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Pantone Colour - Root Beer Float

A Pantone Colour With Real Flavour

For those who are not in the know, Pantone is a company that creates colour-matching systems. These have always been the design industry’s undisputed colour ‘bible.’ Still, over the years, they have become a trendsetter for everything from interior design to furniture, food and fashion. And their colour names are the fodder for creativity, inspiration and great storytelling.

Pantone pronounces a “Colour of the Year” each year to represent the cultural zeitgeist. With neutral browns, beiges, taupes and creams making a comeback, it seemed a good time to talk about – drumroll – Root Beer Float.

Pantone Root Beer Colour

Yes, you read that right. This particular colour of the year may not be the most exciting to look at, but the name is a winner for me. It takes me back to homemade treats and trips to the local A&W with my dad for their iconic concoctions. It’s a delicious combination of brown and beige that evokes memories of sipping on a frothy, creamy root beer float on a warm summer day. And while some people might be scratching their heads and wondering how a beverage-inspired hue made it to the top of the colour charts, many people embraced the whimsy and nostalgia of this clever choice – and seem to be back on that palette path. 

Root Beer Float inspires cozy, warm living spaces with natural textures like wood and leather. It fits nicely with a resurgence of mid-century modern design with its earthy tones and clean lines or as a nod to 70s style with its love of warm browns and oranges. Seeing these in local boutiques, vintage stores, and my kids’ homes is a testament to the circular pattern of popularity.

But let’s be honest. The real winners of this Pantone Colour are the foodies out there. With Root Beer Float as the colour of choice, it’s easy to imagine desserts and drinks that pay homage to this classic treat. Think cupcakes with vanilla frosting, a swirl of chocolate syrup, or a cocktail (after all, it is patio season) that combines root beer and creamy liqueurs.

Some people may scoff at the idea of a drink-inspired colour taking over the design world, but there’s something to be said for the joy and nostalgia a Root Beer Float can evoke. And whether you choose to jump on the Pantone colour wagon (past, present or future) or incorporate it into your home, wardrobe, or design is a matter of personal choice. 

But for me, as a copywriter, I embrace the whimsy and enjoy the ride. If that’s not for you and all else fails, go out and treat yourself to a root beer float.

Watch for more blogs celebrating – well, maybe not the colours themselves – but certainly the stories they inspire.

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