Shades of Meaning
Jeff Wright, design director at PremiumWear, Grand Rapids, Mich., echoed that sentiment. “Earth tones and eco-related colors like blues and greens are … becoming increasingly popular.”
Eiseman pointed to shades of hunter and pine-tree green as being the most directional for the upcoming year, though Mike De La Vega, operations at Santa Ana, California-based Article.1 Apparel, mentioned that for organic items, raw neutrals such as olive are continually requested. “A lot of customers that come in and are new to the organic game, stick to the earth-tone colors … for some reason, they associate that with organic,” he added.
Blue-Purple: Current, Fashion-Forward
For those customers who are ready to branch out, however, De La Vega noted that blues are going to be big moving forward. The color family first started to gain popularity on the fall 2008 runways, but according to Eiseman, it’s not meant to be a one-season wonder. “As far as fashion is concerned, you do things for the next season that are a variation on the theme of what you did for the season before,” she said.
In particular, Eiseman sees a continuation of the blue-purples (lilac-esque shades with touches of purple). They’re richly saturated and serious, yet still connote the soothing vibe typically associated with blues. It’s color-speak at its loudest. “Today people are looking for a little bit more longevity,” she noted. “As the economy gets dicey, [they] get a little more practical.” And nothing can be construed as less sensible than a fly-by-night fad.
In this case, distributors can find stability in the knowledge these shades are going to gather strength throughout the next year. “Colors come to the forefront in a very natural progression of the color life cycle,” Wright said, adding, “[They] start from a very esoteric view that, historically, is a result of global, social,
economic and lifestyle influences.”