Leatrice (Lee) Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute shared the insights and inspirations that went into creating the seven palettes in a keynote address at the Inspired Home Show 2023.
Both art and science are important factors in the colour and design trends influencing home and housewares right now, said colour expert, Lee, in her keynote, The art of living: Directional colour/Design Trends.
Lee, who is director of the Eiseman Center for Color Information and Training, said: “Being alive is an apt metaphor in a time when we are still, and we really are, emerging from the anxiety that has engulfed us in the last few years. We can’t ignore that. We know that no matter where we are in this ongoing process, it’s left an indelible and emotional mark on our lives that seeks relief, renewed optimism and rejuvenation.”
Art is an important part of that healing, said Lee, as it allows us to use our imagination, while science is important because it provides the very explanation for life itself.
Both art and science played an important role in the selection of the 2023 Colour of the Year, Viva Magenta, described by Lee as a nuanced crimson red that balances both warm and cool colours.
In art, Lee is particularly interested in the resurgence of surrealism, which portrays ‘dreams as an escape from reality’. Trending artforms which are more nature-based include regenerative design, which often offers a creative and quirky mix of colours, designs and materials that ‘bring new life to anything that is abused, under-used or otherwise neglected’.
When it comes to science, water, an essential source of life, is emerging as a theme in several ways. One is the popularity of the blue palette, associated with clarity, health and balance. Another is in the popularity of products coming from ocean-related materials. There’s also a continued popularity of pearlised finishes and metallics.
Entertainment is one of many industries Lee studies for future colour trends. This year, she cited the latest Avatar movie; an upcoming sequel to Disney’s Inside Out, where each character or emotion assumes a colour; and Despicable Me 4, incorporating blacks and whites.
Lee closed her session by outlining each of the seven Pantone View Home + Interiors 2024 palettes unveiled at the show.
- Sustenance – This palette reflects “the rituals of entertaining and dining that never goes out of style,” said Lee. It evokes feelings of creative cooking, love and laughter, and the joy of sharing. It involves greens, blue-greens, a yellow-green, some deeper tones and a suggestion of pink.
- Replenish – Lee called this ‘a water-born palette’, which involves many shades of blue but also incorporates apricot and pink to add ‘a touch of newness’. Evoking thoughts of self-care, hydration and calming bath rituals, it’s all about life balance and rejuvenation.
- Creative Mixology – Every colour family is represented here – even earth tones – in this palette that Lee called ‘great fun’. This palette is all about individuality and experimentation, allowing for free-spirited aesthetics and the mixing of old and new.
- Sanctuary – For those who want softness and steadiness, Sanctuary offers relaxation and harmony with several pastels, mid-tones and a deeper, chocolate-like brown. It inspires a simple environment, where smart technology solutions are hidden underneath the surface.
- Stylist – Inspired by fashion crossovers, this combination features many blues and blue-greens, but also incorporates metallics, which add a sheen and ‘the feeling of undulating water’. This palette feels both traditional and contemporary and has universal appeal.
- Surrealism – Consumers looking to escape from the everyday with unexpected and unusual colour combinations will likely appreciate this one. Described as ‘illogical, quirky and witty’, Surrealism evokes feelings of an uninhibited dream state.
- Scenic – Inspired by the prismatic hues in nature’s light spectrum, this palette is dynamic and visually arresting (think flashes of lightning, bold sunsets, reflections of bright colours on clouds). Pinks and purples combine with oranges and orange-pinks, as well as some earthy tones for a ‘quite beautiful’ effect, Lee said.