We Have Thoughts on the 2016 Pantone Color of the Year

The 2016 Pantone Color of the Year has been announced and as always, it has sparked a great debate here at HGTV.

Move over, Marsala. The Pantone Color Institute has spoken and 2016 is officially the year of two colors: Rose Quartz and Serenity.

Photo by: PANTONE Color Institute ©©PANTONE LLC


What caused the shift from a dark, neutral brown to light, airy pastels?

"As consumers seek mindfulness and well-being as an antidote to modern day stresses, welcoming colors that psychologically fulfill our yearning for reassurance and security are becoming more prominent. Joined together, Rose Quartz and Serenity demonstrate an inherent balance between a warmer embracing rose tone and the cooler tranquil blue, reflecting connection and wellness as well as a soothing sense of order and peace."

Naturally, our group of HGTV editors had some lively opinions about this selection. See what we think about Rose Quartz and Serenity and tweet us @HGTV to tell us how these colors make you feel.

Mallory: Pantone has announced that Rose Quartz and Serenity (two? Okay, sure.) are the colors of the year for 2016. My thoughts? Thank goodness it's not Marsala or anything close to Marsala. I'm still not huge on pastels, in general, but the name definitely fits and these colors make me feel very calm. I could watch the looping video on that Pantone landing page all day. I also get Jem vibes:



Photo by: Photo credit: Wikipedia

Photo credit: Wikipedia

What do you think? Love 'em? Hate 'em? What do they remind you of? Sound off!

Beth: Hate them, although something very similar to Rose Quartz is covering my fingernails.

Deanne: Maybe they were inspired by the cotton candy hair trend this year?

Abbi: So Pantone is bringing the 80s back with their color choices this year? I’m feeling the need to crimp my side ponytail and buy some Rose Quartz leggings to wear with my Serenity leotard.

Felicia: As a very non-princessy sort, I have tended to stay away from shades of Rose Quartz and other girly pinks. I may need to expand my horizons, but I'm not sure how my husband and son would respond to a sudden infusion of pink into our design scheme. I'm a big fan of Serenity and happen to have a shade very close to it on my living room walls. I get lots of compliments on the color and it's a nice complement to the neutrals in the room.

Kayla: Rose Quartz is one of my favorite neutrals, and I find myself using this shade in my home, accessories and clothing on the regular. There's nothing better than when this soothing hue is paired with bolder, more vibrant colors; it's all about the balancing act. But for me, Serenity is too soft and the two hues instantly feel washed out. I want to see Rose Quartz paired with navy blue, Marsala (yeah, I said it!) or deep granite gray.

Kelly: I'm not into these colors and would never use them in my home. I also think they need to change the name to plural (Colors of the Year) if they're going to choose two. It's just not right. 

However, I'm intrigued by the explanation of why they chose two colors. 

"In many parts of the world we are experiencing a gender blur as it relates to fashion, which has in turn impacted color trends throughout all other areas of design. This more unilateral approach to color is coinciding with societal movements toward gender equality and fluidity, the consumer's increased comfort with using color as a form of expression, a generation that has less concern about being typecast or judged and an open exchange of digital information that has opened our eyes to different approaches to color usage."

But still, they chose the two most stereotypical colors possible regarding gender to make this statement: pastel pink and blue. So while I appreciate the concept, this choice feels more symbolic than about an actual color trend. 

Beth: What Kelly said. I generally avoid baby showers because of all of the powdery pinks and blues.

Deanne: Mic drop. Gender-neutral design was on every runway this year but not in these colors. 

Marianne: I am personally all about that Rose Quartz life, but Serenity looks a tidge nursery to me.

Keri: I love cotton candy. Ask anyone. That said, I like to eat it – not decorate my home with it. 

Erica: After forcing myself to do the pop of color thing for the last few years, these Pantone picks are helping me come to an important realization: I need more calm and serene in my life. These colors make feel like I want to learn how to meditate and maybe not be so judge-y about inspirational quotes.

Briana: Oddly, almost every time I pitched a Color of the Month there for a while, it was a pastel, but I have to say that I’m vacillating from "meh" to "nay" on this combo. I even pitched colors that are somewhat similar to these two (Dusk Blue and Rose Smoke) and I love the color of Rose Quartz IRL, so maybe the pairing is really what I’m responding to here. Like, I like peanut butter and I also like jelly, but that peanut butter and jelly swirled in a jar? No thanks.

Something about putting them together screams "Nana's powder room" to me.

Chelsea: This is such a strange combo. It reminds me of grocery store decor from the early 90s. I want to sing an Ace of Base song and roller skate. That being said, I really like the Rose Quartz on its own.

And I agree with Kelly. The gender equality sentiment is understandable, but poorly executed. Gender doesn't have a color. Isn't that the point?

Lili: They do feel a little bit "baby" to me. I would've loved if was just Rose Quartz as a stand-alone winner. Gorgeous color.

Marianne: It kiiiiind of feels like they wanted Rose Quartz and then chickened out. Perhaps fearing another Marsala blowback? FYI, I have two burgundy bags and two pairs of shoes, so who's laughing now?

Lili: Completely agree. They didn't want to hear "ewww, baby pink!" so they went rogue.

Dana: These colors remind me of my sky dancer from the early '90s.



Photo by: Source

Mallory: I found one instance where I don’t hate it: 

Photo by: Source

Briana: Yes, it is the only acceptable one.

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