Color Me Radiant Orchid
February 14 2014

Color Me Radiant Orchid

New York-Fashion Week

The Pantone company celebrated the Color of the Year and its very first sportswear line on the ice at The Standard, High Line. Not surprisingly, the color authority put on a colorful affair. Guests gathered at the Pantone pop-up shop across the street at Scoop and then warmed themselves up with hot toddies and a few laps around the rink. For those who aren't familiar with the all-powerful Pantone, here's a little background.

In the world of design, the Pantone Book is quite literally a bible – holy, sacred and cherished. At Standard HQ it is kept in a locked drawer and emblazoned with a giant sticker that reads, "this book CANNOT leave this office." What exactly is so valuable? 14,000 swatches of color, all numbered and acknowledged as the definitive metric. Our red, PMS 485, is for The Standard brand a fixed point to keep our graphics consistent. Or if a fashion designer, say, sees a flower with a particular shade of violet, he or she can match it to its closest Pantone color and away they go.

Color of the Year
Speaking of violet, Pantone also devises the "Color of the Year". While it remains unproven that there is a secret fashion council who gathers in a warehouse on the outskirts of Milan and decides just exactly how short your skirt will be, there really is a panel of color experts who spend nearly a year examining everything from the stock market to street art to come up with this ...

The color, heavily guarded until it is announced in December at Art Basel Miami Beach is meant as both commentary on the mood of the country, as well as retail trendsetter. "Every year retailers will blind-order their merchandise, not knowing the actual color, just knowing it will sell," Ricardo Giroudi, the CEO of Pantone Sportswear, told us. "It's that powerful."

While Pantone is a well known niche brand, it's a different story when it comes to general consumer awareness. "It's a tricky one because not many people know about Pantone. We're in the process of educating the public and fashion is the perfect platform," Ricardo explains. The new line takes staples of every man’s wardrobe – tees, tanks, pants, shorts, sweaters – and focuses not only on color, but graphics as well. You can check out the SS2014 collection at Scoop on Washington Street for the next few weeks and will popping up in cities across the globe.