28 July 2010

Sherwin-Williams' 2011 color forecast, part two

As I mentioned yesterday, Sherwin-Williams just released its 2011 color forecast. That forecast is broken into four palettes. I profiled the first of the four yesterday and today I'm moving onto the second in the series. The color folks at Sherwin-Williams are calling this one Purely Refined. Here's the inspiration image.

Here's the description in Sherwin-Williams own words:
True luxury doesn't shout its presence with glitz, glamour and bling.  It whispers, revealing its pedigree through clean, classic lines, exquisite tailoring and handcrafted heirloom quality.  Pared down is the new upscale, and its color palette demonstrates similar restraint, filled with understated neutrals, yet with nuances and undertones that interact in intriguing ways.  Layering organic textures and subtle detailing add to the natural elegance of the timeless look.
This looks to be an evolution of the elegant palettes that have evolved from the glam palettes of ten years go. It's almost as if it's a grown up version of yesterday's new palette, Bold Invention. It has a definite retro vibe, but I don't think that's coming from the palette so much as its coming from the inspiration image. I've been saying these inspiration images have been Mad Men-ed and I don't think I'm too far off. I suppose that if there has to be a nostalgic touchstone, at least Mad Men doesn't sugar coat anything.

According to Sherwin-Williams, the driving force behind this palette are the following trends they've identified.
  • Ombre-dyed fabrics
  • Textured linen
  • Concrete
  • Smooth pebble floors
  • Pleated detailing
  • Clean lines, oval shapes
  • One-of-a-kind, artisan-crafted pieces
I can see this more readily than yesterday's, but that might be a function of my not being 25. In any event, here are the colors themselves. They are broken into two sub-palettes, Primary and Supporting. The Primaries are:

SW 6242 Bracing Blue

SW 6164 Svelte Sage

SW 6414 Rice Paddy

SW 0055 Light French Gray

SW 0021 Queen Anne Lilac

SW 6239 Upward

SW 0050 Classic Light Buff

And in the Supporting role,

SW 0012 Empire Gold

SW 7674 Peppercorn

SW 6032 Dutch Cocoa

So what do you guys think? Yesterday's Bold Invention seemed like a hit or miss. How does this compare? How does this one do on its own? Are they onto something?

I'm of two minds with this one. I'm the saturated color guy so naturally I think it's avoiding making a statement. At the same time, I think it looks clean and new. What's the consensus on Sherwin-Williams' 2011 color forecast part two?


  1. And this from the woman who doesn't like grays... It's my favorite color in that palette two. Great minds think alike Sharon.

  2. Love it! Except the Bracing Blue is reading really cornflower to me and kinda killing it. Maybe should be supporting color... I wish they'd gone more feminine with this trend (as much as I'm not that girl) and left the retro to other palettes. But the real question is did Mad Men start the retro theme or just push along an already-forward-moving trend?! I say the latter.

  3. Seeing these colors with any degree of accuracy on a monitor is impossible, Bracing Blue is a lot less cornflowery in person. I think Mad Men gave the mid-century retro thing a real shot in the arm. The show itself isn't watched by multitudes by the way, just smart people. As a result of that, it's unwise to underestimate its cultural clout.

  4. Hello Golden Girls! The 80s are back.

  5. It's missing fuschia. Maybe jewel tones will make a comeback after all.

  6. These are so not me- I scrolled through as quickly as possible! To others maybe they are soft and refined, to me they are tired...
    Looking forward to tomorrow!

  7. I love the two greys and the lilac.. at least for my wardrobe. The rest is kinda meh though

  8. In and of themselves, I think these colors make for a refined and attractive palette. I'm convinced that it's the inspiration photos that are throwing me.

  9. What Erin said. Pastels forevah!

  10. Yeah, but these are pastels with an edge, I don't care what anybody says. An edge I tell you.

  11. I'm on the fence with this one. Love the greys, blues, and lilac, but I prefer bold colours over pastels. Even pastels with an edge :-)

    I think it's a pretty palette, but I'm holding out for a bright & energetic palette :-)


  12. I detest "Classic Light Buff" ...but then again, I pretty much dread any color that could be called 'buff'... Maybe it's just @concretedetail's deep-rooted affection for all things alive and color-full that rubbed off on me...Apples and trees, they say. Otherwise, I do rather adore Upward.

    And I agree with you on the Mad Men connections - upon seeing the inspiration photo, I actually glanced over the page for a silhouette of Don Draper.

  13. Kelly: Every day, we get one step closer to Friday's Kelly James palette. I like the grays, blues and lilacs too, pastel naysayers be damned.

    Cham: Upward and Classic Light Buff is a combo that will make you swoon. Trust me. And no one anywhere should ever underestimate the overwhelming power of Mad Men to influence everything from color schemes to the flavors of breakfast cereals.

  14. it makes me want to cry.
    its so boring and sad - though i like the light french grey and, yes, the peppercorn... just not with all the other sad washed out drabness.

  15. Hmmm. Thanks for chining in. I don't get the sadness from this one that you do but I think it's an attempt to reflect the sadness we're supposedly feeling from hard times.

  16. That cornflower is my grandmother's favorite colour. Want to paint your condo your grandmother's favorite colour? Yeah, me neither.

    However. The lilac is fresh, I like the French Gray, and the rest look like a soothing master bedroom...

  17. Something throws it for me here. But I'm not a big pastel guy.


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