In The Devil Wears Prada, there is a classic monologue in which the terrible Miranda Priestly ( Maryl Streep) editor of the fashion magazine Runway, explains to a naive and unsuspecting Andy Sachs (Anne Hathaway) that the cerulean sweater she is wearing is not a simple blue garment chosen outside the logic of fashion but the result of a selection process orchestrated with awareness by people who work in fashion.
The film based on the 2003 novel of the same name was released in 2006 and – with this one scene that has become a cult classic – explains how and the extent to which the choice of a color can influence the trends of even the most inattentive wardrobe. It is no coincidence that 'cerulean' was the first Color of the Year by Pantone – the US institute that created a cataloging system in the 1960s, over time becoming the international reference for colors – described in 2000 as destined to influence fashion for the following year.
Selected by the Pantone Color Institute, which has gathered together a group of color experts since 1986, the Color of the Year has now become a veritable media event of intrigue that keeps designers and enthusiasts with baited breath and literally sets the tone for the collections we will see parading on the catwalks, the garments displayed in the store windows and later hanging in our wardrobes. It’s the color we will also find in the new trends in make-up and home wallpaper.
This year, it was Magenta. 18-1750 Viva Magenta as it is called, is a particular type of crimson red. It is not a shade that is part of the natural optical spectrum and was discovered by chance in France in Lyon by François-Emmanuel Verguin, during some color experiments. The new color was initially patented as fuchsine and acquired its current name in homage to the city in Lombardy where, in 1859, the battles of the second war of Italian independence were won by the Franco-Piedmontese with the shedding of much blood.
Today, the Pantone Color Institute has chosen this color to drive the upcoming trends. “An unconventional shade for an unconventional time,” is the motivation of the color experts. “It is assertive, but not aggressive, a carmine red that does not boldly dominate but instead takes a 'fist in a velvet glove' approach. “Audacious, witty and inclusive of all, [it] welcomes anyone and everyone with the same rebellious spirit.”
In short, the perfect color to interpret the world post-pandemic and the ongoing environmental and geopolitical crises; a feeling of redemption and hope for the future but also the logic of inclusiveness and recognition of diversity. Unusual and transversal because it goes well with both cold and warm tones, it has already made an appearance last season in the collections of certain forward-looking designers.
Just the other day, Kate Middleton wore a magenta trouser suit on her trip to Boston. More than just high fashion. The 2023 Pantone trend has already caught the eye of technology and furniture brands including Motorola and Spoonflower, who have already made known their intention to go with this color for new products.
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