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2021 Pantone Colors

Updated: Jun 6, 2023

In this article, we examine the colors chosen by Pantone for 2021.

The Pantone Color Institute, a color trend forecasting and consulting firm based in Carlstadt, New Jersey, selects Color of the Year each December, as it has been since 2000.As we turn the page in 2020, this year's selection creates brand new inspiration. Not one, but two chosen hues for 2021: Ultimate Gray, which reflects the weathered pebbles found on the beach, is described by Pantone as "the epitome of protective and reliable elements that provide an eternally durable and solid foundation"; illumination yellow, a bright and cheerful yellow, creates a soft yellow shade that shines brightly and is full of solar energy.

Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute, said: “The combination of a lasting Ultimate Gray with a vibrant illuminating yellow conveys a message of positivity backed by fortitude.Practical and rock-solid yet warm and optimistic, this is a color combination that gives us flexibility and hope. We must feel courageous and uplifted; This is very important for the human spirit.

We've compiled specific recommendations with our design experts for their ideas for using these two hues throughout the home. Get ready for the real inspiration of the year ahead.

This color match improves your mood while maintaining a level of sophistication. Stories in yellow and gray will bring both happiness and calmness to any room, which will be important in 2021 as we continue to focus on making our homes our sanctuaries.

You can use these colors in various ways. Yellow is an energizing color and we recommend using it as a whole tone or accent color in play areas, areas where groups of people gather, such as the kitchen or living room.

Gray has long been used as an elegant neutralizing tool, you can modernize an office or family room by adding a soft yellow accent wall. You can get more inspiration by taking a look at our 2021 trend report, which focuses on color rhythm for the year ahead.

Gray is versatile and yellow can be the energizing tone to balance neutral gray. Consider this pairing in the kitchen by painting your upper and lower cabinets light gray and your kitchen island yellow.

Image Credit: Therapinterior

Yellow and gray can create a beautiful energy together in a nursery, creating a sense of both vitality and calmness. Do not hesitate to include this color combination even on the exterior of your home.

The idea of installing gray and yellow paintings for a fun, refreshing and inspiring space sounds good. T'Art Illumination and Concrete Edition paintings are great suggestions to liven up the space with this year's hues. Click to discover all the colors.

Monochrome schemes involve choosing a single color and then using colors that vary in lightness and saturation to create a clean, sophisticated look. With a similar color scheme, pick a color, then choose the shadows that appear as highlights on either side of that dominant color on the color wheel. The most suitable tones for yellow would be colors from the orange and green families. In complementary color schemes, choose a dominant color and then choose colors directly from the color wheel to create contrast. The two colors will intensify each other and create a lively feeling.

Create Pop Highlights Light gray is always a great alternative to white for those who want to create a soft and calm environment. It has a calming effect and is a great backdrop that works with most aesthetic aspects. A sharp yellow is energizing and eye-catching, and is best when applied graphically through art and style, such as a gorgeous modern print or colorful patterned pillows. Cushion accents add extra dimension to a space.

B&B italia sofa
Image Credit: B&B Italia

One of the most important features of light gray is that it can be applied in almost all styles and types of spaces. Like white, it is a timeless and timeless color. You can switch between furniture, textiles, accessories and artwork to completely refresh a room without having to repaint it. Bright yellow should be used minimally and as an accent, as it can be too strong and overwhelming in wide ranges. Gray is universal. It pairs seamlessly with every color in the rainbow and looks balanced. Yellow is a little trickier and needs a calmer tone to neutralize, earth tones like rust or eggplant.

Create Contrast

Pale colors combined with ultimate gray can add just the right amount of warmth and interest to a space.

a spacious living room with high ceilings
Image Credit: Unknown

A palette with gray tones is an element to keep in mind in all spaces. Combine a gray wall with a textured gray sofa or armchair to create a quiet accent wall in a neutral room.

A gray wall and black and gray furniture mixed with gold leaf or brass in illuminating yellow tones can create an unusual and bold mix of the two tones. “Dark blue mixed with soft gray is a classic masculine palette, while softer yellows with white create an ethereal feel.

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