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2020 Color Trends: Bold Blues and Pretty Pastels 

You may have heard that Pantone’s color of the year for 2020 is “Classic Blue” (or PANTONE 19-4052 if you want to get specific) but what does that mean for interior design and home trends?

Color Trends

Image Credit: Pantone

Pantone says Classic Blue is “instilling calm, confidence, and connection, this enduring blue hue highlights our desire for a dependable and stable foundation on which to build as we cross the threshold into a new era.”

This is a serious departure from last year’s bright, sunny, tropical “Living Coral” although Pantone’s sentiment with it was similar. “Living Coral embraces us with warmth and nourishment to provide comfort and buoyancy in our continually shifting environment.” 

Living Coral was the 2019 Color of the Year. Image credit: Pantone

In other words – Pantone asserts that color can help us adapt to change, or at least stay resilient through it. Much like a familiar smell, certain colors can transport us in time. Consider the olive green of the 70’s, mint blue of the 60’s or cherry red of the 50’s. Colors truly can set the tone for an era. So as we go into this new year and decade, here are some of the color trends industry experts anticipate will define it. 

Classic Blue 

There’s no way around the fact that we’ll be seeing this color across design industries. And we’ve seen it done very successfully in many clients’ homes. 

This client’s kitchen island and pantry door were painted the same bold blue. Throughout the open floorplan house this color is used as an accent to tie it all together and keep your eye moving through the space. 

Color Trends - Blue

Classic Blue dining chairs are the perfect pop of color at this outdoor dining area. 

Color Trends - Blue

This screened in porch pulls in Classic Blue with the rug and accent pillows. Items that can easily be changed out as taste and trends change. 

Saturated Solids

Pantone doesn’t just set the color of the year, they also release a “forecast” of other colors that they believe will be popular, although their predictions in this are more pointed at the fashion industry. Like Classic Blue, the rest of their palette includes highly saturated, familiar colors that abandon the grays and millennial pinks of the past decade. 

color trends - saturated

For the world of home decor and interior design, some experts suggest we’ll be seeing bold colors such as these in monochromatic palettes. 

color trends saturated

In this client’s study, a deep hunter green was used for the walls, trim, millwork, curtains, upholstery and artwork, making a major impact in a small space. 

color trends saturated 3

This client took Royal Blue to a new level in their “Cigar Room” by using it on the walls, curtains, fireplace surround, and accent pillows. 

New Neutrals

Benjamin Moore releases its own annual paint color of the year as well as a complementary palette, and it is decidedly more subdued than the 2020 Pantone color trends. These colors at first glance seem similar to palettes we’ve seen over the past ten years, but there are important updates. Yellow, blue, pink, green and even the white all skew toward pastel, with some more bold (but not bright) standouts such as “Cushing Green” and “Blue Danube” to offset their softness.  

color trends - new neutrals

Image credit: Benjamin Moore

color trends

The pastels in this client’s powder room wallpaper would make the Benjamin Moore designers very proud. We love how these colors look alongside matte brass fixtures, which are having a very serious moment of their own. 

These colors also lend themselves to relaxing spaces that invite nature in like this client’s dreamy screened in porch. 

Tie it Together

It’s important to remember that it’s not an either/or for these palettes. Regardless of trends, forecasts and designer insights – the best colors for your home are the ones you love and want to live with. 

This dining room takes the best of the Classic Blue saturation and more neutral pastel palette and pulls it all together in one beautiful, timeless space that is perfectly their style.

The room is dramatic, thanks to a balanced combination of color, light, and texture.  

So whether you prefer bold and bright or light and airy, you’re in luck. 2020 is giving us a wealth of options to design, express and experience color.