Pantone Color Trends 2012 / 2013 – Lodestar

The Pantone Lodestar Color Pallet – image from Pantone Color trends Fall/Winter 2012/2013 webinar

Wikapedia states: A lodestar is a relatively bright, easily found star that is used to find direction, particularly with reference to Polaris, which during the 20th and 21st centuries indicates the direction to the north within a fraction of a degree. (Due to the slow precession of the Earth’s axis, this is not a permanent relationship.) The word is now considered archaic and is rarely used in its literal sense.[1]

I can see why – interpreting trends can appear impossible if they are to be taken literally. The interpretation of all this color in the confines of a single space sounds like the sort of mind-numbing challenge devised for design student final projects – but like most things that can be over-thought, the answer is simple – textiles.

I watched the best episode yet of Candice Olson’s “Candice Tells All” which aired on HGTV last night. It was not her best – ever design, instead one of the better shows explaining the introduction and use of color. This episode featured a cameo with color expert Jane Lockhart, filmed on location at The Toronto Textile Museum.

Candice quoted the 60 / 30 / 10 color rule, which designers use to define the proportions within a room in which the opportunity to introduce color exists.

Walls are 60% of a rooms area – maximum saturation

30% Textiles (drapes, pillows, area rugs) – medium color saturation

10% accents. This is a concrete rule that does a good job of providing choices by defining the proportions of color saturation that you can choose so you can determine the level of color saturation you feel comfortable living with.

But be careful; design rules are subject to change. This conventional wisdom predates the move toward open concept spaces. Floors and ceilings are huge opportunities for color in wall-less spaces and are the 5th and 6th walls of rooms.

Ceilings are too often and after-thought in designs – this graphic up-date to a coffered ceiling is anything but! image from

If you want to get color area rugs and pillows are the easiest ways of bringing in changeable color that you need never touch a paint roller to bring to your space. Textiles bring in pattern, and choices. Scale up or down the number of colors in your lodestar pallet to find the proportion of color that creates your perfect mix.