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Pantone Color of 2015: Marsala

Tie, Lapel Pin, Cufflinks in Burgundy

For more than 50 years, Pantone has standardized colors into swatches for designers and consumer based organizations to use to create new products.  Since 2000, Pantone has been dictating the color of the year.  They use a long process that scours the world looking at different color influences.  These colors have ranged from Cerulean (2000), Sand Dollar (2006), Mimosa (2009) and 2014’s color Radiant Orchid.  This leave us with the color for 2015: Marsala.

All About Marsala

How to Describe

Swatch of Marsala ColorMarsala is an earthy red with a touch of brown.  It is too red to be in the brown family yet too brown to be considered a true burgundy.  Maroon will be the closest neighboring color; some are using the name interchangeably, like Esquire.  In fact, marsala is an Italian style of wine, typically used in cooking.  This wine is how Pantone chose the name.  On their website they refer to Marsala as a “hearty, yet stylish tone” that “translates easily to fashion, beauty, industrial design, home furnishings and interiors.” They also call the color a “subtly seductive shade.”

Versatility of The Color

Marsala is much more versatile than last years Radiant Orchid.  Both men and women can wear, and accessorize with this color daily. While the color oozes sophistication, it also sparks the imagination.  This color is flattering against many skin tones as well, which makes it even easier to wear and pull off.  While maroon and burgundy are staple fall and winter pieces, this variation of color makes the perfect addition in any season as a statement color or accent piece.

How To Pair

Coordinating colors

Marsala with Complementing ColorsThis dramatic shade of burgundy and maroon is a widely versatile color.  Whether as a matte color, in textured material or high gloss, this color can be paired with almost anything.  The red undertones really pop against neutrals from grey to brown.  Even when paired with tints, like Terra Cotta or Silver Pink, our newest color of the year can really bring the palette together.  In addition to neutrals and pinks, Marsala can add to vibrant blues such as teal and turquoise.

Wedding Fashions For Women

TTwo sets of earrings by Endora Jewellery Designhis beautiful hue can be applied to all aspects in a wedding.  Because of its ability to look beautiful against most skin tones, this color makes for a great bridesmaid dress for formal and semi-formal occasions.  Whether the dress is long, like this Bloomingdale’s dress in dark cherry, or hits closer to the knee, like a J.Crew dress in deep garnet, anyone can find a bridesmaid dress to suit their wedding.  The great color is also perfect in bouquets, cake and table decorations as well as invitations and table cards.   Marsala also makes for a beautiful accent color to complement a main color.  These great earrings from Endora Jewellery Design would make a perfect accent to any color scheme.  There are endless possibilities to use marsala; this hue makes a great lipstick shade and can also be worn as a blush!

Wedding Styles for Men

Women aren’t the only ones who can pull off this beautiful shade at a wedding. For a subtle addition into the wardrobe of the groom (and groomsmen!) simply add a marsala colored tie.  The perfect boutonniere can be added as well for another touch of sophistication and class.  For less formal weddings, many opt for colored chino pants or change out the classic white shirt for a deep red or maroon.  For the more daring, a popular choice in attire for the groom is to add a marsala colored tux jacket.  If you’re already going for a colored jacket, why not opt for a new trend and go for a colored suit.  This look is not for everyone and will take some guts to pull off.  It can look very chic against a neutral colored wedding and really add contrast against the white or cream wedding dress of the bride.

Tie, Lapel Pin, Cufflinks in BurgundyFinal Thoughts

Marsala is a complex color with many different undertones and hidden hues yet it is such a simple color for everyone to wear.  You will be seeing this color all over this year.  Whether you see it in different clothing, accessories, shoes, makeup or housewares this color will be everywhere.  Its even used as a color for furniture, like this three drawer chest on Amazon.

Be on the look out for our next article on Marsala, different ways for men to wear the color everyday.  We will also be launching an article on our top spring and summer colors very soon!


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