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Going Green in 2017: Apartment Color Trends to Watch

apartment color trends

Pantone’s Color of the Year for 2017 Signals New Beginnings

The outcome of the presidential election may be changing the way that developers, builders and analysts view the apartment industry in 2017. And it will most certainly inspire how “green” multifamily gets in the coming year – in more ways than one.

The incoming administration’s stance on energy and environmental policy is a little gray at the moment, which may cloud the country’s green building trends. In recent years, multifamily developers have strived to create desirable living spaces through energy efficient buildings aimed at improving the health and lifestyle of residents.

However, green doesn’t have to be confined inside walls to improve and move forward the living experience. At least the Pantone Color Institute thinks so. The authority on color standards for the design industry says that Greenery – the Color of the Year for 2017 – is a symbol of new beginnings.

Color of the Year to revive, restore and renew

Pantone said in December that Pantone 15-0343 Greenery is sure to revive, restore and renew. “Illustrative of flourishing foliage and the lushness of the great outdoors, the fortifying attributes of Greenery signals individuals to take a deep breath, oxygenate and reinvigorate.”

The Color of the Year program has become a large cultural influencer since its inception in a marketing campaign 16 years ago. The bright, leafy green shade was chosen by Pantone Color Institute staff after searching for art and fashion influences, as well as a number of social and industrial venues. Pantone has a portfolio of more than 7,000 colors available to the graphic arts/printing and fashion industries.

This year’s choice follows suit with multifamily’s latest attempts to create more openness by Pantone says Greenery will add a splash of the green outdoors to a room’s backdrop and ambiance. Including in living walls, terrariums, botanically-themed wallpaper, paint, accent furniture and decor will create the illusion of nature indoors.

apartment color trends

Greenery offers ‘self-assurance and boldness to live life on our own terms’

Color is often described as a big influencer in moods and how well a person may adapt to certain surroundings. Experts believe color affects moods and the way we feel; an apartment outfitted in reds and oranges may feel warmer than one with blue walls. Color is one way the multifamily industry continues to attract and retain residents and make residents feel at home in their apartments.

Also, a thriving economy can lead to more spirited shades. Pantone believes Greenery offers a breath of fresh air during some complicated times.

“Greenery bursts forth in 2017 to provide us with the hope we collectively yearn for amid a complex social and political landscape,” said Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director of the Pantone Color Institute, in a news release. “Satisfying our growing desire to rejuvenate, revitalize and unite, Greenery symbolizes the reconnection we seek with nature, one another and a larger purpose.”

Pantone says the influence of plant life in Greenery can improve self-esteem, reduce anxiety and heighten awareness of one’s surroundings.

“The tangy yellow-green speaks to our desire to express, explore, experiment and reinvent, imparting a sense of buoyancy,” said Eiseman. “Through its reassuring yet assertive vibrancy, Greenery offers us self-assurance and boldness to live life on our own terms, during a time when we are redefining what makes us successful and happy.”

Pantone working with other companies to market color

Pantone is working with other companies to increase the brush of Greenery in 2017 for the first time. Airbnb will emphasize Greenery into its hospitality offerings in 2017, Pantone said. Also, Advertising Age reported that Pantone is working with appliance maker Keurig and cosmetics company Butter London on using the color in marketing products.

Last year, Pantone selected two colors – periwinkle Serenity and pink Rose Quartz – and through touted their use with street artists that have large social followings in Los Angeles, New York City and Miami through Instagram. The last time a green shade was chosen was in 2013 when Emerald got the nod.

In stark contrast, paint industry leaders have chosen more neutral colors for 2017. Benjamin Moore picked Shadow, a purple-gray hue, as its top choice, while PPG Paints chose a similar shade, Violet Verbena. Behr Paint’s 2017 palette includes some neutral choices but has six shades of earthy greens and taupes.


Contributing Editor, Property Management Insider
President, Ballpark Impressions, LLC

author photo two

Tim Blackwell is a long-time publishing and printing executive in the Dallas/Fort Worth area who writes about the multifamily housing and transportation industries. He has contributed numerous articles to Property Management Insider, and worked as a newspaper reporter in the D/FW area. Blackwell is president of Ballpark Impressions, and publishes the Cowcatcher Magazine. He is a member of the Fort Worth Chapter/Society of Professional Journalists.

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