By Rieva Lesonsky

Pantone, the international color experts, have proclaimed the color of the year—and for 2015 it’s Marsala, “a robust and earthy wine red.” The folks at Pantone say Marsala (named after a fortified Sicilian wine) is a “hearty, yet stylish tone [that’s] universally appealing and translates easily to fashion, beauty, industrial design, home furnishings and interiors.”

We’ve talked before about why color is so important to so many different types of businesses. Pantone says Marsala will be important to several industries, including:

  • Fashion. Equally appealing to men and women, Marsala is a stirring and flavorful shade for apparel and accessories, one that encourages color creativity and experimentation.
  • Beauty. Flattering against many skin tones, sultry and subtle Marsala is a great go-to color for beauty, providing strong highlight for the cheek, and a captivating pop of color for nails, eyes, lips and hair.
  • Home décor. Dramatic and at the same time grounding, the rich and full-bodied red-brown Marsala brings color warmth into home interiors.
  • Marketing. An earthy shade with a bit of sophistication, texture is the story in print and packaging.

The reddish-brown hue is certainly different than the brighter color-of-the-year shades from years past. I’m no design professional, but Marsala strikes me as more mature, more unisex and more luxurious than the bright blues and corals we saw just a few years ago.

On the other hand, paint manufacturer Kelly-Moore Paints surveyed interior designers, who declared Coastal Surf, a deep, dramatic and vibrant shade of blue, to be its 2015 Color of the Year.

Rieva Lesonsky is CEO of GrowBiz Media, a media and custom content company focusing on small business and entrepreneurship. Email Rieva at, follow her on Google+   and