Top color combinations of 2017
Though color in design is largely subjective (what may appeal to one person may repel another), one way to keep your designs fresh is to stay up to date on color trends. Ninety-three percent of consumers say that visual factors are most important to them when purchasing a product. So, whether you’re working to design your company’s Instagram feed, a client’s advertisements or a product’s packaging design, a lot is riding on your color choices.
Interior design and fashion often are the first to pick out a year’s most popular shades, so keep an eye on leaders in those industries for cues. To make that job a bit easier, we’ve done this year’s research for you. Here’s four shades we found have been and will continue to trend through 2017 and into 2018, along with other colors they pair well with.
In 2016, pink was rebranded as a neutral suitable to be worn and loved by any gender (as predicted by one of Pantone’s colors of the year, rose quartz). Some blame the release of popular indie flick The Grand Budapest Hotel for the shade’s rise to fame while others point to the rose gold metallic trend solidified by 2015’s rose gold iPhone release. Regardless of where it came from, the traditionally feminine shade was seen everywhere last year in a pale tone, from packaging design to the fashion runway.
But pink of 2017 is louder and brighter, in line with a shift in popularity from pastels to more bold, energetic shades. Color blocking pink, mixing multiple shades of one color in design, is trending this summer.
Pair it with: If you’d rather stay on the safe, lighter side of pink, choose pair it with darker colors such as deep blues, grays or even black to help ground its upbeat tone. If you’re venturing into the realm of brighter shades, pair with a yellow green or turquoise if you’re going for an energetic feel, but be sure to add in neutrals to keep the drama from overwhelming your design.
As pale pink used as neutral fades out of trend, terracotta orange shades have snuck in to take its place. Possibly brought back into style alongside 90s fashion trends and designers’ gravitation toward the use of natural materials, pops of this color, ranging in shades from a fleshy peach to a deep rusted brown, are often used to add an organic, human element to a design.
Pair it with: The use of terracotta in any tone warms up a design dominated by stark whites and cool grays.
Green is the true color of the moment in 2017, thanks to the versatility of its tones. One shade, called Greenery, was Pantone’s color pick of 2017. The company calls it a “fresh and zesty yellow-green shade” which is “refreshing and revitalizing…symbolic of new beginnings.” A deep green can heighten the drama and energy of a design, making an eye-catching display. Softer, earthy green tones create a fresh yet soothing element in any design.
Pair it with: Darker hues pair well with metallics and bright whites for an elegant look while lighter, more organic shades match well with terracotta and taupe nudes mentioned above to create a natural and calming feel.
Bonus shade: Yellow
Yellow is just starting to have its moment and looks great as an accent color paired with neutral grays and whites or even deep blue as a nod to nautical.
Check out our blog for more posts on the psychology of color, color theory and the use of color in design.