By: Ashleigh VanHouten

Unless you’ve been living under a (non-pastel colored) rock, you know that Pantone managed to make both a bold and somehow still soft statement with their choice for 2016 Color of the Year: for the first time ever, they chose two, a dusty pink called Rose Quartz and and a cool blue called Serenity. While some may see these soothing colors and immediately think of nursery room décor, interestingly Pantone chose these colors in response to “societal movements toward gender equality and fluidity…a generation that has less concern about being typecast or judged and an open exchange of digital information that has opened our eyes to different approaches to color usage.” As with every aspect of gender equality, I don’t think we’re quite there yet – I’ve heard lots of comments about the female/male dynamic of these two colors, especially when put together — but I do agree that we’re increasingly finding new ways to express our style through color and design.

The colors are meant to “reflect connection and wellness as well as a soothing sense of order and peace,” says Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director for the Pantone Color Institute, and they certainly do have a calming effect, without being drab or boring. I wouldn’t call these neutral tones, although they do go well with a range of complementary hues. As with Marsala, Pantone’s color of the year for 2015, this choice will undoubtedly be polarizing for some—but it’s definitely getting everyone talking and thinking about color, which I think is ultimately the point. There’s no doubt that pastel tones have been rising in popularity for a few years now, and it looks like Rose Quartz and Serenity will inspire some truly modern and fresh designs in the coming year.

And speaking of refusing to be typecast: Chella Textiles, while well known for its outdoor luxury performance textiles, actually specifies 60 percent of its fabrics for indoor applications—AND happens to have some pretty amazing patterns in Pantone’s new colors:

Gatsby from Chella Textiles.

Gatsby from Chella Textiles.

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Spiral Matelasse by Chella Textiles

Satin Ribbon Stripe by Chella Textiles.

Satin Ribbon Stripe by Chella Textiles.

Satin Ribbon Stripe by Chella Textiles

Satin Ribbon Stripe by Chella Textiles

DiMedici by Chella Textiles.

DiMedici by Chella Textiles.

What do you think of the new colors for 2016? Let us know in the comments! And if you have any questions on these gorgeous Chella patterns, please get in touch.