Presenting the Pantone Color of the Year: Living Coral 16-1546

By Orana Velarde 2 months ago


At the end of every year in December, the Pantone Institute announces their Color of the Year for the next year. The colour of 2019 is a lovely shade called Living Coral.


According to the official release from the Pantone colour experts, Living Coral is a colour that enlivens and energizes with a soft edge. It offers warmth and buoyancy to our ever-changing environment. Living Coral represents the human need for joyful pursuits and positive interactions.

Last year’s Color of the Year Ultra Violet was a huge success, with brands in many fields using the colour as inspiration for products and more. A favourite collaboration was one with Sephora when the Color of the Year was actually two colours in 2016! A collab that keeps on giving is with Butter London, their Pantone Color of the Year nail polish is always an instant hit.

How is the Pantone Color of the Year chosen?

The Color of the Year forecasting has been done since the Y2K when Cerulean was announced as a colour of tranquillity and calm in the face of big change. Since the year 2000, every year has had a Pantone Color of the Year.

Colour experts at the Pantone Institute study every aspect of design, art, fashion, and other aspects of society which could potentially be affected and also set a trend for the use of colour. Every little thing is taken into account when considering the colour for the next year.

They extensively study social media, print design, branding schemes, fashion trends, street fashion, contemporary art, street art, graffiti, video art, film, and product design. Analysts also take into consideration the state of international politics, the environmental situation and how artists respond to these with their creations and art.

After much consideration, the analysts at the Pantone Institute decide on a colour and announce it as the new Color of the Year in December. The announcement is growing in notoriety as journalists, artists, and designers are expecting the news every year. You have probably already seen the above video on social media.

How can designers use the Living Coral in their work?

The Pantone Institute is aware that designers in all fields will want to start using the Color of the Year straight away! That’s why when they announce the new colour in the first week of December, they also launch plenty of free and shoppable products to help designers use the colour in their projects. The most important information designers appreciate from Pantone is the colour number requirements they need to use for all different design software.

The Pantone colour number for Living Coral is 16-1546. The HEX number to use Living Coral in digital designs is FF6F61.



If you want to use Living Coral for other types of design, like on fabric, product printing, plastic 3D printing, etc, you can find tons of tools for designers in the Pantone website. From plastic colour chips to colour palettes that are family of Living Color and master swatches to use when creating physical mood boards and fashion design sketches.

Having these around in your place of work will also inspire new and wonderful creations with Living Coral and the colours that complement it, like turquoise and aquamarine.

It’s important to remember that the Color of the Year is meant to be used for the consumer. This means that the best use for Living Coral is to create products and designs that are not meant to be timeless. The Color of the Year is not meant to be used in a branding scheme unless it will change every year. If Living Coral doesn’t match a company’s branding, they can still use in the office’s interior decor or in gifts to clients.

Hairdressers and can offer the colour as an option for their clients. Makeup artists should have products in the Color of the Year for fashion shoots and editorials.

Disclaimer: The existence of the Color of the Year does not mean you are obliged to use it! Be inspired by it, let it shine on its own and if it’s just not the right time and place to use the colour, don’t use it.

How to incorporate Living Coral in your daily life?

Apart from all the available designer tools offered by the Pantone Institute, there are also a number of lifestyle products to inspire a designer’s daily life. Mugs for coffee or tea, plastic chip keychains, USB drives, journals, and swatch cards.

Use nail polish and makeup in Living Coral or incorporate it into your wardrobe. It will look great on a neck or headscarf, a pair of pumps or even as your new spring raincoat. Paint a section of the wall in your office, get some products from Society6 with the colour as the main attraction and decorate your workspace.


Over to you

Are you the kind of designer that loves to incorporate the Color of the Year into your work? Have clients asked you to use it in their projects? What do you think of this year’s Living Coral? Do you like it? Tell us in the comments.


By Orana Velarde