Ultra Violet Food? This Striking Design Trend Is Everywhere

Ever since color trendsetters at the Pantone Color Institute have crowned ultra violet, an uninhibited blue-based purple shade, as the color of 2018 — all we see is purple.

Let’s delve into how this shade and related hues have been translated into our lives via fashion trends, broader visuals and even what we bite into.

The Violet catwalk

Spring and fall 2018 fashion collections from Kenzo, Fendi, Gucci, Marni, Preen, Balenciaga, Tom Ford and many other designers are bathed in vivid purple hues while futuristic metallic textiles beam violet glare from fashion week catwalks.

This passion has spilled over into accessories, cosmetics and hairstyling, with 2018 trends such as sock boots, glitter makeup, and trending vivid hair shades that products like Elumen (well-reviewed hair colorants promising intensive illumination) offer fashionistas, all proudly purple-friendly.

Purple by design

Unsurprisingly, this shade is trending on Instagram and other online platforms for showcasing artistic interpretations on groups like #ultravioletart.

Saatchi Art has curated 48 new pieces from international artists in their online gallery to create a Pantone 2018 Color of the Year Collection. Artworks titled Astro Violet or Night Sea 2 went on sale in January 2018, and the collection showcases works embodying the spirit of Ultra Violet by artists working in painting, sculpture and printmaking. It includes a Prince print in the singer’s signature color (purple, naturally) by US artist Angie Jones.

With thanks to Saatchi Art

The revived interest in retro-futuristic and other-worldly themes is often attributed to their role as stand-ins for spiritual authority. Take the foxy icon of Enlight Photofox, an artistic photo editing app on iOS (full disclosure: made by us — Lightricks!). Our creatives see the violet shades of the app’s branding as creativity drivers and highlight their potency in filters and other tools: The mystic fox in our logos is a vibrant ultra violet shade. Actually, we use this shade sparingly in the app’s overall UI, as it’s so powerful.” That’s a direct quote from Amit, who leads the Photofox app team.

But why purple? “Ultra violet and purples inspire specific feelings” believes Yael, a designer on Team Photofox. Lighter shades are dreamy, deeper ones evoke a feeling of mystery and darkness.”

Ultra violet food is…appetizing?

It’s not long since blue-tinged food was considered unpalatable, a culinary taboo. But have you noticed how violet has been creeping onto our plates too?

Image via @theboroughbred

It’s everywhere — the first new marshmallow addition to the sugary-sweet Lucky Charms cereal in a decade, will be a purple-streaked unicorn, hitting shelves in March 2018.

Perhaps the public empathy with the shade is the reason for the sprouting presence of purple in novel produce varieties such as Molokai sweet potato, the new Asian Bluemoon radish and the Filipino Ube purple yam, which turns sweet dishes a synthetic-looking ultra violet. These join more established dark-hued corn and tomato varieties or dishes like purple gnocchi and acai bowls which are newly mainstream, and appearing at family mealtimes and in conventional restaurants.

Don’t be a shrinking violet! Let these inspiring shades into your design and your life.




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