Pantone Chooses Marsala as Color of the Year for 2015


Pantone Color Institute’s choice of Marsala as the color of the year for 2015 is literally heart-warming. The earthy, red-brown, full-bodied stability of the wine is well-loved in beverages and special dishes. Pantone’s annual selections often dictate color in fashion, beauty products, housewares and home furnishings in both haute couture and street fashion environments.

In an annual event over the course of the last 15 years, Pantone has selected a “Color of the Year” by studying areas as different as popular culture, fashion, art, entertainment and travel hotspots. Their predictions are based on their conclusions of the dominant hue for designs and products in the coming year.

The objective is to identify a color that symbolically reflects current world issues and sentiments. Hence, in 2013 as global economies showed a slow turnaround, Emerald Green exemplified growth, renewal, and prosperity, an encouraging factor for the collective consciousness. As a next logical step, the 2014 choice Radiant Orchid, facilitated creativity and innovation. Marsala closes the circle by enriching mind, body and soul, exuding confidence and stability. As Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director at Pantone so succinctly states, the color choice has to echo around the world, its radiance an expression of the state of the planet.

Pantone then further refines and defines the color choice. They take a deep dive into ways and means to use it in different lifestyle and business niches.

The color experts convene for a secret two-day summit and present their top choices. The merits of each are debated until a conclusion is reached. The color for the new year is unveiled for the public each December and recorded in the Pantone View, priced at $750 for fashion designers, decorators, and consumer corporations.

Eiseman says Pantone’s choice of the color Marsala for 2015 mimics the wine in its character. It is at once, strong, full-bodied and fulfilling. The complex shade overlays red-brown hues upon blue undertones for an overall dark blush effect. More, it is kissed by a sophisticated glamor.


The natural earthy hue is not far out trendy or too risky for the majority of tastes. It lends itself to nail, eye, skin or lip color, a dress, table linen, furniture and furnishings or even a man’s tie. The versatility of usage and its ability to blend with pastels and neutrals as well as strong solids will facilitate its being used in both traditional and novel forms. Just a touch will enhance, or a whole color scheme built around it will delight. Moreover, it can blend in and synthesize with what is already owned in makeup, dress or furnishings.

Sephora the cosmetics company brings out a limited-edition collection of beauty products based on Pantone picks. They plan to do the same with Marsala. Its burnished undertones are highly compatible with other earth tones such as golden yellows, umber, and amber. Green shades from aqua to teal, and vibrant blues all complement the color.

Utilizing its standardized system and numeric codes, Pantone has chosen Marsala as its top color for 2015. Their latest selection carries the code Pantone 18-1438.

By Bina Joseph


USA Today

Chicago Tribune

Shape Magazine

Photo by Hammonton Photography – Flickr License

Photo by RyanIsHungry –Flickr License


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