Ultra Violet – the colour of 2018?

Ultra Violet has been named as the “Color of the Year 2018” by Pantone.

So what does this mean? Pantone is an American company that has developed a system for defining and standardising colours. It also forecasts future colour trends, and each year predicts the colour that they think will be most important. This year, 2018, Pantone predict that we should be seeing Ultra Violet coming to the fore in fashion, interiors, product design, cosmetics, packaging, and many other areas.

Seeing the Ultra Violet colour on its own, I have to admit that it reminds me of a certain chocolate bar. But, coincidentally, on 1st January 2018 a friend gifted me a lovely dress in this colour. My newly started moleskin notebook is also this colour. So maybe, for me at least, it will be a significant colour.

To help designers, Pantone have put together a page of information about Ultra Violet – https://www.pantone.com/color-of-the-year-2018-tools-for-designers – and this includes some suggestions for different colour palettes which allow Ultra Violet to take on different identities and feelings.

Using the suggested colour palettes and a great tutorial from Veronica Galbraith on recolouring designs – found here – I decided to spend some time playing and recolouring an existing design. I used the randomly recolour option to free my mind from its preferences and preconceptions. Here is the same design recoloured in the 8 different palettes, together with Pantone’s titles for those palettes.


I found some of the palettes challenging and initially unattractive, but it was interesting to see the variations that they produced. I was especially struck by how the different warm/cool and light/dark combinations emphasised different aspects of the pattern.

I certainly have plenty of ideas now of different colours to wear with that dress. My favourite colourway is probably “Drama Queen”, which I think would be lovely as a big pashmina-type scarf or even a throw for the sofa or bed. “Floral Fantasies” surprised me the most because of its lightness and delicate touch.

Recolouring this design has given me ideas for how to re-visit and re-develop it, so that is a task for another day. In the meantime, I’d love to hear what you think of Ultra Violet and how you might use it in your home and life.