Every year since 1990, the Pantone Colour Institute nominates a Colour of the Year, forecasting which specific hue designers and consumers will all supposedly be using, wearing, and buying for the following 12 months. The colour is believed to connect with the zeitgeist. Last week, Pantone announced that the 2015 Colour of the Year is Marsala.  

“Much like the fortified wine that gives Marsala its name, this Pantone colour embodies the richness of a fulfilling meal, while its grounding red-brown roots emanate a sophisticated, natural earthiness. This hearty, yet stylish tone is universally appealing and translates easily to fashion, beauty, industrial design, home furnishings and interiors.”


The Versatility of Marsala according to Pantone:

  • The rich and full-bodied, dramatic red-brown Marsala brings colour warmth into home interiors.
  • Whether in a flat or textured material, or with a matte or gloss finish, this highly varietal shade combines dramatically with neutrals, including warmer taupes and grays. Because of its burnished undertones, sultry Marsala is highly compatible with amber, umber and golden yellows, greens in both turquoise and teal, and blues in the more vibrant range.
  • Marsala’s plush characteristics are enhanced when the colour is applied to textured surfaces, making it an ideal choice for rugs and upholstered living room furniture.
  • An earthy shade with a bit of sophistication, texture is the story in print and packaging. A matte finish highlights Marsala’s organic nature while adding a sheen conveys a completely different message of glamour and luxury.

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There have been mixed reactions to the colour choice;

In a post titled “The Problem With Pantone’s Colour of the Year,” The Atlantic pointed out that Marsala reminded some people of “rust, the grimy, gag-inducing type that lines corners or frat boy dormitory-style bathrooms. Or blood, the freaky dried kind whose iron content has been exposed to the air long enough to evoke a dull brick.”


The DECO team are intrigued by the colour; Laureen even had a top dyed the very same colour two weeks prior to the announcement! What are your thoughts? Yay or nay? Speak to us @ELLE_DECO.