Fashion & Beauty

Color Us Blue … in a Good Way

December 10, 2019

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THE PROGNOSTICATORS at Pantone have looked into the future—and it’s blue. Classic Blue, not Cerulean, a baby blue that was the color chosen for the beginning of the millennium, and not Blue Iris, the 2008 color blue with a purplish cast.

Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute, one of the most influential organizations in color forecasting, describes their 2020 pick as “a boundless blue evocative of the evening sky.”  Whether PANTONE 19-4052 is cobalt or more like blueberry is in the eye of the beholder. Vogue calls it cobalt;  Architectural Digest sees azure; Fast Company says blueberry, while at MyLittleBird we’re split between whether it looks more like cobalt or sapphire blue.

In selecting the color that best mirrors the zeitgeist, the company press release states : …”the reassuring qualities of the thought-provoking Classic Blue highlight our desire for a dependable and stable foundation on which to build as we cross the threshold into a new era.”

Are Pantone’s experts picking up on the angst of the times by choosing a “dependable” color? We don’t know. But you can bet your bippy that we’re going to see a lot of it in the coming months.

Below, some suggestions for what Classic Blues to wear, use or gift next week or next year.


—Janet Kelly


LEFT: Shisheido Kajal InkArtist 4-in-1 Eye Pencil ($25, Saks Fifth Avenue) comes in Gunjo Blue, which, despite the name, looks like a pretty color to brighten the eyes. Purportedly smudge-proof, crease-proof, waterproof and tear-proof, the point can create a thin band along the inner rim of the eye and is also wide enough to swipe across the entire lid. CENTER: From the quintessential chronicler of fashion history, Bill Cunningham: On the Street: Five Decades of Iconic Photography ($43.19, Amazon) begins in the 1970s when Cunningham’s photos began appearing in the Times and continuing through his death in 2016. He captures New York moments like the 1980s transit strike, the rise of 1990s casual Fridays and the sadness after 9/11.  An ideal gift for anyone interested in fashion and/or photography. ABOVE RIGHT: Pantone Swatch of 19-4052 Classic Blue. RIGHT: Say hello to the new decade with this Le Vernis Longwear Nail Color in Radiant Blue from Chanel ($28). A good bet for making your nails a shining statement.


LEFT: This warm, stylish House of Fluff Faux Fur Shearling Hat in blueberry ($125) is unfortunately sold out, but it’s still available in two other colors. The hats are made from 100% post-consumer plastics.  CENTER: Maximum storage capacity in the smallest space? We’re all for it, and this 4.5 high by -3.4 long by-.4″deep (closed) Double Mini Wallet ($42, Museum of Modern Art) is hand-stitched from recycled leather. RIGHT: A cold-weather staple, J. Crew’s Pom-Pom Cable-Knit Sweater ($98), looks fresh and new in blue. Wear with leggings or a swishy metallic skirt. Available in five other colors.



LEFT: Take the gray out of winter with blue. On days you want to feel more glamorous, wear Michael Michael Kors’s Boucle Coat ($296.25) with its detachable luxe faux fur collar. For casual occasions, forgo the collar. Either way, throw it on over chunky knits and leggings or dressy silk skirts. RIGHT: Cuddly coats are this season’s hot item. This splurge-y Max Mara Teddy Bear Icon (reduced to $2,583 from $3,690, Mytheresa), made from a plush alpaca and wool-blend, features wide lapels, drop shoulders and spacious welt pockets. The oversize fit makes it simple to slip on over multiple layers.


LEFT: Feeling your inner starlet? Silly but fabulous, this sheer Cassandra Deluxe Dressing Gown  (Boudoir by D’Lish,$499) with bright satin ribbon belt is trimmed with oodles of marabou. It’s from a luxury loungewear line from theatrical costume designer Catherine D’Lish. RIGHT: Straight off the Spring 2020 runway of designer Francesco Risso’s Marni, a ripped off-the-shoulder sweater is paired with a matching lustrous satin skirt in Pantone’s 2020 color of the year.


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3 thoughts on “Color Us Blue … in a Good Way

  1. Nancy G says:

    Blue is such a great color, this iteration particularly. It can be calming, but also electric. And there’s nothing mamby-pamby about it. It’s a real color.

  2. Carol says:

    ooooh, love this shade of blue! goes with everything! will be on the lookout for another sweater…

    1. Janet Kelly says:

      And one that won’t go out of style in a nanosecond.

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