Pantone’s 2022 Colour of the Year is periwinkle

For the first time, the colour experts have created a brand new hue for the annual announcement – and it’s a lilacy blue that speaks to the future of fashion as well as the metaverse

Pantone’s Colour of the Year has been running since 1999, and over the years we’ve seen a vast array of shades – including Living Coral, Rose Quartz and Serenity, Radiant Orchid and, for some reason, grey and yellow for 2021.

This year, the organisation has announced Very Peri as its prediction for the year ahead – describing it as “a dynamic periwinkle blue hue with a vivifying violet red undertone”.

“Blending the faithfulness and constancy of blue with the energy and excitement of red, this happiest and warmest of all the blue hues introduces an empowering mix of newness,” says Pantone in a press release. The company goes on to explain that the colour is chosen as a reflection of our changing physical and digital lives, trends in gaming, and the popularity of the nascent metaverse.

According to Leatrice Eiseman, executive director at the Pantone Color Institute, Very Peri has “a spritely, joyous attitude and dynamic presence that encourages courageous creativity and imaginative expression” – which all sounds like things we’ll need to get through 2022.

As part of its announcement, Pantone has teamed up with Microsoft to create a series of Teams backgrounds, wallpapers, and PowerPoint templates imbued with shades of periwinkle, and are hosting an immersive Very Peri experience at Artechouse in New York. Digital artist Polygon1993 has also created a set of periwinkle-tinted pieces.

While some of Pantone’s previous choices have felt a little out of step – 2015’s Marsala comes to mind in particular – periwinkle does feel strangely timely. There’s a certain techy-ness to it that seems fitting, as well as the feeling that it wouldn’t be out of place in Fortnite or on a social media campaign. Here’s to a blue and violet-tinted 2022.