is our "Eco Suit," made with a polyester fabric made from recycled water bottles. Patagonia and The North Face use the same yarn this suit is made from, and from what I understand, will be using a lot more of it over the next few years."][/caption]
So Ashley's really good friends with a lot of the National Water Polo Team (aka the Olympic team) and used to play with many of them growing up before college and while in college, and as teammates at UC Berkeley. I just got this photo from Elsie of some of the team sporting their practice suits made by us. One of the members is still in high school, so we had to creatively hide her because of NCAA rules...