2021 Pantone has chosen two Colours of the Year not one: Illuminating & Ultimate Grey

As the colour experts have done for over 20 years, and are setting the tone for the brand new year 2021 with their palette predictions and style guidance. Our homes have transformed into offices, classrooms, studios and more, to the point that our favourite spaces are now places to restore – not show off. Laying downtrends for home decor may seem out of touch with individual experience these days, yet the way we style the spaces around us is such an important part of how we express ourselves. These colour predictions for 2021 are a study of that very fact – reminding us that our emotions, productivity, and even restfulness are all interlinked with colour-theory and our surroundings.

2021 Pantone has chosen two Colours of the Year not one: Illuminating & Ultimate Grey

In true acknowledgement of the year that has passed, selecting two colours was more practical than just choosing one. PANTONE 17-5104 Ultimate Gray is grounded, practical and reliable, while PANTONE 13-0647 Illuminating (a bright and hopeful shade of yellow) promises brighter days. Individualistic, yet strangely complementary, the marriage of these two colours sends a message of unity and hope. Look for these colours to show up in office buildings and architecture, or maybe on your favourite pair of sneakers. Each colour can be used independently of the other, which opens up interpretations for all style preferences at home and in the world.

Sherwin Williams Color of the Year: Urbane Bronze

Compared to Pantone, the dramatically versatile shade chosen by paint company Sherwin Williams is a colour we can all get on board with. Encouraging retreat and renewal, Urbane Bronze is the everyday shade that can help turn a space into a sanctuary. This new neutral can be paired with other warm neutrals and bone whites in an approach to minimalism, or bring in modern greens, wood finishes and mixed metals to create a bolder look inspired by nature. If biophilic elements are part of your aesthetic, look no further than this nature-rooted shade to provide just the right backdrop.

Benjamin Moore Color of the Year: Aegean Teal

Although credence is given to Pantone for their annual colour selections, paint store Benjamin Moore has really hit the mark this year. Their chosen Aegean Teal 2136-40 is naturally harmonious with light and airy neutrals and earth tones. Calming, yet distinctive. Eleven additional colours create a trendy palette around this colour, for full home integration. With names like Potters Clay, Foggy Morning, Grey Cashmere, and Silhouette, their range of colour calls to mind the little ways we find joy when we’re stuck inside. Within those small moments, we are reminded why having a beautiful space is meaningful to so many.

More Like Guidelines

If you feel disconnected from this selection, unsure how it could translate into your life or your home, just know that these style predictions are not guiding rules. You should feel free to explore any colours that speak to you. The conveyance of a year’s worth of shared experience into a colour palette is more of a statement than instruction – more so this time than in years past. Pantone’s Color of the Year is always widely anticipated, the result of thoughtful consideration for what people have been through and where they might be beheaded. The yellow/grey combo may feel a bit jarring at first, but perhaps that’s what makes them such an appropriate choice.