Pantone Color
of the Year 2018

When it comes to sales and marketing, we have to talk about graphic design (or design at all) trends. In our culture, design has such a strong influence that it establishes its own traditions. One of these traditions is the annual color of the year announcement by the brand Pantone. Each year, the Pantone Institute announces the annual color leading most trends.

1. What is Pantone?

Founded by advertising executives Mervin Levine and Jesse Levine of M&J Levine Advertising, Pantone Inc. is an American corporation, based in Carlstadt, New Jersey. It is very well known for its properiary color space Pantone Matching System. In 2007, Pantone Inc. was purchased by X-Rite Inc.a supplier of color software and measurement instruments.

A breakthrough in the company’s operation was the development of new colored inks by an employee, Lawrence Herbert. Pantone Inc. products are featured among the Pantone Guide or Pantone Matching System (PMS). Within the company, there are various institutes and laboratories continually working on being innovative. The brand also sells an enormous amount of products like mugs, notepads, mouse pads, albums and many other gadgets.

2. What is Pantone Matching System and what is it used for?

Pantone Matching System (PMS) is a color standardization system that helps in color identification and matching. PMS uses the Pantone numbering system (which includes 1761 colors) to identify colors.

The colors are represented by numbers (for example 17-1463 Tangerine Tango -the color of the year 2012) with its unique features named C, U, M which stands for “coated,” “uncoated” and “matte,” respectively.

  • Pan­tone For­mula Guide Coated
  • Pan­tone For­mula Guide Unco­ated
  • Pan­tone For­mula Guide Matte

It is used mostly in the printing industry and in the manufacturing of paint, as well as in plastics and fabrics.

3. RGB, CMYK and Pantone

RGB is taken from the first letters of the words meaning colors. That is Red (red) – Green (green) – Blue (blue). Other colors such as yellow or pink are the result of combining these three primary colors. When adding individual components to each other, the color approaches white. it’s worth pointing out and remembering the fact that all cameras also use this mode. That’s why all the photos we take from the camera are RGB photos and as such are not suitable for professional printing yet. RGB works only for displays.

CMYK Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, K (black) are colors obtained by mixing them together by applying paint layers to the printed surface, but unlike the RGB mode, the more components we add, it will become darker. It is used for printing.

Colors from the Pantone one palette are created by mixing 18 pigments (including white and black). It should be remembered that their mapping on CMYK and RGB scales is not completely obvious. So what we see on even the best calibrated monitor will not be faithful to color in printed materials.

Thanks to the use of Pantone colors, the colors of the logo are identical everywhere. We would not have obtained such an effect if we had created logotype prints exclusively from CMYK. Each printer prints differently, uses paint from various suppliers- not to mention machines, substrates and pigmentation. However, pantone inks, which meet strict standards will in most cases always have the same shade and tone.

Pantons are also used to refine prints, for instance, with special colors such as gold. In the palette you will find very metallic, shiny colors, imitating eg gold or silver, additionally making the print more attractive.

4. What is the Pantone Color Institute? The Role of the Pantone Color Institute in creating design trends around the world

The Pantone Color Institute is a department of Pantone Inc. which provides consulting services to companies regarding the choice of color for their brands and products. The institute also focuses on trend forecasting, custom color solutions, product palette selection, color strategy, etc. The Pantone Color Institute partners with global brands to leverage the power, psychology and emotion of color in their design strategy. Is recognized around the world as a leading source of color information.

Its motto is “When 80% of human experience is filtered through the eyes, we understand that the choice of color is critical.

5. Pantone Color of the year 2018


Since 2000, representatives of branches from different countries meet in a chosen European capital to debate what color is deserving of being chosen as the honorable title of Pantone Color of the Year. They talk and present their views over a period of two days, twice a year, resulting in a decision that must be approved one year in advance. The results of the meeting have been published since 2004 in a special guide for PantoneView designers, which sets the standard for the upcoming season.

It is so highly regarded that is followed by brand, fashion, interior, and graphic designers from all over the world.

This years’ color of the year is PANTONE 18-3838 Ultra Violet which, according to the institute, “(…)dramatically provocative and thoughtful purple shade communicates originality, ingenuity, and visionary thinking that points us toward the future.(…) symbolizes experimentation and non-conformity, spurring individuals to imagine their unique mark on the world, and push boundaries through creative outlets.






Every season, the Pantone Color Institute creates a PANTONE Fashion Color Trend Report; an overview of the fashion designers’ colors at NY Fashion Week. Thanks to the colors on the catwalk, the PANTONE Fashion Color Trend report is a guide to the most important color trends of the season.

SPRING 2018:

“The Pantone Color of the Year has come to mean so much more than ‘what’s trending’ in the world of design; it’s truly a reflection of what’s needed in our world today.”

– Laurie Pressman, Vice President of the Pantone Color Institute