Every year the people at Pantone bring out a colour of the year that heavily influences fashion, design and interiors. Last year's colour of the year was bold, rich, exotic and energising however, this year's colours of Rose Quartz or Antique Rose and Serenity or Gers Blue are much softer, gentle and relaxing.  Last year it was all about grey but for 2016 the new grey is white!! Easy or is it? White may be everywhere, but it's also a tricky color to get right – picking the perfect white for your home is no joke. There are a million options, from cool blue-toned whites to buttery creams.

Personally I love this years colours. They are much more calming and driven by the desire to disconnect from technology and unwind. "Colors this season transport us to a happier, sunnier place where we feel free to express a wittier version of our real selves," said Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute. "...we are continuing to yearn for those softer shades that offer a sense of calm and relaxation." I can't see anyone saying no to that. And something that has come in very useful for me is the pallet of colours this year have been picked to cross the gender norms and have been tagged as 'unisex'. Very handy for decorating a nursery when you don't know what you're having!

Taking two traditional 'baby' colours like rose and a soft blue can create interesting effects. Autentico Antique Rose is a gentle tone that seems to convey compassion and a sense of composure.  Like the expanse of the blue sky above us, Serenity or Autentico Gers Blue comforts with a calming effect, bringing a feeling of respite even in turbulent times. Gers Blue provides us with a naturally connected sense of space while the Rose  offers reflection. Together I think they invoke childhood spings and summers when life was lighthearted and simple.

The rest of the colour pallet offer a range of self and bold colours that allow us to create individual effects. Designers and buyers have been in love with orange for several seasons - not something to my taste. However, Peach Echo is a frendlier, warmer shade and is easier to use in the home that the previous oranges. 

In our seaside location maritime colours never go out of fashion. Snorkel Blue or Autentico Nordic Blue is very firmly in the navy family, but with a happier, more energetic context. The name implies a relaxing vacation and encourages escape. 

While the majority of the Spring/Summer palette trends toward calmness, a few diversions from the theme emerge that offer a contrast. Buttercup or Autentico Brazilian Bird transports us  its wearer to a happier, sunnier place.

For us by the sea a shade of aqua is always a good choice.  Limpet Shell or Authentic Bright Turquoise is clear, clean and defined. Suggestive of clarity and freshness, it is crisp and modern yet tranquil. On the front of the shop we are right on trend for 2016! Matched with Brazilian Bird and Lime this is a fab colour combination. 

As in any season, the need for neutrals arises. Essentially a basic, the subtlety of the lilac undertone in, Lilac Gray or Autentico Amerthyst, adds a distinctive edge. 

The high energy Autentico Red Stripe or Fiesta is a strong and fiery provides a stark contrast to the calming, softer nature of this season’s palette.

A transitional color that will take us through the seasons, Iced Coffee or Autentico Burnt Sienna  manifests as another strong neutral for the season. With its natural earthy quality, the softness and subtlety of this colour creates a great foundation for all the other colours. 

And finally Green Flash is an escape from the mundane. This is  nature’s persistent influence, a trend continuing to inspire designers. With such a fantastic range of colours there are endless colour combinations. I'm looking forward to a white background with a few accent pieces to create a stunning, tranquil unisex with only 8 weeks to go it I'd better get on and do it!




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