Pantone Inc. is a U.S. corporation headquartered in Carlstadt, New
Jersey. The company is best known for its
Pantone Matching System
(PMS), a proprietary color space used in a variety of industries,
primarily printing, though sometimes in the manufacture of colored
paint, fabric, and plastics.
X-Rite Inc., a supplier of color measurement instruments and software,
Pantone Inc. for $180 million in October 2007.
Color Matching System
Pantone Goe System
4 Other products
Color of the Year
6 Intellectual property
7 See also
9 External links
Pantone began in New York City in the 1950s as the commercial printing
company of M & J Levine Advertising. In 1956, its founders,
advertising executives brothers Mervin and Jesse Levine, hired recent
Hofstra University graduate Lawrence Herbert as a part-time employee.
Herbert used his chemistry knowledge to systematize and simplify the
company's stock of pigments and production of colored inks; by 1962,
Herbert was running the ink and printing division at a profit, while
the commercial-display division was $50,000 in debt; he subsequently
purchased the company's technological assets from the Levine Brothers
for $90,000 (equivalent to $5,740,000 in 2017) and renamed them
The company's primary products include the
Pantone Guides, which
consist of a large number of small (approximately 6×2 inches or
15×5 cm) thin cardboard sheets, printed on one side with a
series of related color swatches and then bound into a small "fan
deck". For instance, a particular "page" might contain a number of
yellows of varying tints.
The idea behind the PMS is to allow designers to "color match"
specific colors when a design enters production stage, regardless of
the equipment used to produce the color. This system has been widely
adopted by graphic designers and reproduction and printing houses.
Pantone recommends that PMS
Color Guides be purchased annually, as
their inks become yellowish over time.
Color variance also occurs
within editions based on the paper stock used (coated, matte or
uncoated), while interedition color variance occurs when there are
changes to the specific paper stock used.
Color Matching System
Pantone Colors from Orange to Red
Pantone Colors from
Yellow to Orange
Color Matching System is largely a standardized color
reproduction system. By standardizing the colors, different
manufacturers in different locations can all refer to the Pantone
system to make sure colors match without direct contact with one
One such use is standardizing colors in the
CMYK process. The CMYK
process is a method of printing color by using four inks—cyan,
magenta, yellow, and black. A majority of the world's printed material
is produced using the
CMYK process, and there is a special subset of
Pantone colors that can be reproduced using CMYK.
Those that are possible to simulate through the
CMYK process are
labeled as such within the company's guides.
However, most of the
Pantone system's 1,114 spot colors cannot be
CMYK but with 13 base pigments (14 including black)
mixed in specified amounts.
A logo commissioned by the
Government of Singapore
Government of Singapore to celebrate the
50th anniversary of the nation's independence. The usage instructions
for the logo described it as being in
Red 032 and White.
Pantone system also allows for many special colors to be produced,
such as metallics and fluorescents. While most of the
colors are beyond the printed
CMYK gamut, it was only in 2001 that
Pantone began providing translations of their existing system with
screen-based colors. Screen-based colors use the RGB color
model—red, green, blue—system to create various colors. The
(discontinued) Goe system has RGB and LAB values with each color.
Pantone colors are described by their allocated number (typically
referred to as, for example, "PMS 130"). PMS colors are almost always
used in branding and have even found their way into government
legislation and military standards (to describe the colors of flags
and seals). In January 2003, the
Scottish Parliament debated a
petition (reference PE512) to refer to the blue in the Scottish flag
Pantone 300". Countries such as Canada and South Korea and
organizations such as the FIA have also chosen to refer to specific
Pantone colors to use when producing flags. US states including Texas
have set legislated PMS colors of their flags. It has also been
used in an art project by the Brazilian photographer Angelica Dass
Pantone to the human skin color spectrum.
Pantone Goe System
On September 5, 2007,
Pantone introduced the Goe System. Goe
consisted of over 2,000 new colors in a new matching and numbering
system. In addition to the standard swatch books (now called the
GoeGuide), the new system also included adhesive-backed GoeSticks,
interactive software, tools, and an online community where users were
able to share color swatches and information.
The Goe system was streamlined to use fewer base colors (ten, plus
clear coating for reflections) and accommodate many technical
challenges in reproducing colors on a press.
Pantone Goe system was discontinued in November 2013.
In mid-2006 Pantone, partnering with Vermont-based Fine Paints of
Europe, introduced a new line of interior and exterior paints. The
color palette uses Pantone's color research and trending and has more
than 3,000 colors. In November 2015,
Pantone partnered with Redland
London to create a collection of bags inspired from Pantone's
authority on color.
Pantone also produced Hexachrome, a patented six-color printing
system. In addition to custom
orange and green inks to expand the color gamut, for better color
reproduction. It was therefore also known as a CMYKOG process.
Hexachrome was discontinued by
Pantone in 2008 when Adobe Systems
stopped supporting their HexWare plugin software.
Color of the Year
Since 2000, the
Color Institute declares a particular
Color of the Year". Twice a year the company hosts, in a
European capital, a secret meeting of representatives from various
nations' color standards groups. After two days of presentations and
debate, they choose a color for the following year; for example, the
color for summer 2013 was chosen in London in the spring of 2012.
The color purportedly connects with the zeitgeist;
for example, the press release declaring Honeysuckle the color of 2011
said "In times of stress, we need something to lift our spirits.
Honeysuckle is a captivating, stimulating color that gets the
adrenaline going – perfect to ward off the blues." The
results of the meeting are published in
Pantone View ($750), which
fashion designers, florists, and many other consumer-oriented
companies purchase to help guide their designs and planning for future
In 2012, the color of the year, Tangerine Tango, was used to create a
makeup line, in partnership with Sephora. The product line, named
Pantone Universe collection, features Tangerine
Tango–embellished false lashes; nail lacquers, cream, glitters, and
high-pigment lip glosses.
The person behind Pantone's
Color of the Year, Executive Director of
Color Institute Leatrice Eiseman, explains in an interview
Color of the Year, Radiant Orchid, was chosen:
I look for ascending color trends, colors that are being used in
broader ways and broader context than before... In this case, Radiant
Orchid descends from the purple family, which is kind of a magical
color that denotes creativity and innovation.
Purple is just that kind
of a complex, interesting, attracting kind of color... [The]
back-story to purple is that it inspires confidence in your
creativity, and we're living in a world where that kind of creative
innovation is greatly admired. In the world of color, purple is an
attention-getter, and it has a meaning. It speaks to people, and we
felt that it was time for the purple family to be celebrated. That's
why we chose the particular shade called Radiant Orchid.
— Leatrice Eiseman
Pantone has said that color "has always been an integral part of how a
culture expresses the attitudes and emotions of the times."
Pantone asserts that their lists of color numbers and pigment values
are the intellectual property of
Pantone and free use of the list is
not allowed. This is frequently held as a reason
cannot be supported in open-source software and are not often found in
low-cost proprietary software.
Pantone has been accused of "being
intentionally unclear" about its exact legal claims, but it is
acknowledged that "the simplest claim would be trademark
misappropriation or dilution towards someone who produced a color
palette marketed as compatible with Pantone's".
supplied by printer manufacturers can be obtained freely, and usually
do not come with usage restrictions beyond a sales ban on hard copies
of the palette.
Color chart – other color systems and charts
CMYK color model
Natural Color System
Natural Color System (NCS), Munsell color system, and other
proprietary color spaces where most consumers use swatches to make
color decisions; unlike Pantone, these systems are based on underlying
color models rather than pigment mixtures.
RAL colour standard
Sui generis database right – copyright protection of databases
^ Horyn, Cathy. "Pantone's
Color of the Year Is...", The New York
Times, December 20, 2007. Accessed September 8, 2008. "Nonetheless,
Pantone's choice of blue iris, or No. 18-3943, got some news media
attention last week, which seemed to be partly the objective of the
company, which is based in Carlstadt, NJ."
Pantone US$180m Acquisition Completion For X-Rite: News from
X-Rite", Printing talk [permanent dead link].
Pantone Inc. History", Company histories, Funding universe .
^ Senior Staff (interview),
Ink Systems, Inc, October 27, 2006 .
Pantone Press Release, 6 May 2004". Archived from the original on
2013-01-31. Retrieved 2007-02-23. Colors in the new formula guide and
chips books have changed due to a shift to coated paper that is
brighter and whiter .
^ a b
Pantone 2.0: After 45 Years, the Sequel to PMS, Creative
^ Celebrating the Little
Red Dot, SG50 Programme Office, 2015,
archived from the original on 18 March 2015 .
Pantone announces RGB conversions for
Pantone system (press
release), Providing Designers with simple and accurate methods for
Pantone Matching System colors in Web designs .
^ a b "Graphics -
Pantone Goe System". www.pantone.com. Pantone.
^ Directive (PDF), USCG .
^ "3100. State Flag", Statute, TX, US, archived from the original on
2007-10-13, (b) The red and blue of the state flag are (1) the same
colors used in the United States flag; and (2) defined as numbers 193
(red) and 281 (dark blue) of the
Pantone Matching System .
^ "Angélica Dass", About me .
Pantone skin color spectrum", Design boom .
^ Humanæ, Tumblr .
Pantone Unveils Goe System (press release), retrieved September 5,
2007, Over 2,000 new
Pantone colors to inspire, explore and express
the color of ideas .
^ Patent, US: PTO, 5734800 .
^ About us (press release), Pantone .
^ PANTONE. "Trend Forecasting - Celebrate Color:
Color by Decade
Infographic from Pantone.com". PANTONE. Retrieved 2017-08-17.
^ a b Vanderbilt 2012.
Color of the Year for 2011:
Color of the Year". Pantone.
^ "Radiant Orchid –
Color of the Year 2014". Pantone.
^ "Marsala –
Color of the Year 2015". Pantone.
^ a b "
Color of the Year 2016
Color Standards". Pantone.
Color of the Year 2017
Color Standards". Pantone.
Color of the Year 2018 Tools for Designers". Pantone.
^ Hutchings, Emma (2012-03-23). "
Pantone Teams Up With
Create A Color-Saturated Makeup Line". PSFK. Retrieved March 23,
^ Sragovic, Ana (2012-03-21). "Orange Crush:
Up for an NYC Pop-Up Shop". Vogue. Retrieved March 23, 2012.
^ Eiseman, Leatrice. "Lee Eiseman, Executive Director,
Institute". Spotlight. Signazon. Retrieved 24 January 2014.
^ "Celebrate Color". pantone.com. Panton. Retrieved 7 December
of Pantone, are protected by copyright laws and include, for example,
graphic presentations, color references,
Pantone Colors, Pantone
Names, numbers, formulas, and software .
^ a b "
Pantone and free software". Linux.com The source for Linux
information. Retrieved 2017-08-17.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Pantone.
Vanderbilt, Tom (2012-04-27), "Sneaking Into
Pantone HQ", Slate,
retrieved April 29, 2012
PANTONE kleurenoverzicht (www.pantone-colours.com)
List of color spaces
RGB color space
Colour Index International
CI list of dyes
Federal Standard 595
For the vision capacities of organisms or machines, see Color
On Vision and Colors
Spectral power distribution
Lüscher color test
Tertiary color (intermediate)
Aggressive color (warm)
Receding color (cool)
Achromatic colors (Neutral)
Tinctures in heraldry
Color analysis (art)
Color realism (art style)
Linguistic relativity and the color naming debate
Blue–green distinction in language
Color in Chinese culture
Traditional colors of Japan
Human skin color
Colorfulness (chroma and saturation)
Tints and shades
Lightness (tone and value)
Color Marketing Group
Color Association of the United States
International Colour Authority
International Commission on Illumination
International Commission on Illumination (CIE)
International Colour Association
List of colors: A–F
List of colors: G–M
List of colors: N–Z
List of colors
List of colors (compact)
List of colors
List of colors by shade
List of color palettes
List of color spaces
List of Crayola crayon colors
List of fictional colors
List of RAL colors
List of web colors
Multi-primary color display
Local color (visual art)
Index of colo