Colour Inspiration: The 2018 Pantone Color of the Year, Ultra Violet

With over 17 years in the making, the Pantone Color of the Year forecast has widely become recognised as a benchmark for colour trends, with the chosen hue quickly finding its way into the mainstream almost as soon as it’s unveiled. The colour of 2018, Ultra Violet (a galactic-inspired, deep shade of purple), is beginning its purple reign, making its mark on everything from Tom Ford’s new lipstick, Saatchi artHaute Couture, and of course our homes and flowers. It’s a bold move away from the pioneering pastel duo of 2017 and a colour intended to inspire innovation and forward-thinking. So, in the spirit of the theme, we’re going to take a closer look at Ultra Violet and how you can incorporate this exciting, new punchy hue into your home with flowers.

The 2018 Pantone Color of the Year, Ultra Violet
The 2018 Pantone Color of the Year, Ultra Violet

We begin with our colour-loving friend, Martha Roberts from The Colour File Blog. A journalist, blogger and self-confessed colour magpie, she is certainly no stranger when it comes to the topic and our go-to expert for all things colour. We asked Martha for her thoughts on incorporating Ultra Violet into the home.

“Ultra Violet comes as a really striking and eye-popping surprise after Pantone’s easygoing choices over the past few years, like Greenery (green), Rose Quartz (pink) and Serenity (pale blue). I think 2018 is all about being brave, forward-thinking and pushing yourself out of your comfort zone and Ultra Violet reflects and supports this zeitgeist perfectly.

I’ve been a huge fan of purple since I was a child – growing up in the 1970s, I had purple paisley wallpaper in my bedroom and made my mum paint our front door purple, too. It was all about the purple! However, I find that generally, people are scared of purple, viewing it like an eccentric relative who they don’t quite know how to handle! This is where flowers and floral arrangements have such a vital role to play. They enable people to ‘play with purple’ without having to commit to permanent solutions like paint, wallpaper or fabric.”

Blueish-purple clematis
With a distinctly blueish-purple hue, clematis is an ideal flower to convey Ultra Violet into floral designs and available all year round

So, how do we go about incorporating Ultra Violet with flowers? McQueens Head of Events, Emily Mathison, offers her advice.

“Trends in flowers isn’t quite a cyclical as they are in fashion but year to year they do come through. Last year’s Rose Quartz and Serenity were much softer and this was definitely reflected in flowers. We have enjoyed working with very vintage tones for a number of years now and we adore them but we are seeing a much more adventurous use of colour now. People are much more willing to go out there, especially with colour clashes, as we saw at the Wayfair Happy House recently.”

Ultra Violet is a strong, punchy colour, in terms of working with it, it looks really amazing as a statement all on its own but you can soften it with pale greys and lilacs and tones of that nature. If you were to introduce pink this would work really well, be it neon (for a super contrast) or a pale pink for something more subtle.”

Ultra Violet Vanda Orchids
Beautiful on its own or combined with a variety of blooms, the Vanda orchid is a striking example of vivid Ultra Violet

“When it comes to flowers, the new purple XL anemone is probably the most striking example of this colour at its most vivid,” adds McQueens shop manager and senior florist, Andrea Bassoli. “They are part of a newly developed variety of anemones, including Magenta, Red, Tiger and Celeste — a unique, pale violet hue which we’ve combined with giant cloni ranunculus in our new Nova bouquet. They are incredible flowers, much bigger than their predecessors and much longer lasting, too. They open quickly but last for longer, you couldn’t ask for a more ideal flower and they would be my first choice for anyone wanting to introduce Ultra Violet into their home, without the commitment of permanent decor.

Violet anemones
A firm favourite with us at McQueens, anemones are a fabulous winter flower and an ideal bloom to convey Ultra Violet in the home (without the commitment of permanent decor)

What are your thoughts on the 2018 Pantone Colour of the Year? Tell us over at @McQueensFlowers on FacebookInstagram or Twitter.