Each and every year Pantone bestows upon an individual hue the title “color of the season.” This can be, let’s be realistic, simply a marketing ploy to drum up excitement and sales in the beauty, fashion, and design worlds. Nevertheless, every year since 2000, the world’s arbiters of color have selected a color within its singularity to celebrate. Last year it was the menstrual Pantone 18-1438 (Marsala); the season before that this was the flowery Pantone 18-3224 (Radiant Orchid).
This season Pantone went rogue, choosing two colors it believes to become associated with some cultural force. The winners are Pantone 13-1520 TCX (Rose Quartz) and Pantone 14-3919-TCX (Serenity), also called pastel pink and blue. The fact that Pantone TCX Smart Colour Swatch Card chose not only two colors, however, these two colors, includes some blatantly political overtones.
Globally, our company is experiencing gender blur because it pertains to fashion, which includes consequently impacted color trends throughout all other parts of design. This more unilateral procedure for color is coinciding with societal movements toward gender equality and fluidity, the consumers’ increased comfort with using color as a form of expression, plus an open exchange of digital information which has opened our eyes to several approaches to color usage that challenge traditional color associations.
To put it differently, by choosing two of the most loaded colors from the swatch book, Pantone hopes to shatter stereotypes and promote gender equality. We obtain it: Pantone probably thinks that by presenting two colors with your culturally ingrained associations, it’s providing people with the chance to challenge those norms. Pink razors for men! Blue razors for women! And fair enough-it’s an admirable goal, if a little derivative (see also: the transgender pride flag). The interesting thing about all of this is the fact, a little while ago, the gender connotations of the two colors were inverted.
As I soon learned, however, pink was actually considered one ideal to boys until as late as the 1950s. Blue was the girlie color. Pink, inasmuch as it is a watered-down red-the fiercest of colors (does anyone doubt me here?)-was naturally connected with boys, using their instinctive attraction to fire trucks and dexmpky06 cars. The Ladies’ Home Journal in 1918 said, “The generally accepted rule is pink for your boy and blue for that girl. This is because pink, being a more decided and stronger color, is far more ideal for the boy, while blue, which is more delicate and dainty, is pertier [sic] to the girl.
It would’ve been just as effective (or else quite as provocative) for Pantone to promote a similar message having a totally neutral color. Seafoam green, perhaps? In the end, it’s totally easy to support a cause without reinforcing gender stereotypes.
Having said that, we should admit the colours actually are lovely together. Maybe it’s the decades of cultural associations talking, nevertheless the two look right in your own home alongside the other person, just like a delightfully sweet cloud of swirled cotton candy. Even with no heavy-handed lesson in gender politics, I’d buy Rose Quartz and Serenity since the Colors of 2016-why shouldn’t they be? They’re both gorgeously gentle hues that complement the other person. I recently can’t help but believe that your message would’ve been louder had there been no message at all.