Violet in PotPurple reign

Toodle-loo Greenery, bye-bye Rose Quartz and Serenity, in 2018 purple will reign supreme in homes across the globe.

Closely associated with royalty[1], politics[2], Prince[3], Fauvists, mysticism, David Bowie, The Phantom and 1970s-era Monaros and Valiants, purple is set to become the hue du jour.

Global colour authority Pantone has declared Ultra Violet (18-3838) is the 2018 Colour of the Year – and it’s not a shade for the faint hearted. With opulence, extravagance and ‘maximalism’ at its core, the jewel-toned statement colour is set to make appearances in homes across the globe – on feature walls, in soft furnishings like sofas and accessories (cushions, throws, linens).

“In interiors, Ultra Violet can transform a room into one of extraordinary self-expression, or conversely its polish can tone down a room with subdued, modern pairings. Adding spice and brightness, Ultra Violet calls attention to a tufted couch, piece of art or accent wall. As a color that can take you in so many directions, Ultra Violet makes a statement in any space, whether it’s one of tradition and elegance or unexpected boldness,” the Pantone Color Institute stated.

Chosen as it is “the most complex of all colours, because it takes two shades that are seemingly diametrically opposed – blue and red – and brings them together to create something new”, the blue-based purple “communicates originality, ingenuity and visionary thinking”, a Pantone spokesperson told The New York Times.

Historically Pantone’s colour of the year infiltrates everything from home décor to fashion and even film and television.

Landlords looking to appeal to the trend-conscious may find themselves reaching for Ultra Violet when they spruce up their rentals (if purple feature walls are a step too far, pots of petunias, verbenas, clematis, alliums, pansies, hydrangeas and irises tap into the zeitgeist). PMs with a penchant for purple will no doubt be in their element when they carry out inspections (those with an aversion to the colour might find Jimi Hendrix’s lyrics “purple haze, all in my brain” on a loop in their heads!), as interior designers predict the shade will be wholeheartedly embraced in Australian homes.


[1] Due to the expense involved in obtaining the dye from a small mollusk that was only found in the Phoenician trading city of Tyre, the purple pigment was reserved for royalty and high-ranking clergy right up until the 1850s.

[2] Purple was teamed with green and white during the suffragette movement and is favoured by the likes of Hilary Clinton today.

[3] Pantone released a purple shade in August 2017 as a tribute to the pop icon.