The Pantone Color of the year is selected at the end of every year to reflect what they believe will become a major design trend, across all design platforms, in the coming year. Whether or not their selection in based on the Zeitgeist, or creates it, when Pantone has something to say, designers usually listen.

And this year, the honor goes to the color Radiant Orchid. This shade’s connotations of royalty, creativity, rebelliousness, femininity and just a bit of mystery and magic make it the perfect shade to be featured as 2014’s Pantone Color of the Year.

The color seems poised to be highly featured in both fashion and interior design, as one of its qualities is considered to be its ability to flatter and inspire, as can be seen above on some of the past century’s musical legends as well as a brightening and adding warm accents to add to any room.

House Beautiful

House Beautiful Magazine was ahead of the curve with this cover of their July/August 2013 issue.

Ultimately, the color lies somewhere between the darker, royal purples and the pinker, brighter end of the purple spectrum, closer to what some might call a fuchsia. While many may consider this to be an especially feminine color, in particular when you consider its history associated with designer gowns and wedding dresses, this leaves out the myriad of other possibilities for this eye-pleasing shade. Like this familiar placement:


Does this mean we can start calling dollars orchidbacks?

Or wrapped around these famous figures:

Walk Around Like You're Bigger Than Prince

Prince (image via Complex) and Jimi Hendrix (image via okayplayer) love them some deep purples.

Purple has been a purpular color since the ancient times — the color goes back to the ancient Romans, who used this color as a marker of their social status, with the best dyes going only to the richest citizens:

Tyrian Purple

This swatch, dyed with Tyrian purple ink, just about matches this modern-day Color of the Year.

Graphic designers ahead of the curve

But radiant orchid, in all of its exoticism, is not reserved solely for eye-catching fashion and trendy living rooms, or even to mix up the color of currency. It can also be featured in the designs that you work with to add a temporal and attention-grabbing element to your works. We here at 99designs even look at it through our support desk interface:


The flowery color choice doesn’t stop there. Our 99designers are already using this color in their work. Here are some of their works that have so presciently used this radiant shade:


Roots Natural Foods by pecas


T-shirt design for The Astronaut Sex Pants by pedrorsfernandes


App design for Anagram Hero by *Elan


Beaches Frozen Yogurt by struggle4ward


Smart Spot Media by Gideon6k3


Carelulu logo by Tatiana_creola77


Havana Tourism Poster by Suxero

Join in the fun

Want to use this color in your designs? Here are the color codes:

  • Pantone: 18-3224
  • CMYK: C-19, M-70, Y-0, K-0
  • RGB: R-200, G-107, B-168
  • HTML: B163A3

It is sometimes easy to forget that color can be one of the easiest, and most effective, ways of making your design really stand out. And whether you’re using orchid as an accent next to a green, brown or blue, or as the head honcho of the design, it can really make a splash.

Happy 2014: Year of Radiant Orchid!

Want to stay up to date? Check out 2016’s Pantone Color of the Year!