The Pantone Color Institute has played a major role in art and design trends since it first released its official color of the year in 2000. Nearly two decades later, Pantone is still making bold, unapologetic color choices. And in 2018, ultra violet reigns in every room in the house.
Here’s how to add this provocative color to the bathroom in a tasteful way.
Pair with Complimentary Shades
Pantone colors tend to be bold and unexpected. This can make them hard to style — especially when seeking a tasteful interior. Fortunately, clients faced with this challenge need not look further than the Pantone palette which accompanies each shade.
As design editor Leah Demirjian explains, each Pantone color is part of a larger palette meant to be mixed and matched within itself. In the 2018 palette, for example, ultra violet can be paired nicely with accent colors like russet orange, described as an “earthy forest floor orange,” and limelight, an “animated and effervescent” yellow green.
Complimentary shades, such as blue and orange, can create unusual but effective combinations as well. “This is quite an interesting color combination,” Pantone Color Institute executive director Leatrice Eiseman tells design company By Koket. “It combines warm and cool tones that you just can’t avoid looking at.”
Boldly Paint it All
While ultra violet isn’t technically a shade of purple, it still has a similar effect on a room’s mood and ambiance when painted fully across the walls. In a roundup of design advice by Jennifer Tzses at Mansion Global, the consensus seems that purples are great colors for bathrooms because they are soothing and calming.
Plus, assertive shades in the purple color family are better reserved for bathrooms, entryways and hallways — spaces where people don’t spend prolonged periods of time. This allows the person to experience the beneficial mood-enhancing benefits of the color without being overwhelmed.
If opting for this strategy, keep in mind that purple should always be paired with lighter shades. This prevents the space from feeling too dark. Rebecca Senyard of The Plumbette shows how consistent, simple color choices in a bathroom allow contrast fixtures and features to pop. A floating vanity is a good choice, because it’s already eye-catching, plus the color contrast elevates the effect even further.
Find Guidance in Color Meanings
It can also be helpful to delve into color meanings to see what ultra violet — and its possible pairings — might connote or elicit in people, Carrie Cousins at Design Shack writes. This way, homeowners can get a better idea about how the color makes people feel and whether or not it is creating the desired mood in the bathroom.
It’s also important to remember that a single color can have multiple different meanings depending on those it is paired with. The team at Dura Supreme Cabinetry says that ultra violet can be used to create cool, tranquil spaces. At the same time, the color can evoke feelings of positive energy and liveliness, depending on how it’s used and what it’s paired with.
Choose the Door-Only Approach
Many houses opt for a brightly-colored front door in shades like red or green. Kate Wood, senior editor at This Old House, showcases a home that follows this approach on their home’s front door.
This entryway balances the purple door with white and gold, adding elegance to the regal look. This is easy to replicate in the bathroom, since gold fixtures and white walls are standard, timeless choices that won’t go out of style anytime soon.
Pick Pretty Patterns
Homeowners might also choose to incorporate ultra violet into the bathroom in the form of patterns. Olivia Heath at House Beautiful highlights a number of modern bathrooms that have adopted this approach.
In one, a wall of asymmetrical octagons in monochromatic shades, varying from white to ultra violet, make a small bathroom wall feel more dynamic. This is amplified by the same pattern scheme across the floor. The accent wall is balanced with a tiled purple wall on the opposite side.
Tiles in ultra violet patterns can also create a fun and fresh look in the bathroom. Natalie Gontcharova at Refinery 29 suggests an ornamental tile design, which looks great in bohemian or tropical inspired bathrooms. Something less exotic could also work well, too. Specifically, vintage bathroom designs lend themselves to this hue.
Opt for Violet-Hued Art
Art is one of the best ways to incorporate color and pattern into the bathroom. But when it comes to a color like ultra violet, some people might be unsure about how this color can be matched and highlighted gracefully.
To make this easier, design writer Anne Quito points to the online art gallery Saatchi Art, which partnered with Pantone to find works of art that leveraged the color. In one example, a Prince portrait by artist Angie Jones highlights the hue in varying monochromatic shades.
She also notes that Claude Monet is famous for having painted a variety of violet-hued paintings, which would highlight other ultra violet accents in a bathroom nicely. Whether its a bolder, more modern bathroom look or something more classic and traditional, there are certainly works of art that compliment any style.
For people who enjoy violet and purple shades, a monochromatic color scheme can be a great option. In one home featured by Arlyn Hernandez at Apartment Therapy, this is exactly what they did.
By pairing ultra violet with equal amounts of other purples, plums and violets, the actual Pantone shade feels balanced and elegant. Plus, this strategy shows just how powerful it can be when you pair a bold color with varying shades from its own family. Moreover, small pops of other colors, ranging from neutral to navy in this case, keep the monochromatic strategy from becoming overwhelming.
Keep it Minimal
Ultra violet is a lovely color, but not everyone wants to paint their bathroom in this vibrant hue. Opting for small touches and accents can be a safer approach. Ivy shows how items like throw pillows and rugs bring the color into spaces throughout the home without going overboard, which method could be used when decorating the bathroom.
In fact, the same idea would also work well for people who want to stay up to date with Pantone’s official color. If you opt to buy new hand towels every year, for example, or choose a fresh soap dish in this color, you can inexpensively adapt to Pantone trends in an important, yet understated way.
Instructional designer Guy Larcom shows how to pick colors in digital imagery and graphics, which is a great way to match accent pieces and art that you find online to the Pantone color of the year. This tool would also work well for vetting potential fixtures and design elements online, to see if they match or fit into the scene you’re creating.
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