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Forget shades of gray - the colours of 2013 are bold and bright


For more than two millennia, colour has been a part of the human experience. In the home of the wealthy rich tones in reds and blues adorned the walls yet among the servant class white wash to better reflect scant natural light dominated.

Well, the times they are a-changing and so a new slate of hues reflect the modern age. However, many harken back to the days of old, with an updated twist.

For 2013, colour gurus are leading the charge with a brigade of mood-changing palettes. Here’s a sample of what to expect from the pros in the field.

At Benjamin Moore lemon sorbet has the lofty title of 2013’s colour of the year. Described as “uplifting without being overpowering” by colour expert Leigh-Ann Allaire Perrault, it's a harmonizing shade that works well with other trendy pastels in the mint, coral, pink, blue, and vanilla families. It's a sign that yellow is no longer willing to sit quietly in the background and is now taking it's rightful place front and centre. Yellow even works well when paired with purple nowadays.

Red continues to be a staple colour in design, says Perrault. “Red is warm and attention-grabbing.". 

For 2013 reds are toned down and bold, depending on your personality. Whether bright red's nod to its ancestral roots or  paired with colours from the warm side of the colour wheel — think red with hot pink — it's a versatile hue.

Green is nature’s neutral. Even if bold, other colours will go with green. Similarly, all shades of blue will remain popular. For accent colours, pink, orange and purple are hot and bronzy oranges and peachy-coral orange are coming into play. 

According to colour expert and executive director of the Pantone Color Institute, Leatrice Eiseman, “earthy textures lay a new foundation for palettes of blues and greens."

From the quirky and whimsical colour combinations of pumpkin and bright blue with goldenrod, lime, and violet to mixing together sandy brown, vibrant tangerine, peacock blue, and fiery pink, "the inspiration comes from bright tribal tones," adds Eiseman. 

And preppy primary colours and bright white become more modern when used with shades of gray — or black.

Eiseman's favourite palette for next year combines quiet moss green, cobblestone gray and shitake brown with vibrant fuchsia.

Stay on trend and dabble or delve into the colours of the year. (RMM)