Benjamin Moore’s 2021 color of the year, Aegean Teal, is meant to instill a sense of comfort and reflection inside the home.

Benjamin Moore’s 2021 color of the year, Aegean Teal, is meant to instill a sense of comfort and reflection inside the home.

Photo provided by Benjamin Moore


Benjamin Moore, Pantone release colors of the year

By: Sarah Wojcik | C&G Newspapers | Published January 12, 2021

 The 2021 Pantone colors of the year, Illuminating and Ultimate Gray, are akin to the “light at the end of the tunnel,” according to Corie Conroy, president of Birmingham-based First Impression Home Staging and Interior Design.

The 2021 Pantone colors of the year, Illuminating and Ultimate Gray, are akin to the “light at the end of the tunnel,” according to Corie Conroy, president of Birmingham-based First Impression Home Staging and Interior Design.

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METRO DETROIT — For many people, 2021 is a welcome transition away from the unprecedented global turmoil in 2020. Both the Pantone Color Institute and Benjamin Moore Paints annually release a color of the year, and their selections for 2021 reflect a desire for optimism, grounding and soothing.

Pantone’s dual color of the year is “Illuminating,” a sunny yellow, and “Ultimate Gray,” a practical gray; while Benjamin Moore’s color of the year is “Aegean Teal,” which combines green, blue and gray tones.

Pantone’s latest color of the year marks the second time the Pantone Color Institute named a two-color combination — the first time was in 2016 with Rose Quartz, a warm pink tone, and Serenity, a cool, tranquil blue.

Illuminating is “a warming yellow shade imbued with solar power,” while Ultimate Gray is “emblematic of solid and dependable elements which are everlasting and provide a firm foundation.”

According to the Pantone Color Institute, the pairing of Illuminating and Ultimate Gray is meant to convey a message of happiness supported by fortitude — hope that everything is going to get brighter.

“Practical and rock solid, but at the same time warming and optimistic, this is a color combination that gives us resilience and hope,” Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute, said in a prepared statement. “We need to feel encouraged and uplifted; this is essential to the human spirit.”

Pantone is a provider of professional color standards for the design industry. The color-of-the-year selection looks at world trends, including entertainment, art, fashion, travel destinations, lifestyles, technology, social media and more.

Corie Conroy, president of First Impression Home Staging and Interior Design in Birmingham, said the pairing of Illuminating and Ultimate Gray is like the light at the end of the tunnel.

“Hopefully, 2021 is going to be a much better year,” Conroy said. “It’s kind of an optimistic outlook of what we have to look forward to after this virus is finished.”

She said the color combination is great for bedrooms and bathrooms, specifically using the gray on the walls with pops of cheerful, relaxing yellow in the form of ornamental pillows, rugs, chairs, accent tables and towels — accessories that can be easily exchanged.

Conroy added that the color combination lends itself well to the exterior of the home for a midcentury modern look, specifically with dark gray siding and a bright yellow door.

“It’s a really beautiful and striking color combination with a welcoming vibe when you walk up to the door,” she said. “It’s just very cheerful.”

She also recommended incorporating the color scheme into outdoor living areas, with gray furniture and yellow umbrellas, cushions and other furnishings in the summer months.

Benjamin Moore touts its color of the year, Aegean Teal, as an ideal hue for reflection and resetting. Intriguing, balanced and soothing, the paint company believes the soul-nurturing hue helps to settle in and celebrate simple pleasures.

Aaron Binder, general manager of Teknicolor Paints (a Benjamin Moore retailer) in Grosse Pointe Woods, described the color as a “very subtle and soothing” mid-tone color and added that clients to his store have used it as both a wall color and as an accent color.

He said it is also an ideal color to paint cabinets, as it is not too dark and not too light.

Besides the color of the year, Benjamin Moore also releases a palette of 11 complimentary colors, which includes “Gray Cashmere,” “Atrium White,” “Muslin” and “Foggy Morning,” designed to be used in conjunction with Aegean Teal to facilitate a desirable blend and flow.

“We’re kind of seeing a trend away from gray to greige (a blend of gray and beige) that is warmer, and using a white trim,” Binder said. “Another trend I’m seeing, too, is whites. I also see a lot of people doing darker colors on the trim and lighter colors on the walls.”

While there used to be a rule that darker colors should go on walls and lighter colors on trim, there are “really no more rules,” Binder said.

Benjamin Moore, like Pantone, undergoes an involved research process in determining its color of the year, considering design, art, fashion, cultural and environmental influences around the globe.

“Each year, we invite homeowners to use the Color Trends palette as a point of inspiration to bring color into the home in new ways,” Andrea Magno, director of color marketing and development for Benjamin Moore, said in a prepared statement.