2014 color of the year: Radiant orchid

Carol RH Malasig

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Be sure you're in vogue. Wear the color of the year.

MANILA, Philippines – The dawn of 2014 doesn’t just mean a new chapter in everyone’s lives. It isn’t just about new resolutions and a chance for people to reinvent themselves. The beginning of 2014 also means the end of Emerald’s reign over colors, as the Pantone Colour Institute named “Radiant Orchid” as this year’s color of the year.

Don’t roll your eyes just yet. The color of the year is something that most of us dismiss – but is something that is considered rather important by businesses and market movers throughout the year. From makeup to clothes to cars and home decor, expect to continue seeing this vibrant shade throughout the year. Even themes and color choices for upcoming weddings this year are set to be affected by Pantone’s choice.

So how does “Radiant Orchid” actually look like? Pantone describes it as “an enchanting harmony of fuchsia, purple and pink undertones,” adding that the color “reaches across the color wheel to intrigue the eye and spark the imagination.”

SWATCH. Pantone says the color "inspires confidence and emanates great joy, love and health." Photo from Pantone's website.


The company watches runways and emerging color trends in different markets and debates on them in a meeting where they pick the hue and iron out the tint. The emergence of pink and purple shades in the runway as well as in makeup looks of celebrities contributed to the selection. The color was also seen in the auto industry.

LIMITED EDITION. Cehverolet came up with a "deep magenta metallic" version of the Sonic. Photo screengrabbed from Chevrolet's website.

But Pantone, in a statement, says the color of the year must also match current issues and symbolize the world’s feelings. When Emerald was selected last year, it was a time for economic recovery and Pantone describes the color they selected as a symbol of “growth, renewal, regeneration, and prosperity.”

For this year, it’s all about expanding creativity and originality among individuals as the world’s population moves to become more free, adventurous, and open to more choices – no matter how different they can be.

Wearing the trend

Some might argue that Radiant Orchid is a color that doesn’t work for everyone. Such a bold color can either wash out or darken some skin tones if worn the wrong way or as a full on outfit (a brave but very risky move). However, the color can work wonders as an accent in an otherwise plain outfit. Not everyone can be too technical about it as well so it’s best to play with the colors from the same color family, playing with varying shades of pinkish-purples.

An all black ensemble will have a flirty vibe just by adding a pinkish-purple lipstick to your face. In reverse, a radiant orchid dress won’t look too loud if paired with subdued colors. After all, in this day and age when anyone can wear anything he or she wants with hardly any rules, finding the balance in everything is key. Designer Dona Karan once said that “Design is a constant challenge to balance comfort with luxe, the practical with the desirable.”

In the market

Indeed, the color is already taking over the market with 2014 only a few days old. It already has its own line in Sephora and racks of clothes – from designer to RTW – are also starting to sport the shade.

Forever 21 has had a wide array of designs in varying shades of orchid. A solid orchid dress in a regal tint makes for a great evening outfit.

NOT JUST FOR MESTIZAS. The radiant orchid shade, when worn right, actually gives morena girls a glow. Photo from Forever 21.

Over at H&M which is slated to set up its first store Manila this year, even sporty outfits are getting a girly makeover with this year’s shade.

FUN AND FLIRTY. You don't have to give up your feminine side on days when you just want to wear comfy clothes. Photo from H&M.

Here are more pieces we found online sporting the trend:


THIS COLOR IN ALMOST ANYTHING. Radiant orchid works as a purse, a jacket, even as a lamp or a pillow, giving your outfit or your home a bright pop of color. Collage made through Polyvore.

The good thing about radiant orchid is that unlike some past choices for color of the year, it is a color that will work as a blush, on your nails, a lipstick, and as eyeshadow – there is a tint or a hue close enough to Pantone’s swatch for every skin color.

BE ADVENTUROUS. The color of the year is about imagination and creativity. Collage created via Polyvore.


At the end of the day, fashion is about expressing yourself. So if you’re feeling a little bit creative today, why not try a pop of this year’s color on your outfit?

Let us know how you’ll wear the color of the year in the comments section below. We’d love to hear your ideas. – Rappler.com

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