Friday, November 13, 2009

Color of the Season

The season is the reason ... 'tis the season ... given the date you'd probably think I was talking about the 2009 holiday season, but in terms of fashion that's a distant memory. Nope, I'm referring to the Spring/Summer 2010 colors, and even then I'm late on board. Color is serious business!

There are several sources for season color forecasts. Pantone is perhaps the most widely recognized, but after a quick Google search I found a website, Fashion Trend Setter, that summarized the PANTONE Colors and also several other color forecasting fashion sites such as Interfilière and Copenhagen International Fashion Fair (CIFF).

On the ten compiled images below, I compare the 10 PANTONE Colors with the closest matching colors from those other two forecasts. The large squares on the left are the PANTONE Colors, the rectangles are CIFF colors, and the small squares are from Interfilière. What amazed me was, although each company forecasts a different number of colors - sometimes several palates of color, was that I could find very similar colors in each. The take-away being that there does truly seem to be international consensus, at least, about the tones and hues of color that will be important in design.

Taking these colors, I wanted to write a little about where we can find these colors among the raw materials used in jewelry design. In specific, glass rods for lampworking and semi-precious gemstones, since those are the sources of color I use most. So selfish!

Glass rods, generally being more affordable than stones, were more familiar to me so I knew where to look for specific colors. The glass rods shown in the images come from a variety of companies in different coefficients of expansion (COE). Moretti, Effetre, Lauscha, and CiM are COE 104, Bullseye is COE 90, and Glass Alchemy is COE 32-33. These images come from a variety of websites that sell glass including Frantz Art Glass, Lauscha Lady, Glass Alchemy, and Bullseye. I have personally purchased rods from all of these sources except Bullseye, which I purchase at my local glass store, J Ring Glass Studio.

Finding matching colors in semi-precious gemstones was a little trickier, primarily because stones are never one single color and some vary more than others. I started by looking at websites with good examples of stones, Fire Mountain Gems, and Holygemstone. I then used Google Images to see how much color variation existed for any given stone. If the color in a stone is relatively consistent, I give you the link for the Google Images result.

A semi-precious gemstone with a similar color is Kambaba Jasper. Holygemstone has some Ocean Jasper this color.

Holygemstone has some River Jasper this color. Another semi-precious gemstone with a similar color is Bamboo Jasper or some examples of Ocean Jasper.

Holygemstone has some Poppy Jasper this color.

Fire Mountain Gems has a great selection of Calcite this color. Holygemstone has some Picture Jasper this color.

Citrine often has this color.

Google Images shows a great variety of Pink Coral, which is a great match for this color.

Again, you can see from Google Images that Red Coral, though coming in a variety of hues, often comes in strands this color.

Although Amethyst comes is a wide range of hues, you can often find them with this color. Sugilite, an absolutely stunning semi-precious gemstone, also frequently comes in this color.

I think that the best match for this color is Lapis Lazuli. If you're finding strands that are too dark, try looking for Denim Lapis.

This is another stone with a lot of color variation. Some is a bright blue, but you can find a lot of true color Turquoise, too.

So, if you haven't gotten a start using the new colors yet, and if you actually managed to wade your way through the post, I hope this gives you some good places to start!