Thursday, December 10, 2020

Ultimate Gray and Illuminating

It's here! The Pantone Color of the Year 2021 was announced yesterday, and for just the second time ever, THE color is actually a pair: Ultimate Gray and Illuminating.

From Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director of the Pantone Color Institute, "the union of an enduring ultimate gray with the vibrant yellow illuminating expresses a message of positivity supported by fortitude. Practical and rock solid but at the same time warming and optimistic, this is a color combination that gives us resilience and hope. We need to feel encouraged and uplifted; this is essential to the human spirit." Personally, I welcome all that positivity, so I'll take it!

And if I keep with tradition, this will be my 10th(!) year creating with the Pantone COTY. Here's a review of my previous Pantone-inspired creations....

::Classic Blue 2020 :: "Utterly Blue"

:: Living Coral 2019 :: "Timeless"

:: Ultra Violet 2018 :: "Grape Fizzy"

:: Greenery 2017 :: "Evergreenery"

:: Rose Quartz and Serenity 2016 :: "Pantone Meets Bias Tape"

:: Marsala 2015 :: "Sizzling"

:: Emerald 2013 :: "An Emerald Table"

:: Tangerine Tango 2012 :: "Tangerisk"

I find it interesting reading about the new colors and why they were chosen. If you do too, here's some good reading from a variety of sources:


  1. I think the combination is very interesting. There was definitely a surge of gray and yellow quilts somewhere around ~2013-2015 if I'm remembering correctly.

  2. I like working with grey, in all its shades, but that yellow is a bit much

  3. Fun with color!
    Inspiration is a good kickstart, I'm looking forward to your interpretation.

  4. I love all your previous Pantone COTY quilts. Do you have a favorite so far? - will be excited to see what you come up with this year. These are harder colors for me, Grey - I am with, the yellow... I guess its a good excuse to go fabric shopping right? haha

  5. I love seeing what you do with the colors each year! and I expect you will advise us all on what kona/bella/etc fabrics too order!

  6. I love seeing all your Pantone quilts together like that! I'm really liking the colour combo in this year's colours. I'm a huge fan of grey and that yellow is such a happy one. I might be tempted to try using both in a quilt!

  7. You do such a good job, committing yourself to these each year. And your projects are always spot-on. We'll be watching to see what you create on the sunny side of 2021.