Design Studio Interior Solutions’ designer Laura Hodgson sheds light on Pantone’s vibrant and bold Color of the Year.

Pantone is known internationally as the world-renowned authority on color, provider of color systems, and a leader in the technology for the selection of color across a variety of industries.  They are responsible for most of what is available on the mass retail market by following high style, cutting-edge visionaries across numerous industries and emerging trends. They have a panel dedicated to traveling to every major trade show across the globe, from cars to jewelry and everything in between.  After distilling this information, they publish forecasts that are sought out by companies ranging in industry from graphic arts and fashion to home goods and industrial design. 

Needless to say, Pantone holds a significant amount of clout within the design world, dictating what color trends to expect in the coming year. Their goal with the color of the year is to capture the pulse of the world, and where we are in terms of our psyche.  This helps marketers and retailers understand our hopes, fears, goals and what we want… making it easier to effectively market their products.  Having followed the Color of the Year predictions for over 10 years, I can say that Pantone diligently seeks to understand what consumers are struggling with, and where our world is headed.  I have heard Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute, talk several times and find it fascinating to learn the process they follow to collect and distill this information.

Four years ago Pantone selected a shade of purple with red undertones, vibrant full of energy. This year, Pantone has opted for a moodier hue, Ultra Violet. Complex and contemplative, Ultra Violet suggests the mysteries of the cosmos, the intrigue of what lies ahead, and the discoveries beyond where we are now. Though the shade itself is dark and rich, the blue undertones suggest grounding calmness. It represents complexity, change, turmoil, and the strange comfort we find in embracing it. “Enigmatic purples have also long been symbolic of counterculture, unconventionality, and artistic brilliance,” Pantone states. “Nuanced and full of emotion, the depth of PANTONE 18-3838 Ultra Violet symbolizes experimentation and non-conformity, spurring individuals to imagine their unique mark on the world, and push boundaries through creative outlets.”

Regardless of shade, purple is an interesting color.  At the end of the visible spectrum, it is harder for our eye to process and which tends to confuse the mind as to how to feel about this color. In essence it knocks people off-balance, psychologically. By choosing this particular color, Pantone is creating a statement about the unique times we are living in now, and how the world around us is constantly shifting and changing.

Historically, there has been a mystical or spiritual quality attached to Ultra Violet. The color is often associated with mindful practices, royalty, and spirituality. In these nebulous times, it has become increasingly important to find grounding energies, recharging our batteries, and seeking higher purposes. The world is open to new possibilities and the unknown as we are all seeking to find our place and our joy.

Ultra Violet’s visceral effect on the global community can be emitted throughout your life, and most importantly, your home. If purple speaks to you, there are many ways to integrate it into your home’s design this year. A great place to start would be adding this eye-catching hue to your paint palette, accent pieces, and accessories.

For example, adding throw pillows, vases, or tableware is an easy way to incorporate this dynamic color. Many shades of purple pair beautifully with neutral interiors and look sophisticated with grey and dark brown. Modern homes can handle a pop of purple in a rug or accent wall and still maintain their quiet and refined aesthetic.

Homeowners who prefer traditional interiors could also take part in the trend by adding purple to olive or hunter green color schemes. Ultra Violet has also been paired with navy for a richer effect. Purple can be more “livable” and stay in style longer when mixed in with more traditional elements.


As always, Design Studio is here to help you figure out the best way to realize your home’s potential, and integrate vibrant colors and unique designs. Give us a call if you want to add a little individuality, mystery and Ultra Violet to your life this year.  We are happy to help!

Every year, we see a shift in design trends ranging from finishes and palettes to furnishings and materials. As innovations in the design world move confidently forward, we see the creation of new concepts, the invention of new materials, the curating of new styles and methodologies. All of this taken into consideration, Design Studio has laid out the trends that we see playing a big part in 2018 interior designs.


Experimental Color Palettes

This year, the bolder the color, the better. Both Pantone and Benjamin Moore, the industry’s top trendsetters and color experts, chose energetic tones as their respective winners for the color of the year. Pantone’s Ultra Violet, a lively grape tone, and Benjamin Moore’s Caliente, a rich, deep scarlet, let you make a statement experimenting with colorful accents. For finishes, we see matte black rising in popularity. Its contemporary neutral tone and uniquely versatile characteristics make it a modern choice for anyone looking to add a little edge to their design aesthetic.  


Meet Ultra Violet and Caliente.


Partial Glass Shower Dividers

Open concept designs are the fastest growing trends in interior design. For the bathroom, partial glass dividers are the latest way to add more natural light to your space and increase accessibility. This half sheet of glass performs the functionality of a divider and shower curtain in a chic, elevated fashion. With the partial partition, you can show off a statement shower with ease while maintaining an open and airy feel where you want it most.

Design Studio Interior Solutions original design.


Concrete Accents

Concrete is favored across the design spectrum for its chic urban vibe.  Striking yet humble, it wows minimalists and modernists alike for its distinguished industrial feel. Its cool and comforting gray tones create a relaxed atmosphere that’s strong and durable to the touch. In today’s on-trend styles, we see concrete being used in everything from walls and floors to coffee tables and countertops. For an easy introduction, try simple fixtures like lamps, planters, or candles.

Contemporary and bold polished concrete floors.


Bold Sofas and Chairs

If you’re looking to throw a statement piece into your home’s design, look for seating in bold colors and patterns. A colorful sofa perfectly balances form and function while adding a splash of color to the room. Not ready to commit to a statement color? Look for colorful slipcovers that let you see if a color works with the rest of your design.

Design Studio Interior Solutions original design.


Calm, Modern Bedrooms

Your bedroom should be a place of rest and relaxation where you can unplug, unwind, and get a good night’s sleep. Your design should support this stress-free sentiment, not hinder it. It’s best to avoid ornate design and jarring colors—save those for more public spaces where they will be more appreciated. Let calming colors lead your room’s design and decor. When picking your colors, opt for pale blues, grays, purples, or pinks. These quiet tones are scientifically proven to reduce stress. A good night’s sleep starts with a peaceful environment, and smart design is the first step.

Simple, clean, and monochromatic design.


Patterned Tile Backsplashes

A tile backsplash is a quick and easy way to add personality and color to any kitchen style. Subway tile, characterized by its large glossy rectangular pattern remains as popular as ever. However, we’re seeing more and more unique patterns as homeowners experiment with shapes, textures, and tones. Herringbone, arabesque, and hexagonal tile patterns are popping up more and more frequently as a fun way to personalize your cooking space.

Simple and sweet subway tile backsplash.


Florals Are Back

Spring is right around the corner and that means all things floral. But this year, flowery prints are getting a big update. Look for patterns with large, close-up blooms. Oversized floral patterns make a fantastic accent pattern, come in almost every color scheme and application imaginable. Mix up bedding, curtains, wallpaper, and rugs with this classic look. Pick up some stencils so you can customize your own look.   

Design Studio Interior Solutions
Our design center is located in Boulder, Colorado.
5400 Spine Rd Suite A, Boulder, CO 80301
(303) 652-1727