Knitters love color; we wouldn’t be knitters if the sight of a new shade or the perfect hue for that project didn’t thrill us. And, of course, if you dye your own yarn, color combinations take on a new level of fascination.

Hand knitting tends to be more timeless and classic than department-store fashion, but we’re modern, savvy people. Some projects, like an heirloom colorwork sweater, are perfect in shades of cream, blue, navy and crimson, but others (that hat for your 13-year old, a one-skein shawl or a perfect sweater you saw in a catalog and want to shape to your body) are going to be in of-the-moment colors.

The biggest name in color is Pantone, whose picks for the seasons are a big deal in all of fashion. If you don’t know them already, you’ll find yourself nodding as you look at the colors they picked for Fall 2013 and tally it with the selections you saw in every store.

illustration by pantone

illustration by pantone

From the Pantone website: For more than 20 years, Pantone, the global authority on color, has surveyed the designers of New York Fashion Week and beyond to bring you the season’s most important color trends.

This actually addresses a question of mine, whether the fashion designers follow Pantone or the other way round. It’s kind of a collaboration, but I’m sure that Pantone makes their determinations from many different trend forecasters, and that when designers see the colors, they incorporate them into their work…

The big news this past week was Pantone’s top color pick for 2014: Radiant Orchid.


A fun, upbeat color, with a panoply of backup colors including brights, pastels and neutrals.


Elle Decor has an interior design take on the colors.

From Creative Review, more versions of Radiant Orchid. I really like some of the darker hues.

pantone photo

pantone photo

Here’s a lineup of last spring and fall’s colors (spring on the left).


Other fashion trend sites have their own takes on the upcoming trends:

Color Solutions International has some collections for the year based on the fashion shows.



And Swatch Loft put together this collage for the new season:


For anyone who loves color, I highly recommend checking out Design Seeds. Jessica Coluca is a design consultant who provides free daily inspiration with her color palettes; I always perk up when I see these in my inbox.

Here are some of my favorite Design Seeds picks for the upcoming seasons:











Experimenting with color is one of the joys of knitting. Have a fun, colorful year!


January 10, 2014 by Knitcircus

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