New Beginnings?

Can Pantone's Vibrant Green Make 2017 Less Terrible?

The color of the year is all about turning over a new leaf.

By Sarah Rufca Nielsen December 12, 2016

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Hermès Women's Granny Green Clemence Birkin 35, $13,975 at

Image: Polyvore

In 2016, for the first time Pantone selected not one but two colors of the year, an ethereal pink (Rose Quartz) and blue (Serenity). They were supposed to express "the need for harmony in a chaotic world," according to Leatrice Eiseman, the executive director of the Pantone Color Institute. Looking back at the year in review, it seems more fitting to declare that in such a divided country, even the color of the year couldn't unify us. 

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A look from the Kenzo Spring/Summer 2017 collection.

Image: Kenzo

For 2017, Pantone is giving it another shot, selecting a vibrant green with a touch of lime called Greenery (also known as Pantone 15-0343) as the color of the year. According to a press release, it was chosen based on existing trends, sighting the color on the runways of Kenzo, Michael Kors, Zac Posen and Cynthia Rowley as well as its emergence in everyday life in things like matcha, avocado toast, and the growing preference for indoor-outdoor living. 

"Greenery bursts forth in 2017 to provide us with the hope we collectively yearn for amid a complex social and political landscape. Satisfying our growing desire to rejuvenaterevitalize and unite, Greenery symbolizes the reconnection we seek with nature, one another and a larger purpose,” says Eiseman in a statement. It's compared to the feeling on the first day of spring, "when nature’s greens revive, restore and renew."

It's perhaps of interest to note that this particular shade was also a hit during the turbulent years of the 1960s and 1970s—remember your grandma's avocado fridge?—so it seems like there's some kind of psychic connection between bright colors and escapism. 

The color itself certainly has a bold, fresh energy about it. And studies have shown that color does have an effect on mood, from reds making us hungry to calming blues. So maybe surrounding ourselves with something sunny and bright can rally our collective spirits, inspire us to commune with nature and encourage us to live and express ourselves boldly. Here's hoping, at least.

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