Color Combinations for Spring

By Sharon Mosley

March 15, 2016 5 min read

Time to color your fashion world just in time for spring and summer. In menswear and womenswear, the colors this year are gender neutral. There are no "real distinctions in color choices between men's collections and women's collections," proclaims the fashion color authority, Pantone. This unisex palette mixes it all up with hues in vivid brights and soothing pastels. Here are some ways anyone can add some colorful excitement to a warm weather wardrobe.

Rose Quartz is making "big" color news for spring, even beating out a close second favorite "Snorkel Blue" in Pantone's online popularity poll. This soothing blush pink is easy for just about anyone to wear, flattering to most skin tones and easy to pair with neutrals like white. But this spring, the petal pink can be your newest neutral. Tone down the sweetness by pairing rosy separates with graphic striped T-shirts and sweaters.

Orange is another way to squeeze out spring's freshest color picks. This spring, the tangy color shows up shades ranging from pale peach to burnt sunset hues. For even more oomph, try wearing orange in a fiery red tone — the ultimate power color and the ultimate power suit. To cool it all down a notch or two, team this brilliant color with a tailored lavender shirt.

Yellow is another spring favorite this year. Pantone calls its mellow yellow "Buttercup." The lemony shade that conjures up one of the season's classic flowers is a fresh pick for the party dress circuit. Think garden parties, wedding events and outdoor cocktails.

But shades of yellow also bloom in more masculine silhouettes like menswear suits, blazers and trousers, too. Try one of these spring designs in a vivid taxi-cab yellow or accent any of your outfits with a zingy pair of yellow slide sandals, cross-body bag or cuff bracelet. No yellow lipstick, please!

And what is one of the best colors to add to all that cheerful yellow? How about a soothing shade of blue? "Serenity Blue" is Pantone's answer to the popular spring color in robin's egg hues. But this blue has been a favorite ever since designers discovered the softer side of denim in chambray. These cool blues are great to use as neutrals that mix and match with darker florals or bright whites. They will also lighten up any of those black winter basics to transition into warmer weather.

The darker sea blues are also washing into our spring wardrobes in huge waves. Imagine you're at the beach gazing out over the ocean where layers of blue and green ebb and flow. Then think about putting all these colors into your wardrobe ... all in the same outfit.

The aquas of last year are fishing for compliments in inky marine blues that make a big splash when paired with the darker depths of navy. If you are a fan of the navy suit, then change it up for work with a new ocean-blue shirt and matching tie. Blue gingham is another great way to add this new blue hue to working wardrobes.

And when you get back down to earth, the grassy greens may be your best bet this spring. The mossy hues are perfect when paired with the watery blues, but they can also stand on their own. The same goes for a fresh taste of mint green. Team these greens with any of the other cool shades of the season — blush pink, lemon yellow or pale peach — and you've got a colorful combination that will see you off to the office or off to the shore and to a new season with new beginnings.

 The blues have it this spring. Combine light and dark blues like this jacket and shirt from Banana Republic.
The blues have it this spring. Combine light and dark blues like this jacket and shirt from Banana Republic.

To find out more about Sharon Mosley, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at

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