Pantone’s 2018 Color of the Year: Ultra Violet

How to complement your event with the mysterious, bold hue

The favorite hue of noted architect Frank Lloyd Wright (he famously used to rock a cape in this color), composer Ditto Wagner and Minneapolis rock royalty Prince, purple is a particularly enigmatic, cosmic color. And from fuchsia to lavender, it comes in a multitude of shades––one of which was recently dubbed as Pantone’s 2018 Color of the Year: Ultra Violet

While in past years Pantone has picked shades that reflect the current state of the world (for example, 2017’s color, Greenery, was a symbol of new beginnings and vitality), this year, according to the site, the color is more forward-thinking: “Inventive and imaginative, Ultra Violet lights the way to what is yet to come.” And as an article from Very Well emphasizes, purple (and subsequently Ultra Violet) are colors not often found in nature, so we associate the hue with rarity and intrigue.  

As Pantone states, the color has direct ties to mindfulness, a mental health movement aimed at disconnecting that we’ve discussed at length here before. Ultra Violet, the site says, is associated with meditative spaces where communities can re-energize and inspire valuable connection––a goal most likely ingrained in many of your event planning efforts already. 

From decadent desserts to cosmic cocktails, here’s a bit of Ultra Violet inspiration for your next meeting. 

Light the Way

Although dark, mystical deep purple light gleaming throughout your event probably isn’t conducive to an idea-intensive Ideate or serious Decide meeting, showcasing lighting schemes with violet hues is perfect for a social Celebrate event. Alternatively, the light can be incredibly calming––perfect for group meditation sessions. 

Funky Florals

From soft, calming lavender notes to romantic and intoxicating wisteria, purple flowers are some of the most remarkable-smelling and mood-altering flowers. Arrange your favorite varieties into individual bouquets as centerpieces. 

Table Décor 

Although an event entirely decked out in Ultra Violet florals, table settings and lighting might be a bit intense (and reminiscent of a Prince concert circa 1985), there’s no reason why you can’t alternate its multitude of shades––lavender, light purple, fuchsia, grape, wine––into a single purple-themed table display. 

Cosmic Cocktails


Despite purple’s royal and cosmic association, there’s something inherently nostalgic about the color, from tinted cakes to Barney the Dinosaur, a favorite childhood figure. Give that youthful tie a fun adult spin by infusing cocktails with violet dyes. 

Purple People Eater

In that same nostalgic vein, transport attendees to their favorite childhood candy store by setting up interactive (and colored) chocolate dipping stations. Don’t be afraid to stock nearby dishes with other Ultra Violet-hued candies and treats, including Hershey’s Kisses in dark chocolate, purple M&M’s, grape gummy bears and purple rock candy.  

Decadent Desserts

As purple is a cool color, it doesn’t typically stimulate a person’s appetite––but can be an excellent color choice for a small sweet treat. Alternatively, if it’s a full cake or pie your culinary team wants to concoct, consider garnishing plainly colored desserts with deep purple floral accents, as seen here from the Copenhagen Marriott Hotel