Everybody will love being “in style” in 2020. You just can’t go wrong when the color of the year is the color you sit on, step into and rip holes in. Those reliable worn jeans are the color of an evening sky, a pretty girl’s eyes or a freshly encountered bruise following a proud tackle in flag football. Yep. That’s the Pantone color of the year.
We all have jeans somewhere in our closets, the attic or are currently wearing. Blue jeans are the American uniform.
Made of denim, jeans have fashionably softened over the years, but they were made to be worn while doing hard work so the wearer didn’t get injured and dirt didn’t show. They were worn by factory workers, miners and farmers and made of durable denim-colored dark indigo blue to stave off daily washing.
On its website, Pantone spokeswoman said its 2020 Color of the Year, Classic Blue, is a shade reminiscent of the sky at dusk.
"It's a color that anticipates what's going to happen next," said Laurie Pressman, vice president of Pantone Color Institute, which selects the Color of the Year. "What's the future going to bring as we move into the evening hours?"
This is a pertinent question as we embark on a new decade. But as forward-looking as it may be, the 2020 color brings us almost full circle to 1999’s Color of the Year, Cerulean, which captured the fears of stepping into the 21st century.
"We were moving into Y2K and wondering: Is the world going to fall apart?" said Pressman.
The Pantone Color Institute said it recognized similar feelings of instability gripping the world today, from the United States to the United Kingdom, Hong Kong, Syria and across the globe. It settled on a shade that offers reassurance, confidence and connection that people may be searching for in an uncertain global milieu.
Couple the stability of the color with the stability of denim blue-jeans and you have the perfect color, material and clothing for the year ahead. The history of indigo dye, denim fabric and blue jeans can be tossed together and called Levis. Pantone can’t say that because it cannot advocate for a brand, but Levis are a lot like Styrofoam, Kleenex and Vice-Grips: Each paved the way as a brand for the product.
Levis implies indigo blue denim jeans. The name “denim” comes from the name of a sturdy fabric called “Serge de Nîmes,” initially made in Nîmes, France, hence the French name “de Nîmes”…or Americanized, it’s “denim,”
Indigo is an organic dye with a distinctive blue color: Pantone’s “Classic Blue.” It was manufactured and used in India, from where it got its name “Indigo.” It was made from the plant Indigofera tinctoria. Used on cotton, it was the easiest method of coloring. The only problem was the color didn’t last as long as the fabric, so a less expensive synthetic dye replaced it.
Considering there are approximately 450 million pairs of blue jeans sold in the United States every year, we are assured of seeing “Classic Blue” nearly every day. Hopefully, the color will raise our spirits and make us feel in style and confident.
If anyone has an item for this column, please contact Sharon Cox, PO Box 1559, Jamestown, ND 58402-1559.