Color Trends for 2010

New color trends presented recently by Sherwin Williams reaquaints designers with the past for inspiration in the near future.


Rich, earthy colors associated with African, Aboriginal, and Native American cultures.  Inspiration comes from members of Ethiopian tribes who paint their bodies with green and red pigments sourced from volcanic ash, as well as weeds, grasses, and shells. The deep teal and ash gray of African wildlife and landscapes, as well as the bright designs of the locals’ textiles and beads, also serves a launching point for new designs.


Lines are well-tailored and clear, translucent materials that reveal shape and structure. This is a nod to the Bauhaus style of architecture, with its absence of ornamentation and its harmony between form and function. A current example of this trend is Guggenheim Museum.


Elements are weathered and the design is enhance  by organic aging. An example is the Rough Luxe Hotel in the United Kingdom, where the original layers of peeling paint and ancient wallpaper are still visible on the walls. This “less-than-perfect aesthetic” also includes the use of distressed leather, vintage tapestries, found objects, and patina.


Bright, energized floral colors that evoke optimism and exuberance.  “Flower power” of 1960s vintage, with a hippie spirit makes a return. Lemonade yellow, crisp green, and vivacious violet are among the colors that play into this theme.  These vibrant colors comes partly as a response to the challenging times and a need for something positive to balance out the stress many are currently facing.

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