Pantone’s 2020 Color of the Year, Classic Blue, creates a timeless and elegant feel while providing calmness, confidence and connection in your space.

Featured photo courtesy of Amy Miller Weinstein

What’s lighter than navy and more muted than cobalt?

Classic Blue — aka Pantone’s new Color of the Year 2020.

The Pantone Color Institute has provided color reports and forecasts since 1962 (that year was painted Cerulean Blue). From its palate curation, interior designers, fashion designers, beauty companies — basically any business having to do with color — take their cue for products for the following year; in this case, ushering in a new decade.

This year, Pantone’s Executive Director Leatrice Eiseman describes its color as a “dependable and stable foundation to move forward to a new era. It brings calmness, confidence and connection. It is a timeless and enduring hue, elegant in its simplicity.

“We are living in a time that requires trust and faith,” Eiseman continues. “It is this kind of constancy and confidence that is expressed by Pantone Classic Blue, a solid and dependable blue hue we can always rely on.”

Though the color may seem staid, even ubiquitous, Pantone packs a punch of emotion in its dissection of Classic Blue’s range — and the color unites classic design genres from chinoiserie to Americana, says Architectural Digest. From blue-and-white china to lustrous taffeta and velvet to shimmering pool tiles, Pantone predicts we’ll be seeing traditional Classic Blue in new twists.

Shiny blue lacquer coating a bathroom vanity is picked up by custom-colored cement tiles, designed by Elizabeth Fields PHOTO BY BETH SINGER/COURTESY OF ELIZABETH FIELDS
A mix of custom-colored tiles line the indoor pool of Elizabeth Fields’ client. PHOTO BY ALEX EISENBERG

Meaning, it’s all in the details.

Amy Miller Weinstein, owner of AMW Design Studio in Birmingham, agrees. “I like to combine compatible mixes from a variety of styles to create homes that are tailored, unique and timeless,” Weinstein says. In the den of a local client, Weinstein utilizes a vibrant studded blue sectional for a blast of color and as a neutral against a patterned blue wall and textural carpet at the same time.

In another client’s den, Weinstein uses a Classic Blue sofa as an emotional anchor opposite a pair of boldly striped armchairs.

“It’s about the ‘layering’ and selecting finishes that have varying degrees of color saturation, so there is depth and contrast. The dark blue velvet sectional sofa is dramatic against the softer soft blue flannel wallcovering. Tweedy pillows with blue undertones add wonderful texture.

A den by Amy Miller Weinstein uses Classic Blue as a neutral across from bold-striped chairs. PHOTO BY BETH SINGER/COURTESY OF AMY MILLER WEINSTEIN
A fabric sample by Pollack Fabrics in Venetian Canal from Tennant & Associates in Troy PHOTO BY ELIZABETH FIELDS

Designer Elizabeth Fields, owner of Elizabeth Fields Design in Franklin, has a similar approach for clients in that she creates an easy mix of comfort, color, quality and function — she likes to make stylish, welcoming spaces. To that end, Classic Blue is a go-to.

“Classic Blue is a foundational color in many of my projects,” Fields says. “Everyone loves blue and it works in every room.”

For example, for a local client’s bath, Fields worked with Perspectives Custom Cabinetry in Troy to create a blue-lacquered vanity with custom-colored cement tile flooring from Ciot, also in Troy.

For another client’s indoor pool, Fields surrounded the top third of the entire room and trimmed the pool deck with custom-colored Bisazza glass mosaic tile from Ciot.

“We like to weave a thematic color throughout a project by applying it to different materials like lacquered cabinetry, tile, fabrics and artwork,” Fields says. An upholstery with a pop of blue woven through by Pollack Associates from Tennant & Associates in Troy and a collection of geometric pillows by Marimekko are favorites.

“And don’t forget,” Fields says, “blue suits up beautifully for a night on the town.”