Pantone thinks this will be the color of 2019

Lewis Collier
December 7, 2018

The Pantone Color Institute has announced the color of the year for 2019: a mellow pinkish-orange hue called Living Coral (Pantone 16-1546).

Living coral is receiving the baton from a cousin on the color wheel, ultra violet - which, as NPR's Camila Domonoske pointed out a year ago, is not to be confused with invisible ultraviolet (note the lack of a space!) light.

'Symbolizing our innate need for optimism and joyful pursuits, PANTONE 16-1546 Living Coral embodies our desire for playful expression.

Previous announcements have been less subtle: In 2017, the colour of the year was Greenery, a bright spring green that Pantone suggested would "provide us with the hope we collectively yearn for amid a complex social and political landscape".

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Since naming cerulean blue the color of 2000, the Pantone Color Institute has been passing the crown to a new shade each year, basing its choice on trends observed in a wide variety of areas - including "entertainment industry and films in production, traveling art collections and new artists, fashion, all areas of design, popular travel destinations". Influences may also stem from new technologies, materials, textures, and effects that impact colour, relevant social media platforms and even upcoming sporting events that capture worldwide attention. "Sociable and spirited, the engaging nature of PANTONE 16-1546 Living Coral welcomes and encourages lighthearted activity". "With consumers craving human interaction and social connection, the humanising and heartening qualities displayed by the convivial PANTONE Living Coral hit a responsive chord".

Living Coral is ascending, Pressman said, at a time when bleaching due to climate change continues to rob actual coral reefs of their rainbow hues. Pressman also sees a retro vibe to Living Coral, in the same way a softer version of the 2018 pick, Ultra Violet, is the shade of some gray heads when hair toners bring on a turn to purple.

Living Coral is vivifying, but it's "not so overpowering and in your face", she said.

We've shared some of their recommended matching photographs below. "The Pantone Color of the Year has come to mean so much more than "what's trending" in the world of design; it's truly a reflection of what's needed in our world today", Pressman explained last year.

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