COLOR ME WHAT? Where Color Trends and Hot Hues Come From

Where Color Trends and Hot Hues Come From

color faceIn the 1957 Fred Astaire and Audrey Hepburn starrer “Funny Face,” the Eve Arden-played fashion magazine dyonne exhorts her staff to “think pink!” While in real life, Vogue’s late legendary fashion icon Diana Vreeland made fashion world-shaking pronouncements such as “pink is the new navy.”

We hear so much about color trends and hot hues, but how are these decisions really made? For a crash course, let’s take a look at this clip called the “Cerulean Monologue” from “The Devil Wears Parda” , when Meryl Streep’s fashion editor extraordinaire Miranda Priestly explains all to her fledgling fashion assistant played by Anne Hathaway.

What do color forecasters realy look for when determining trends championed by fashion heavvies both real and reel-based ? You may be surprised to learn that the main focus no longer points solely to the catwalks of New York, Paris and Milan. Many resources are key—current and predicted economic conditions, travel destinations, cinema, theater, trade shows, and various trend-watching organizations, websites and blogs.

Color Meanings and BrandsThe use of color in or on a product is the science of assisted behavior modification. Designers use color to move us to a purchasing decision whether it’s a car, a dress, a pillow, a table, a computer or a refrigerator. They beckon us to purchase things, say things, and feel things about ourselves and about our environments.

Color Emotion GuideUltimately, it’s the designers who select the new colors in seasonal fashion. But they have thousands of people influencing and helping them make those precise decisions, and mountains of data to help them choose the exact hues colors to motivate the desired emotional and financial response.

Timing-wise, color trends are approximately two years in the making. Several global organizations engaged in this determination. The most influential are the Color Marketing Group (CMG), based in Alexandria, VA, the Color Association of the United States (CAUS), in New York City and the International Colour Authority, headquartered in London, UK as you can tell from the spelling of ‘colour’.

CMG LogoThe Color Marketing Group (CMG) is an international association for color design professionals that identifies the direction of color and design trends and translates them into salable colors for manufactured products. Composed of nearly 1,000 members in 20 countries, CMG forecasts trends from one to three years in advance for myriad products and services.

Annually, CMG members work to produce Color Forecasts from North America, Asia, Europe, and Latin America.  Combined, they form CMG’s World Color Forecast that is revealed each November at the International Summit.   The Color Forecasts emanate from CMG’s Color Forecasting Workshops – called ChromaZones – that are held throughout the world during which participants discuss the trends and influences driving color.

CAUS logoThe Color Association of the United States (CAUS) is an independent color trend forecasting and color consulting service to the business community, known for its textile color swatch book, the Standard Color Reference of America. Founded in 1915, The Color Association of The United States creates and delivers global color intelligence across industries. This membership based organization serves as premier forecast agent, specialized educator, and trusted advisor to color professionals whose responsibility is to ensure marketplace success for their color decisions in the realm of brands, product and service, and spatial environments.

ICA logoThe International Colour Authority (ICA) is a private organization publishing forecasts about colour trends for the coming seasons, to be used by industry designers. It also awards a Seal of Approval that companies may display in their promotional materials if the colour ranges they use are appraised by the ICA. How does it work? A panel of international colour specialists gathers twice a year in London to select the next colour palette. The selection is published 22 months ahead of the retail-selling season, thus constituting the earliest colour trend prediction available to the furniture design and textile industries.

Nowadays the ICA is one of the leading colour forecasters for the industry, along with the Color Marketing Group. Their forecast publications accurately predict market trends”, ranking them among “the favourite publications of many professionals”, according to an article published by the International Trade Centre.

Colours in the ICA colour guides are referenced using the Pantone standard, the Natural Color System (NCS) standard, or both.

Along as we’re on the subject, exactly what are the hot colors for fashion this Spring season of 2016?

Pantone Spring 2016Best known for the Pantone Matching System (PMS), the corporation published this lineup for you to use as inspiration from the very best global authorities on trends for your home, fashion, beauty, and just about anything and everything else to color your life.

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