Playful Escapism: The Pantone Spring 2016 Fashion Color Report

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It’s that season we love so much: the release of the Pantone Spring 2016 Fashion Color Report. While fashion is the focus, the colors trends are picked up by all creative industries — graphic design, interior design, and fine art, to name a few. This year’s colors range from vibrant to calming, and are non-gender specific.

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“For Spring 2016 there are truly no perceivable distinctions in color choices between the men’s and women’s collections, both of which focus on a desire to breathe and reflect, then play.”

The Pantone color experts carefully selected the colors to match with the experiences and feelings of today’s society. See how they chose the colors. You may also view the full report here, which also details color pairings and shows examples.

Influenced by the world of art, new global doors opening and the desire to disconnect from technology and unwind, designers this season have gravitated toward a palette that is first and foremost calming. Paying homage to the beauty of natural resources, colors emerging in the Spring collections serve as vehicles that transport wearers to more tranquil, mindful environs which encourage relaxation first, followed by curiosity and exploration.

Designers were also inspired by the contrast of urban design and lush vegetation, leading to unexpected color combinations and collections reminiscent of architecture, travel and nostalgia. By creating looks that truly represent the world we live in, both constructed and organic, designers sought to awaken a sense of reflection, followed by playful escapism. Artists, many of whom are known for bold color usage and strong shapes and lines, played an influential role in this season’s styles – from Matisse, Picasso and Frank Stella to Esther Stewart and Sam Falls. With Cuba and other destinations south of the border top of mind, designers are playing with courageous color statements that aren’t afraid to be vibrant but at the same time are combined with quieting, classic and more natural tones.

Let’s have a look at the colors. You may also match these colors in your designs using Pantone’s collection of sets and guides.

10 Pantone Colors for the 2016 Fashion Trends:

PANTONE 13-1520 Rose Quartz

Starting off with the perky Rose quartz, here’s what Pantone had to say:

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The soothing, calming nature of colors in the Spring collections are led by PANTONE 13-1520 Rose Quartz, a persuasive yet gentle tone that conveys compassion and a sense of composure. Like a serene sunset, flushed cheek or budding flower, Rose Quartz reminds us to reflect on our surroundings during the busy but lighthearted spring and summer months.

PANTONE 16-1548 Peach Echo

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The fashion and design communities, and consequently, consumers, have been in love with orange for several seasons. Coming to the fore this Spring is PANTONE 16-1548, Peach Echo, a shade that emanates friendlier qualities, evoking warmth and accessibility. It is an all-encompassing, tempered companion in the playful orange family.

PANTONE 15-3919 Serenity

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Weightless and airy, like the expanse of the blue sky above us, PANTONE 15-3919 Serenity comforts with a calming effect, bringing a feeling of respite even in turbulent times. A transcendent blue, Serenity provides us with a naturally connected sense of space.

PANTONE 19-4049 Snorkel Blue

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A maritime -inspired blue, PANTONE 19-4049 Snorkel Blue plays in the navy family, but with a happier, more energetic context. The name alone implies a relaxing vacation and encourages escape. It is striking yet still, with lots of activity bursting from its undertones.

PANTONE 12-0752 Buttercup

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While the majority of the Spring/Summer palette trends toward calmness, a few diversions from the theme emerge that offer a contrast. With PANTONE 12-0752 Buttercup, designers reveal a shining beacon transporting its wearer to a happier, sunnier place.

PANTONE 13-4810 Limpet Shell

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A shade of aqua that leans toward the green family, PANTONE 13-4810 Limpet Shell is clear, clean and defined. Suggestive of clarity and freshness, its crisp and modern influences evoke a deliberate, mindful tranquility.

PANTONE 16-3905 Lilac Gray

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As in most any season, the need for neutrals arises. Essentially a basic, the subtlety of the lilac undertone in PANTONE 16-3905 Lilac Gray, adds a distinctive edge to this classic gray shade.

PANTONE 17-1564 Fiesta

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The high energy PANTONE 17-1564 Fiesta is a harbinger of excitement, encouraging free-spirited exploration to unknown but welcoming locales. A strong and fiery, yellow-based Red, the vivid Fiesta provides a stark contrast to the calming, softer nature of this season’s palette.

PANTONE 15-1040 Iced Coffee

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A transitional color that will take us through the seasons, PANTONE 15-1040 Iced Coffee manifests as another strong neutral for the season. With its natural earthy quality, the softness and subtlety of Iced Coffee creates a stable foundation when combined with the rest of this season’s palette.

PANTONE 15-0146 Green Flash

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PANTONE 15-0146 Green Flash calls on its wearer to explore, push the envelope and escape the mundane, radiating an openness that combines with the rest of the palette in unexpected but serendipitous ways. The popularity of this brilliant hue is representative of nature’s persistent influence even in urban environments, a trend continuing to inspire designers.

Pantone’s color report also features profiles of the influencers behind the color section, color pair pairings and social media reviews. Check out the report here to find more information on these colors.


MyDesignShop offers the absolute lowest prices on Pantone products that you’ll find anywhere on the web, including the Pantone Plus Series sets. Your one stop shop for every different bundle for every type of job—from the comprehensive Pantone Plus Series reference library to specific color guides for Neons, Pastels and Metallics. Plus, there are even money-saving value bundles specifically designed to help you convert CMYK to Pantone.

Here’s some of our favorite Pantone Products:

PANTONE® Plus Series Solid Guide Set

Indispensable for multimedia graphic designers, pre-press and printers, the PANTONE SOLID Guide Set features the complete array of spot color choices — 1,761 market-proven SOLID Colors, including 644 new colors added since 2010, with 84 added just this year — plus 154 cool PASTELS, 56 hot NEONS, 300 dazzling PREMIUM METALLICS and 301 lustrous Metallics.

The PANTONE SOLID Color Set provides the widest selection of solid color choices for color and design professionals who demand choice, versatility and speed. Ink mixing formulas are provided. Compatible with today’s digital workflows. Text weight paper is used, to match popular print specifications. Includes lighting evaluation tool.

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PANTONE® Plus Series Solid Chips (2 Book Set)

The new PANTONE PLUS SERIES SOLID CHIPS two-book set contains all the colors of our PANTONE MATCHING SYSTEM® — plus all 644 exciting new colors added since 2010 — in a convenient chip format that attaches to artwork and digital files for easy and consistent color communication. This year alone we’ve added 84 new Blushes and Pinks, and clean and vibrant new Blues, Greens and Violets. Graphic designers, pre-press professionals and printers now have a total of 1,761 color choices to unleash their passion and let their creativity soar!

This product includes a free download of PANTONE COLOR MANAGER Software, a $49 value, upon product registration.

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PANTONE® Plus Series Portable Guide Studio

This nine-guide set includes PLUS SERIES Solid Color FORMULA GUIDES for accurate solid color specifying and matching; COLOR BRIDGE guides to determine how a PANTONE Color will appear when reproduced in CMYK or to create optimal display of PANTONE Colors on monitors and web pages; CMYK Guides, for working in process; PANTONE METALLICS Guide and the all new PLUS SERIES PREMIUM METALLICS Guide; and the updated PASTELS & NEONS guide, with a range of soothing pastels and eye-popping neons colors.

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PANTONE® Capsure: Monitor & Printer Calibration

Confidently Match Color to Almost Any Surface – Instantly!

Capture color inspiration from any surface, material or fabric – even small, patterned, multi-colored textures and textiles – and match it quickly and accurately to a PANTONE Color. The CAPSURE stores up to 100 color captures. It extracts, displays and matches up to four dominant colors from an intricate pattern. Pantone CAPSURE is also able to cross-match any material or surface. It easily integrates captured colors into your design programs – Adobe Creative Suite and QuarkXPress.

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