Each year since 2000, the colour company Pantone announce which hue is to be recognised as the Colour of the Year. After a joint title-holder was decided in 2017, when the pastel pink Rose Quartz and powder blue Serenity were both chosen, the 2018 Pantone Colour of the year has been revealed as Ultra Violet.
A deep yet vibrant purple shade, Pantone describe the Ultra Violet as enigmatic, unconventional and artistic. This is not, however, the first time Pantone have taken floral inspiration when searching for their Colour of the Year, Pantone have a long history of paying tribute to the hues of the garden.
Pantone’s second ever Colour of the Year was named Fuchsia Rose, a warm and lively pink inspired by the bold shades often found in roses. The theme of florals returned in 2004, when the Colour of the Year was announced as Tigerlily.
A bright orange shade with an undertone of red, Tigerlily is a nod to the beautiful and unusual shade found on the petals of the bloom. In 2007, the Pantone steered away from the flower beds and into the greenhouse as Chili Pepper was selected. A deep burgundy-red, the shade was inspired by the hue of chilli peppers at their ripest. In 2008, however, florals were firmly back in favour, with the 2008 Colour of Year taking inspiration from the iris.
Blue Iris is a pastel shade of lilac-blue that exactly mimics the colour found in the iris flower. One of the brightest hues found in any garden is the flower of the mimosa tree.
An almost fluorescent yellow, this bloom inspired the equally bold 2009 Colour of the Year, naturally also named Mimosa. 2011 saw yet another florally inspired shade crowned as the Pantone Colour of the Year - the soft, romantic pink seen in the honeysuckle flower. Honeysuckle, the name of the shade, is an equally beautiful pink. In 2014, the Colour of the Year paid homage to a pink bloom for the third time, the orchid.
It’s bright, cold-toned pink inspired the shade Radiant Orchid, which draws on the neon vibrancy of the orchid’s petals. Finally, the hues of the garden were present once again as the 2017 colour was chosen.
A broader theme rather than a specific flower, Greenery is a bright botanical green. Taking inspiration from all areas of the garden, the shade is reminiscent of well-manicured lawns, summer leaves and ripe herbs. In just 18 years of existence, the Pantone Colour of the Year has been related to flowers and the garden on nine occasions, proving that nature is the ultimate inspiration for colour.