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Ways to incorporate Pantone’s colour of the year


For this year, Pantone has chosen the colours of the year as ‘Ultimate Grey’ and ‘Illuminating’, noting that this is a marriage of the colours grey and yellow, conveying strength and hopefulness that is both enduring and uplifting. How apt after the crazy year we experienced in 2020.

According to the brand, “As people look for ways to fortify themselves with energy, clarity, and hope to overcome the continuing uncertainty, spirited and emboldening shades satisfy our quest for vitality. Illuminating is a bright and cheerful yellow sparkling with vivacity, a warming shade imbued with solar power. Ultimate Grey is emblematic of solid and dependable elements that are everlasting and provide a firm foundation. The colours of pebbles on the beach and natural elements whose weathered appearance highlights an ability to stand the test of time, Ultimate Grey quietly assures, encouraging feelings of composure, steadiness, and resilience.”


“The selection of two independent colours highlight how different elements come together to express a message of strength and hopefulness that is both enduring and uplifting, conveying the idea that it’s not about one colour or one person, it’s about more than one. The union of both colours express positivity supported by fortitude,” said Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director of the Pantone Colour Institute. “

“The colours reflect what is taking place in our global culture. As society continues to recognize colour as a critical form of communication and a way to symbolize thoughts and ideas, many designers and brands are embracing the language of colour to engage and connect.”

Since yellow and gray are not the most popular colour combinations, we want to show you three simple ways you can incorporate these contemporary hues into your life. Think fashion, beauty, and living.


Pantone’s 2021 shade of yellow is bumble yellow while the grey is classic/carbon grey. First, take a look at your wardrobe to see what you have in those colors and start with those. You can consider shopping for pieces in those shades to complement what you have in either color. Pair yellow top and gray pants or vice versa. Grey shirt and yellow skirt or the reverse. How about a yellow dress and grey purse paired with silver shoes?

If you’re not one for bright nails, you can wear your traditional neutral colors and have a simple design done with yellow and gray nail polish or try nails with grey outlines and a yellow outline on one fingernail for a Pantone-approved look. If bold nails were made for you, you can go all out with yellow nails and highlight one finger with grey.

Interior decor
With interior decoration the options are endless. You can start small with yellow and grey throw pillows or small pieces around your living space. Elevate a space with a yellow accent chair and grey throw pillows or go big by changing up your wall colors with either wall paper or paint. Whatever you decide to do, make sure it matches most of your furniture so you don’t end up throwing things off balance or doing way too much and spending a fortune changing things up later.


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