Purple Reigns as Pantone Colour of the Year 2018 – Here's How to Use It

Mood board featuring Metropolitan Field Tile in Heath (centre) | Courtesy of Original Style
Picture of Charlotte Luxford
Architecture & Design Editor
Updated: 21 December 2017
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In the midst of global chaos and disruption, the Pantone Color Institute has announced Ultra Violet as its Colour of the Year 2018, which was chosen for its associations with positivity, spirituality and counterculture. Here’s how to introduce this bold hue into your home to create an uplifting scheme for the new year ahead.

According to colour guru Leatrice Eiseman, who Culture Trip exclusively interviewed last year about 2017’s choice, ‘Greenery’, the new 2018 colour ‘communicates originality, ingenuity and visionary thinking’.

Courtesy of Pantone

It’s quite a leap from last year’s vibrant and fresh green hue, but equally as vivid. Ultra Violet symbolises experimentation and creativity – so if you’re brave enough, it’s a great colour to inject into an interiors scheme, whether that’s through an accent rug in an existing scheme, or going all out with purple wall coverings.

Chief product officer at, Vanessa Hurley-Perera, says: ‘Pantone’s choice of colour for 2018 is an interesting one. We’ve noticed how jewel tones in upholstery fabrics have become increasingly popular – especially velvets, as customers have started to look for alternatives to traditional neutral tones.’

It’s a great colour, according to Pantone, for providing calm in ‘today’s over-stimulated world’, making it the ideal hue for a bedroom retreat, but it also has energising qualities, so it can create the perfect backdrop for a dining room, inspiring people to truly connect.

With the cosmos and geology huge influential trends for 2017, it’s no wonder this colour has been chosen, as it blends well with these existing themes of precious stones, celestial-inspired lighting and accessories, plus iridescent surfaces.

Percy Loveseat in Pacific Quilted Velvet
Courtesy of

Interior designer Brian Woulfe of Designed by Woulfe gave his advice on how to use the versatile hue. ‘For the brave, go hard on block colours and mix this vibrant hue with other visceral and stimulating colours in your home in a Mondrian style,’ he said. ‘This will give your space a stylish edge – a heady cocktail of punkish rebellion and regal opulence.

‘Alternatively, the intoxicating purple sits wonderfully with the popular grey, earthy tones of 2017’s interior trends. Alongside these greys and ochres, the tones are softened and are much more seamlessly introduced to pre-existing interiors. Another great way to introduce a softer version of Ultra Violet is to opt for cashmere or wool soft furnishings in the punchy tone. For splashes of Ultra Violet, add a silk or satin piping to cushions, curtains or armchairs.’

Mood board featuring Metropolitan Field Tile in Heath (centre)
Courtesy of Original Style

As Woulfe suggests, this mystical violet works well on large-scale pieces such as sofas or upholstered headboards in a sumptuous fabric, but it can also be paired beautifully with a lighter pastel purple of a similar tone. Contrast Ultra Violet with a warm orange, vibrant pink or even lipstick red for an opulent look – choose fabrics with strong geometric prints to marry these colours together such as an Ikat print.

Get the look

Introduce Ultra Violet into your home with these key pieces for under £100:

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1 Hurricane N0.26 Vase in Heather, £74.95, Urban Avenue; 2 Kirkby Design Arcade Cushion in Midnight Purple, £63, from Sweetpea & Willow; 3 Paint colour FTT019, from £23 per litre, Mylands Paint; 4 Bronte Milan Lambswool Throw in Heather, £69.95, Black By Design; 5 Pantry Wall Clock in Purple Pie, £35, Newgate Clocks; 6 Blackbird and Bramble Oven Glove, £24.95, Annabel James; 7 Grape Riva Stackable Dining Chair, £69, Danetti.

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