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Color of the Year 2014: Radiant Orchid

The new year is almost upon us, and it's the perfect time for fashion-savvy sewers to start looking ahead at spring trends and deciding what to incorporate into their own sewn wardrobes. Color is always part of major fashion trends, and spring 2014 designer runways were permeated with one particular color: a bright, confident blend of fuchsia and purple with rosy pink undertones that Pantone designates Radiant Orchid. In fact, it was used so abundantly that Pantone has declared Radiant Orchid the 2014 Color of the Year.

Personally, I'm a fan of bright, in-your-face color, and Radiant Orchid is quite appealing to me. It's one of those colors that flatter a variety of skin tones, because it has both cool and warm undertones, although it's so attention-grabbing that many people may shy away from it. Nevertheless, this happy, exuberant shade of purple/pink is already making its way into shops, including fabric stores.

Here are just a few instances of Radiant Orchid apparel fabrics, or very close approximations of the hue, found in online fabric shops:

Slub Jersey Knit (

Chevron double knit ( 

Pointelle Knit (

Silk Jacquard ( 

Italian Doublecloth Cotton Twill (

What do you think of 2014's Color of the Year? Is it too vibrant for you to wear? Too pink? Too purple? Just plain too much? Or will you be adding some Radiant Orchid to your sewn wardrobe this spring?


Comments (14)

user-1046391 user-1046391 writes: As long as it is the right shade, I love the color purple. It has been my favorite for years, and have many items in that color in my wardrobe. Glad to see that it will be even more available in other fabrics.
Posted: 5:23 pm on January 11th

LeeWells LeeWells writes: This color may be chosen by the clothing designers, but I will not be using it. I don't know whether I'd look good in orchid, but I would NOT FEEL like I look good in it, which is what counts. (it would not coordinate with the clothes in my closet either) Many years ago someone gave my daughters matching sweatshirts in a deeper purplish color. The first day they wore those to school each child was sent to the nurse by at least one teacher: one child was sent because she looked feverish, the other was sent because she looked pale. They arrived home indignant at the whole situation and neither wore purple again. (They kept the sweatshirts for weekends and camping) On the other hand my sister will probably enjoy Radiant Orchid as much as she likes anything from pale lavender to deep purple. Some colors have universal appeal, this doesn't seem like one of them.
Posted: 11:35 am on January 8th

CallaFerg CallaFerg writes: For once I'm ahead of the game?! I used this color in a jersey knit this summer/fall. I'm a brunette/hazel and the color is perfect for me.
Hey ya'll…I'm trendy!!!! lol lol
Posted: 12:41 pm on January 3rd

iris68 iris68 writes: Even though it looks good on Runway, this color makes me look sick. Just not the best for me, I guess. Good thing the Pantone has more choices than just this one.
Posted: 1:56 pm on January 2nd

sewtastic1 sewtastic1 writes: I love this color! Personally, my favorite color is purple, followed by pink. So great to have them in a combination! I'll be adding this color to my clothing and, as an accessory maker, I see handbags, scarves, jewelry and more in my future!
Posted: 8:24 am on January 2nd

Concordiabelle Concordiabelle writes: Sorry, I'm not a fan of season-based color analysis - or of this color. I can use it, with caution, as an accent. I'll enjoy it that way. Isn't it wonderful that we have a great big box of crayons to choose from?
Posted: 4:32 pm on January 1st

13STARS 13STARS writes: Radiant orchid? Really? This is Barney purple, the color (and character) dreaded by mothers of small children everywhere. My son is now in college and I still think of that damn dinosaur every time I see this color!
Posted: 3:50 pm on January 1st

KaSchu KaSchu writes: I love this colour. In fact I have 2 metres of stretch woven in my stash that I have had for at least 10 years. Nice to know I can be right in fashion this year. lol.
Posted: 12:39 am on January 1st

lacybe lacybe writes: love it, if this is the color of the year, this must become my year.
I love pink and it suits me very well since I belong to the people of the color type winter. brigth colors with a blue touch
in contrast to autumn colors brown and orange and yellow touch.

Posted: 7:50 pm on December 31st

user-1100630 user-1100630 writes: Oops. Should have read the very short article first. It answers my question why the color was chosen. Well, at least I made this basic, silly mistake at the end of the year. I would not want to start off the new year demonstrating such poor reading skills!
Posted: 6:30 pm on December 31st

user-1100630 user-1100630 writes: How do they know that is the color of 2014? Not trying to be argumentative. I would really like to know the process they come up with. Do they ask designers, buyers, magazine publishers?

Frankly, I don't like this color. It hurts my eyes and makes me feel claustrophobic. It has too strong a connotation to Easter for me. I do like most colors, even orange which has an even greater connotation to Halloween!

Maybe I like Halloween candy better than Easter! LOL
Posted: 6:27 pm on December 31st

Finally_Time Finally_Time writes: You know, this is my best color ever! Had a suit in this color and got rave reviews. Warm color people ( like my auburn-haired friend) have to look at the larger roster of 2014 top colors. Love it, love it!!!!
Posted: 5:45 pm on December 31st

Carly_Sue Carly_Sue writes: I love the radiant orchid color...I have worn it in the past and got rave remarks about how great of a color it is for me. I am thrilled that it is in vogue now.
Posted: 5:17 pm on December 25th

SueC56 SueC56 writes: It's all good!
Posted: 9:35 pm on December 19th

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