Behind the Color Trends

By Pacitti, Michael | Art Business News, Fall 2014 | Go to article overview

Behind the Color Trends


Pacitti, Michael, Art Business News


Color trends reflect how we live our lives, and our outlook on color has broadened thanks to today's new technology. Simultaneously, our boundaries between public life and private life have blurred, and our take on privacy has evolved. Some people desire to create a personal territory, away from the hustle and bustle of our world. Our age-old desire is to take shelter and find that peaceful inner space. Within the comforts of our home, we respond to a need for privacy. Color helps us abound in our nest.

The home also takes center stage when it comes to color trends and decoration. Original art, canvas transfers and Giclee are growing to fill large loft walls or high ceiling entrances. Mirrors are also welcome additions throughout the home. Traditional styling has merged with modern designs to produce a new "transitional" look.

We now live in a time more focused on natural environment, fresh eating and healthy living. Citrus and farm-fresh colors of vegetables, fruits and open fields help illustrate our way of life. Some colors have become more weathered and washed, as though they have worn down over the years, making our spaces feel lived-in and comfortable. Paint companies curate new neutral color palettes each year to help you find and create those moments of sanctuary in your home.

By staying on top of changing color trends, framers can harness color fads and boost their business.

A Colorful History

The human eye can see approximately seven million colors, many of which affect the viewer's mood and health. When naming colors, people rely on cultural conventions. Some cultures have a few names for all colors; others have dozens or hundreds of names. We learn to name colors the same way we learn to name animals, foods or letters of the alphabet: We look, someone else points and names, and after a while we get the connection.

Color trends have changed dramatically throughout the decades. In 1917 Evercote House Paint released one of the first color-trend forecasts for home interiors and exteriors. This practice continued for years and included paint for trend periods such as Victorian, Colonial, Jacobean and Art Deco. The original forecasts for interior and exterior home color came from paint companies. Today, paint companies such as Benjamin Moore, Pantone and Dulux still continue to track the color trends.

Consumers drive color trends. A color cannot be a trend unless it sells. A color does not change; the consumer's attitude toward a color changes. Several factors will affect the trend including lifestyles and social changes, political events, travel, art, social media, music and cultural and global events. …

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