Color trends for fall 2007: What to know before you buy

Trade show season will soon be upon us, bringing with it walls and walls of product, blaring fluorescent lights, overwhelming choices, and a too-packed schedule. In the blur, evaluating which color stories will be the most crucial for the season can be a difficult task. To help, Dawn Rae Knoth, a colorist & surface designer specializing in the outdoor industry, highlights exclusively for SNEWS® readers the key fall 2007 trends to keep in mind:
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Trade show season will soon be upon us, bringing with it walls and walls of product, blaring fluorescent lights, overwhelming choices, and a too-packed schedule. In the blur, evaluating which color stories will be the most crucial for the season can be a difficult task. To help, here are the key fall 2007 trends to keep in mind:

Whites
White is a crucial story for fall 2007. It balances out the darker, more traditional fall colors and adds much needed freshness to the palette. Look for a whole family of whites that include light creams and grays and super pale hues. The strongest styles will have an “interactive” quality through texture, quilting, embellishments or tonal color complement. White will be especially important in ski and insulated pieces.

Neutrals
Gone are the days when neutrals are defined as black, gray, and khaki and confined to color supporting roles. For fall 2007, neutrals will be more dominant and cover a range of warm and cool hues. Key neutrals will have an intriguing color undertone, such as green or gold. Especially for men, these new neutrals are a great way to provoke interest in an otherwise conservative selection. Neutrals are also great to pair with the season’s brighter colors to tone down the intensity.

Blues
Blues return to more traditional hues like navy, royal blue, and denim for fall 2007. They provide a basic foundation for the season. For a more progressive look, pair navy or royal blue with warm neutrals such as camel and brown. Blue-greens, ranging from turquoise to pool greens, provide a great pop for both men and women.

Reds
Like blues, reds move toward more basic hues this season. For fall 2007, reds include classic to orange-based hues such as tomato, poppy, rusts, and flame. For women, a key progressive color is bright, intense fuchsia. Don’t ignore it.

Greens
Greens are the supporting actor in the fall 2007 palette -- important for overall success but not what you come away remembering. Most are influenced by nature and are herbal, leafy, and woodsy. Even for women, darker greens increase in placement, although brighter greens will still be used as accents. Greens are used as more of a neutral basic rather than a prominent color story.

Yellows/Golds
Yellow brought a much needed ray of sunshine to the spring 2007 palette. For fall, yellow and gold continue to be colors of the future. They are also the accent color of choice. Take note of the range from citrus-y to egg yolk to golden wheat to ochre. Handsome color stories will pair rich golds with bronze and deep browns.

© Dawn Rae Knoth 2007 (reprinted exclusively by SNEWS® with permission)

Dawn Rae Knoth is a colorist & surface designer specializing in the outdoor industry. She provides clients with valuable market direction information allowing them to succeed as industry leaders. Her services include trend forecasting, color merchandising, and textile design. Crave, Dawn Rae’s free newsletter, highlights emerging trends and interesting products. For further information on Dawn Rae’s services or to receive the newsletter, email her at knoth@dawnrae.com or call 541.389.2525. Visit www.dawnrae.com to view her work.

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