Built to Last…2023 Color of the Year

It’s that time of the year when the “Color of the Year” is announced.  Don’t know how they decide that.  Maybe it’s like throwing a dart on a huge color wheel.  Every paint manufacturer has their yearly color, however the grand daddy of them all is Pantone.  This year it’s “Viva Magenta”.  Viva Magenta is a bold, cool red hue meant to promote optimism and joy. See how to use it around a home.

 First, a little about the featured color and why it was chosen. Viva Magenta is meant to play up the connection between natural and virtual worlds and to find optimism and joy within that tension. “As virtual worlds become a more prominent part of our daily lives, we look to draw inspiration from nature and what is real,” says Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of Pantone Color Institute. “Viva Magenta descends from the red family and is inspired by the red of cochineal, one of the most precious dyes belonging to the natural dye family, as well as one of the strongest and brightest the world has known. Rooted in the primordial, Viva Magenta reconnects us to original matter. Invoking the forces of nature, it galvanizes our spirit, helping us to build our inner strength.”

It’s important to note that Pantone’s Color of the Year selection isn’t intended exclusively for home design. Rather, the chosen color takes inspiration from — and has influence on — all areas of design, including fashion, art, technology and advertising, as well as interior design and decor.

Viva Magenta is a dynamic hue that can easily dominate in a room. So, if you’re a little wary of going too bold, it’s best to stick to small doses.


 Dulux Paint

In my opinion, one of the best ways to use this hue is as a front door accent. It brings such a warm, welcoming vibe. This pink-toned red is a fresh and modern take on classic front door red.

An added bonus when decorating with visually assertive hues is that you don’t need to add many decorative gewgaws and knickknacks. The color provides the drama and spice.

If you want to go big with Viva Magenta but with less of a commitment than cabinetry, consider painting accent walls in the color. That way it’s easy to repaint if you grow tired of it in the future. Again, consider keeping other elements as neutral as possible to cut down on the visual busyness.

Viva Magenta and colors like it can work outside too. When possible, and when it works with the architecture and style of the home, magenta is an unexpected but striking choice. It’s an especially lovely contrast with the natural greens in the landscape.

Your turn: What do you think of Pantone’s choice of Viva Magenta for its Color of the Year 2023?

David Wulff, AIA is a retired architect living in Lake Lure

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