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Trend watch: A brighter outlook this year

Home accessories are taking a cue from the world of fashion this year with bright new, upbeat colors

During tough economic times, color trends in the world of fashion and home accessories tend to reflect the somber mood of the nation with neutral hues such as grays, blacks, and beiges dominating the colorscape. Vivid colors have become more prevalent this spring in fashion and the home market, and hopefully the upbeat colors will translate to a more optimistic economic mood.

From two different color experts, we find orange and blue as two of the colors to look for this spring and summer. Look around and see how these colors are used in fashion, marketing and advertising.

ORANGE: Used heavily in Renaissance paintings, orange used to be a color only for the elite, as only the wealthy could afford oranges. But times have changed and so has orange. Now orange is popular in European home accessory designs and is seen as whimsical and
indicating motion.

The world-renowned authority on color for nearly half a century, Pantone provides a color matching system concept for a broad spectrum of industries: fashion, home, technology, architecture, and paint. When ordering a custom product, many factories will insist on a Pantone color match to assure that the product is created to the correct specifications.

The Pantone color of 2012 is Tangerine Tango. According to Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute, “There’s the element of encouragement with orange. It’s building on the ideas of courage and action – that we want to move on to better things.”

BLUE: The color of integrity, loyalty and serenity, blue is constant and dependent. After all, the sky has never fallen. However, not all blues reflect calm. Subcolors such as Electric Blue can evoke excitement.

The color team at Benjamin Moore paints chose Wythe Blue as their color for 2012. Much more versatile than you may think, blue is truly a classic color. With a universal appeal, blue never goes out of style and is an overwhelming choice as a color favorite. It evokes the sea and sky, physically calms us, and symbolizes trust and commitment. It’s a beautiful, calming hue that has an element of heritage and offers grounding, thereby providing comfort and stability.

In your home, you may not decide to repaint every wall with these colors, but an accent wall or one room in a bright, fun color might be inspiring to wake to every morning. Or if you prefer your walls painted in neutral tones, a few housewares or home furnishings in a fun color can brighten your home and your mood. And if you’re unhappy with your choice of paint color, it just takes a fresh can of paint and a Saturday afternoon to change it!

Julia Strzesieski is the marketing coordinator for Cole Hardware and can be reached at julia@colehardware.com.
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