Sewing for the Season: Fall 2015 Pantone


Anticipated colors for this fall and winter. Image from material at

Once upon a time in the early days of this blog, I looked forward to writing about Pantone’s seasonal colors on the equinox, the first day of their respective season. My enjoyment came partly because you guys often had such lively opinions about the chosen colors, partly because I liked the challenge of planning a project in a “seasonal” color, and partly because I found it fun to see whether or not the colors really did end up being featured in ready-to-wear clothing lines.

Spring 2011 | Fall 2011 | Spring 2012 | Fall 2012 | Spring 2013 | Fall 2013

But, you’ll notice that I stopped posting about Pantone’s seasonal colors with the arrival of my daughter. I’ll be honest — I completely forgot all about Pantone and their seasonal colors in the fog that was new mommyhood. It wasn’t until a week or two ago that I stumbled upon them again. And, while my forgetting entirely about the existence of these colors would suggest that they really aren’t all that important to me, I still figured I’d go ahead and post this season’s colors for old time’s sake. We’re only just past the equinox after all, so I’m even almost on time.  Plus, I’m dying to hear your opinions again. And, coincidence would have it that I’ll be posting something in “Cashmere Rose” (aka pink – haha!) later this week.

Pantone calls Fall 2015 “an evolving color landscape.” They describe the ten top seasonal colors (shown above) as “earthy neutrals with a range of bold color statements”, which they say together “reflect a landscape of hope, fun, fantasy, and all things natural.” I almost feel like I’m at a wine tasting with a wannabe sommelier! Hmmm… Maybe that’s just the “Marsala” talking?!

As for suggested color combinations, Pantone says to “combine Desert Sage, Stormy Weather, and Oak Buff for a look inspired by the flora and fauna of Fall.” Or, “both men and women can weave Cadmium Orange and Cashmere Rose with Desert Sage for a bold mix of bright, earthy inspiration.”

Speaking of both men and women, I like that Pantone has not distinguished between female and male colors this season. All of the seasons I’d previously written about had a few color substitutions for men. Perhaps those substitutions really were reflective of the season, but it often felt like they were less about the color and more about the color’s name.  It was as if they were saying that men shouldn’t wear “Silver Cloud” when a nearly identical “Flint Gray” was available. Anyway, I’m glad to see that they’ve stuck with one set of colors this time around.

Okay, so my big question is — what do you think of these colors? I’ll admit that I’m curious to try them.  I tend to gravitate to brighter colors, but I’m starting to think softer colors like these are better for me.  If you like them, will you be sewing any of these colors this fall and winter?  If you live in the Southern Hemisphere, where it’s just starting to be spring, do you pay attention to these colors?

15 thoughts on “Sewing for the Season: Fall 2015 Pantone

  1. you know, i go with colors that are flattering to my skin color (teal for instance). orange came out years ago and i look awful in orange but it was ALL OVER the runways and it still is dribbling in. i am in love with the new RIT dye that is for use on polyester. i used some of them and they are stunning.
    congrats on the baby. mine are grown and how i miss being their mommy. enjoy every single second.

  2. I am fascinated that many of the fabrics I have pulled for fall sewing have these colors! I’ve already made a marsala dress (okay, that’s the color of the year…)

    But I also have out cuts that are close to or exact matches to:
    Cadmium (a rayon challis)
    Oak buff (a rayon blend shirting)
    Stormy weather (a ponte)
    Biscayne Bay (an ITY)
    and I saw a top at Target close to Dried Herb that I must have.

    I’m not a big fan of purple and I like the idea of cashmere rose. Would probably need to go either to a paler version or a more intense version.

  3. I would think these colors are expected, so fall like that my preschooler could have chosen them. However, I like the idea Pantone tries to do, in organizing colors. I don’t find anything unexpected or surprising in this selection, and I wish I did. I don’t mean to be harsh, but should fashion colors be so ordinary?

    1. Well, I want to take back what I said a little bit! I went back and looked at your other posts about the fall colors, and see that the problem I am having is that this year is the first year the colors match my wardrobe! So it is unexpected because I have been wearing these colors since high school. So I am sorry pantone, I was wrong. You are not unexpected. It’s just that this year is the first time for any season I already own colors in your “seasonal color way” – you aren’t totally standard and boring, but instead you look like the autumn trees around me, in food, in the trees, and on the people now too.

  4. I’ve apparently been making a coat in Amethyst Orchid without realizing it! I am also making a dress out of Biscay Bay corduroy. I think of Oak Buff as a classic fall color, and Stormy Weather and Reflecting Pond seem like classic colors in general. I really hate Dried Herb and Desert Sage. Those colors seem way outdated to me because I remember seeing a lot of them in the 90s, but I suppose the 90s are coming back around now! I was disappointed when Marsala was announced as the color of the year, and my opinion hasn’t changed since then. It also seems outdated to me, but I suppose I’m the one who’s outdated because I refuse to accept that the colors of my teenage years are back in style again!

  5. Can definitely say that we in the Southern hemisphere are VERY much looking forward to the return of colour!!! And if those are the colours to look forward to, I guess I better stock up on fabric now 😉 fare thee well, navy blue.

    (Should be stunning colours if you’re ash/fair skinned with ashy/blonde/grey hair).

  6. I like these colors and the reference to fall in Pantone’s advice. Is there a seventies influence in this pallet maybe? That’s what I’m seeing in RTW right now, lots of harvest gold and avocado green like seventies appliances :). I love sewing in the fall and welcome color of any kind in my wardrobe as the dull days of winter arrive!

  7. I’ll admit that fall sewing is not my fav, spring summer are more to my liking so I never get too excited about the fall patterns or colors. that said, these colors look kind of drab to me. I just bought some silk that is teal blue, maybe close to their Biscay bay but much more vibrant.

  8. I love these colors! They don’t look drab at all to me. They look rich, especially when combined with one another.

  9. Hi, Amy! Fall colors are fall colors. For my coloring, I need clearer colors, though I can wear the greens, and no pink or purples at all. And as above, I need my navy blue. Interestingly, I bought handbag a few months ago in orange!

  10. One of the problems I always have is that it is so hard to find the vibrancy in a color swatch on the screen! I find marsala lovely in person, but seriously blah on the monitor. Beyond that, though, most of these colors are things that I have a good collection of in my stash as they are colors I love and suit my skin tones. Well, maybe not Oak Bluff but there’s 3 yards of wool gabardine in that color hanging out in the stash anyway. I’m sure it is destined to be a skirt, so it can hang out as far from my face as possible and still be part of the wardrobe. 🙂

  11. I try to choose colours that complement my skin tone and they are usually warm and rich tones. Most of these colours are too cold and pale for me, which is something I usually associate with winter colourways. It will be interesting to see how these colours will be interpretated in Finnish RTW this fall.

  12. I’m not too into this palette, sadly… I prefer more vibrant, deeper colors. These all look sort of muddy to me. But they make sense for fall! It’s always interesting to see what Pantone selects! Thanks for posting!

  13. While I do love all these colors…I really need to wear what looks good on me. My mother is a great indicator of this for me…if she says that I look pale or washed out, I know that I’m wearing a color that doesn’t work. But like you, I always find Pantones choices interesting and try to make them work for me if I can.

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