In this section, you will find articles about the use of color within various industries. Click on the RSS icon to the subscribe to our Color Articles feed in your newsreader.
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Well-made sunglasses are much more than just a fashion accessory. They can also be a valuable source of protection for your eyes in a variety of weather and light conditions. Whether you follow the newest trends or prefer tried and true classics, sunglasses can complement or update your wardrobe; disguise tired, bloodshot eyes; add a touch of mystery to your appearance, and build self-confidence into your performance. Each year, companies such as Ray-Ban, Oakley, Armani, and Maui Jim introduce their newest lines, designed for both work and play, and for 2014, once again there are some exciting trends to watch.
Mirrored sunglasses were first introduced in the '80s and then reintroduced a few years ago. One reason they will continue to be extremely popular is the fact that they photograph extremely well. With cell phones and cameras everywhere, wearers can trust that these sunglasses will always show them at their best. While mirrored sunglasses come in a variety of colors, for 2014, vibrant blue seems to be the new favorite. There is just something energizing, attention-drawing, and slightly edgy about blue reflective lenses. Ray-Ban’s Wayfarers are an example of this popular new stand-out color that is prized by the younger generation. Other popular mirrored lenses include metallic gold and pink, but green, yellow and dark or black are also available in almost every style and shape.
Dark gray, smoke, or gray-green lenses will continue to be the most popular choice for functionality this year. They are also the shade most recommended by eye doctors because they are color-neutral and cut overall brightness without causing color distortion. Not only do they reduce glare, but they also provide longer wearing comfort and keep UV levels down in the safe zone. This color has been the choice of the military for over 45 years and with obvious good reason. Because they transmit all colors without changing their value, these sun glasses are ideal for bright days and activities such as water sports.
One of the wonders of springtime is the abundance of colorful displays put on by a waking world. For centuries, it has seemed more than fitting to join the celebration of new life with a wide variety of Easter candy colors. Well before Christianity staked claim to this special time of year, the ancients had their own way of celebrating rebirth, and the delicacy of choice was the egg.
Hindus, Phoenicians, Persians, and Egyptians honored the egg and made the process of decorating it into a regular art form. Earliest efforts included dyes from roots, bark, leaves, tea, coffee, fruits, edible flowers, and even vegetables. To make the patterns more intricate, the eggs were wrapped in ferns before being immersed in dyes.
The Ukrainians created bold solid-red eggs that reminded them of the shed blood of Christ on the cross. Egg-rolling contests symbolized the rolling away of the stone that covered the entrance to Jesus’ tomb. The Macedonians became skilled at creating etchings. The 57 famous Russian Fabergé eggs were never meant for snacking! Delicately crafted of gold, silver and jewels, they exist in private and museum collections today.
Since time immemorial, colors have reinforced our emotions, disposition and decisions. Dark clouds on a workday prod us to bring raincoats or umbrellas to the office. Vibrant flowers in springtime bring about a delightful ambiance. Universal traffic lights signal pedestrians to stop or cross the lane.
This concept of color reinforcement should be thought through when creating a PowerPoint presentation. To make the visual material more effective, designers or speakers should ponder if their choice of colors enhances the viewer’s concentration, learning and knowledge retention.
To help you reflect on the possible impact of selected hues, here are color facts worth noting:
Colors create a significant impression
Among the five senses, sight is the most responsive to marketing tools. The eyes see and examine the product’s qualities, most especially the color.
Like fashion color trends, interior design changes are generally a reflection of our reactions to the throbbing of the world around us. In some cases, we embrace the positive by surrounding ourselves with celebratory, bright shades. When we feel a bit stressed or overwhelmed, we may retreat to softer, quieter, calming spaces. Major paint producers such as Benjamin Moore, Behr, and Sherwin Williams track our purchases and then identify emerging trends from that data. For 2014, living room wall color ideas are leaning towards “relaxed luxury” or a more laid-back traditional approach.
Gray is firmly entrenched as the new black and favorite neutral. However, new depth and richness of color allow it to be both elegant and even slightly mysterious. Sherwin Williams offers a full-bodied Library Pewter, dark Sealskin, and softer Anew Gray for stunning living room backdrops. Wool Skein is an interesting combination “greige.” Benjamin Moore also has Wickham Gray and Earl Gray to bring to the table, but this company has gone a step further with its own Neutral Palette, a collection of 23 softer shades that will work together for the decorator who is transitioning from room to room.
Today’s newest neutrals are grays with pastel tints in blues, greens, pinks, or lavenders added. Before trying one of these, you’ll want to determine whether your project calls for warm or cool colors. Warm colors generally suit elegant or traditional settings, while cool colors speak to modernist, playful, or futuristic leanings. Generally, once that decision is made, you’ll want to carry it out through most of the house, at least in adjoining hallways and rooms. Pastel grays are on the cooler side of the spectrum.
This year's color trends in jewelry and gemstones offer wonderful opportunities for experimentation for jewelry makers everywhere. From larger and more colorful Akoya cultured pearls to multi-colored iridescent Tahitian pearls and gray-black to jet black cultured pearls, you'll have more latitude than ever to create stunning jewelry designs. This year's hues will let you design pieces that are as much a study in contrasts as the colors in the Pantone spring 2014 palette. Or, if you'd like to get a jump on the shades that will be hot this fall, Pantone's autumn picks will give you even more to work with in putting together earrings, necklaces, pendants and bracelets that will make your wardrobe pop.
Spring, 2014 Color Inspiration
If you're inclined to combine your pastel gems with bolder colored stones to create your jewelry masterpieces this season — ala the spring palette — or you decide to pair jewelry made entirely from bright-colored stones with more subdued apparel colors, or vice versa, this season's palette, which combines neutral and pastel shades with bold, vivid hues, will help you create exciting designs that provide dramatic accents for your spring wardrobe and beyond.