Global color authority Pantone has selected Ultra Violet, Pantone #18-3838, for next year’s key color, considering this “spiritual, cosmic” hue as an “enigmatic purple shade that evokes the inventive spirit and imaginative thinking that challenges the status quo.”
“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,” said Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director of the Pantone Color Institute. “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.”
Complex and contemplative, Ultra Violet suggests the mysteries of the cosmos and the discoveries beyond where we are now. The vast and limitless night sky is symbolic of possibilities and inspires desire to pursue a world beyond our own. Enigmatic purples have long been symbolic of counterculture, unconventionality and artistic brilliance (think how musical icons like Prince, Bowie or Hendrix all used the hue as a personal expression).
There’s also a mystical/spiritual quality attached to Ultra Violet. The color is often associated with mindfulness practices, which offer a higher ground to those seeking refuge from today’s over-stimulated world. Meditation spaces often utilize purple-toned lighting for relaxation and inspiration.
Designing With Ultra Violet
Pantone notes that Ultra Violet (itself a color mix of red and blue) lends itself to unique color combos in fashion and is easier to pair with all colors on the spectrum than one might think.
“With golds or other metallics, Ultra Violet becomes luxurious and dazzling; with greens or greys it evokes natural elegance. Similarly, Ultra Violet takes on distinct appearances with different materials. Lush velvets in the color suggest intrigue for evening, but are also unexpectedly modern in athleisure or sneakers. In accessories, jewelry and eyewear, Ultra Violet suggests the complexities of natural gems, textures, and florals.”