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Archive for April 27th, 2010

Color of the Year: Turquoise

Tuesday, April 27th, 2010

I’m a bit behind on this announcement. After all, Pantone made their announcement of the 2010 Color of the Year months ago. I got the word from Irene A (thanks for the link, Irene). Somehow it got buried in other news.

TURQUOISE is the color of the year for 2010. (At least it is according to Pantone, a company which defines trends in visual design realms.) Imagine that!

Now… Turquoise is at least my color of the last decade or two. In fact, in 1969 I was allowed to choose merely two colors of Red Heart yarn at the five and dime store all the way in East Lansing. (That was not all of 10 miles from our house.)

I was allowed two colors, and no amount of begging for more got me anywhere. It was painfully difficult to narrow it that far but I had no choice. I was about 11 years old.

That year my choices were: bright Turquoise and kelly Green. I’ve been on a roll with this color for a pretty long time. I even remember that year I had a pair of bell-bottom pants and a 3/4-sleeved mock turtleneck in matching turquoise fabrics, which I loved to wear together.

I worked for Casual Corner clothing store for 6 months back in 1987. I remember that year we had piles of muted pink and muted sage green sweaters to sell. Tons of them. It was holiday season and these poor men would wander in trying to find a gift. I asked them if they had seen her wear that color before. Whew.

But the jade-turquoise (greenish, deep, saturated) wool jersey dresses? They looked good on a LOT of people. I even sold one of those dresses to my mom, who wore it a long time.

I figured out then, that most people can pull off turquoise clothing, though they will prefer one “flavor” of it over another. (Pinks, you must get the exact right one or you may look ill.)

I look best in a hot, intense turquoise, and I prefer a greenish variation when I can find it. Someone else might look better in a softer, swimming-pool blue-turquoise. My mom favors a greenish medium-aqua in the summertime. A redheaded friend looks stunning in a deep teal. All of these colors, in my mind, are turquoise. They all are somewhere between a true blue and a true green.

Pantone’s color of the year is a soft, but not too gray, version of turquoise. It’s a little more blue than green, and about halfway between white and black (value around 5, maybe 6). Funny, but I’m sitting here typing this with a “coffee” mug next to me which I got at the Ann Arbor Art Museum. It is a little more green than the color of the year… but it says “Pantone (C) 3272 C” which amuses me.

For the record, the first photo in this column is me with Brian as The Fabulous Heftones. That dress was my wedding dress. It was a deep turquoise silk, evening dress by Liz Claiborne. I was not going to get married in a froofy, girly, lace dress. Brian said it didn’t matter to him what I wore, the point was to get married. I am still delighted I found that dress, right off the rack and ready to go. On sale. Perfect!

Here is a photo of me in about 1971, wearing a turquoise-paneled dress. Does anyone remember “bonded” fabric? Nasty stuff… built a bit like a thin/wide sandwich. There was a thin layer of knit (typically cotton) on the public side, with a very thin layer of foam-yes-foam in the middle, and the back layer was nylon tricot knit. Dry clean. Prone to sit-out and de-laminate. It did allow structure.

Bonded fabric was all I had (for dress-up dresses) for a while in the late 60s and early 70s. This dress was made of the stuff.

The middle photos? More turquoise… my theme color. First is a small mitered square project made with leftover sockyarns, from socks I’ve knit.  No yarn was purchased for the project. The second was my prototype which turned into the One-Day Neckwarmer, also from leftover stash yarns.

I’m incurable. I don’t mind. I think 2010 is my year, then?