Skip navigation
Special Events
Pantone Color Experts Forecast Color Trends for Summer 2013

Pantone Color Experts Forecast Color Trends for Summer 2013

Orange will stay strong, but can black make a comeback? Pantone's color expert weighs in.

Blues and browns will grow in importance while red will fall back next year, according to a color trend forecast from color experts at Pantone. Pantone vice president of fashion, home and interiors Laurie Pressman offered major trends for summer 2013 in a conference call Tuesday.

Special event design often follows fashion trends.

Browns are "growing in importance" and are "great alternative base tones," Pressman said. Black, meanwhile, "sits on eternal circle of ebbs and flows" and "seems in danger of being pushed aside," she said. However, she noted, of the 15 wedding gowns that superstar designer Vera Wang debuted in October, nine were black. Will black again be seen again as avant-garde? "We will see," Pressman said.

Peaceful neutrals will be strong next year, with greater intensity than in the past, Pressman said. While metallics were once rare, they have become "so much a part of everyday color language," she said. Look for metallics to shift away from standard gold, silver and bronze, instead being mixed with color to create a "playful iridescence."

Red will become "less important," Pressman said, and will show a growing influence of yellow. Along the same line, orange shades "are happy and bright and will stand out from the crowd," she said. Pink, "red's sister, continues to make itself known," she added.


In October, Pantone named "Tangerine Tango" the color of the year for 2012. Pressman said that this color will remain in the "top 10" this fall.

Whites--whether clean and bright or creamy and soft—will be "a core staple shade for 2013," Pressman said. Blues will be "less watery" and are "usurping the role that black used to play," she said. Yellows will be "fresher and clearer," "more vibrant" and feature "stronger tones," she said.

In fashion, Pressman said to watch for fabrics in dusty pinks, green-y blues and mid-tone yellows, along with a range of "delicate, waxy colors."


Clothing will feature materials with a sheen, having been coated, waxed or rubberized. Pressman said to look for a mix of natural and artificial materials, along with materials that have been hand-printed. As part of the public's yen for authenticity, fabrics will "look wanted and loved," she said, with a worn, eroded or rusted look.


Special Event Pros Forecast Color Trends for 2011-12

'Tangerine Tango' is Color of the Year for 2012, Experts Say

The Color of Events: How Color Packs a Punch in Special Event Design

Crazy for Color: KBY Designs Creates a Bright B'nai Mitzvah

Guest Room Q&A with Color Expert Margaret Walch

Hide comments


  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.