Color me purple: Spring fashion

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Posted by Renée Sande on March 29, 2018, 10:47 a.m.

As the seasons change, we can also count on fashion trends changing.

And one of the big powerhouse trends in style is color. It influences our moods, communicates our life values and expresses our personality.

The Institute for Color Research reveals that people subconsciously judge an environment or product within 90 seconds of viewing, and between 62 to 90 percent of that assessment is based on color alone.

Perhaps this is why the Pantone Color Institute – known as “the definitive language of color” – handpicks a committee of 10 professionals across a broad selection of industries to meet twice a year in secrecy in a white-walled room somewhere in Europe.

Woman in purple dress

So what emerged in Pantone’s Fashion Color Trend Spring 2018 Report? Several tones, but a big one is purple, or violet, if you want to get fancy.

Lisa Feighner-Brulotte, owner of A Finer Moment in North Spokane, which carries prom, bridesmaid and special occasion dresses, has already seen a broad selection of color shades, from pastel to gem to vibrant, as well as foundational colors.

“It’s a really varied palette but definitely the hottest new color for 2018 is purple, and shades of it—burgundy, plum, violet....you name it. I’m also seeing a lot of rose and light yellows showing up, with the blues and grays continuing from fall and winter—classic colors that are always good go-tos.”

Susan Carmody, owner of Jigsaw, in downtown Spokane, agrees.

“Navy still pulls very, very strong, there’s a small amount of orange-red colors, and the color that’s emerging, that’s relatively unexpected — besides the basics, black, white, sprinkles of red — is lavender and tones of purple.”

In addition to the prevalence of purple, a couple of surprises this year are the very vibrant Lime Punch and Cherry Tomato, especially beside the softer colors such as Almost Mauve and Blooming Dahlia.

“The color story was designed for men and women…to celebrate exploration, experimentation and their desire to mix, blend and create the unexpected…with an overall feeling of optimism and confidence,” summarized Pantone Color Institute’s executive director, Leatrice Eiseman.

Lainey LaRue, owner of LoLo Boutique in Downtown Spokane, as well, has noticed the colors to be very calming.

“There are a lot of pinks, rose tones and lavenders in the spring/summer lines, and I’m slowly seeing those colors pop up in our home accessories, as well,” she said.  “We’ve also been seeing some lighter neutrals – grays and taupes – that have a very peaceful, kind of quiet and calming feeling about them – which we all need right now, no matter what side we’re on, don’t we?”

Amy Driscoll, owner – with daughter India – of Boutique Bleu in Kendall Yards, says she’s seeing the new, more subtle colors seep into home collections.

“We’re actually just getting ready to go to market but we’re starting to see in our home accessories, very subtle colors—so the mint color is barely mint, and the blue is barely, barely blue, it’s just beautiful and very pure looking.”

“From what I can tell it looks like red is also going to be hot this year—like a poppy red—which I don’t carry a lot of but will probably bring in a bit, and I’ve also seen some really pretty yellows, as well,” says Driscoll.

From calming and serene to fun and playful, one thing is for sure, the feel-good tones of the Spring 2018 color story are complex and distinctive—the perfect opportunity to get creative with our color mixing.