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Daily Posts. Colorful Ideas & Inspirations.

Our team of writers brings you daily trend coverage, new products, inspiration, information and fun ideas. With an archive of more than 2,160 articles, you're sure to find something you love. Or if you have a great idea, let us know!

Hot New Car Colors from the 2008 NAIAS

Hot New Car Colors from the 2008 NAIAS


While the overall "color of the year" for the North American International Auto Show in Detroit may be "green", and for good reason, there are a few new colors, and the comeback of a few classic colors as well, that will soon be seen at your local parking lot or drive-thru line.

The auto industry is known for sticking to standard hues from year to year - which is still a big step compared to Mr.Fords 'one color for all' Model T, and his motto: “Any customer can have a car painted any color that he wants so long as it is black,” and while the general colors remain the same, it is the shades that are continually becoming more and more interesting every year.

Recently, the colors used on automobiles have been made up of multiple color layers added together with translucent layers making each color increasingly more complex. Look at a car from one angle the color might be "scorched penny" but as you move your point of view around the car the color moves along with you changing drastically from that bright orange to nearly black.

DuPont 2007 Global Automotive Color of the Year

white_audi_tt.jpg
img by ripismoney

After seven years in first place, silver ran into tough competition this year with white/white pearl rising to the lead color choice for vehicles in one key region and two countries. In North America, white/white pearl, silver and black/black effect are in a virtual tie for first, with white/white pearl narrowly taking the top spot, according to the report issued by the company’s Automotive Systems business. White overcame silver in Japan and is the decisive leader in Mexico, more than doubling the popularity of gray.
-DuPont Reports Global Color Popularity Ratings for Vehicles

So, while the car industry never strays too far from the popular colors, the growing 'niche' color market is something for a color lover to excited about. In recent years the niche market has seen bright saturated oranges and greens. Imagine what might come next, I'm hoping for patterns, but we will just have to wait and see.

Some of My Favorite Colors Popping Up at the NAIAS This Year

red lexus roadster
img by TheWongFamilyPictures

orange_dodge-zeo.jpg
img by ripismoney

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Vinyl Toys: Invasion of the Color Snatchers

Vinyl Toys: Invasion of the Color Snatchers


People that have been in love with toys have likely been in love with them for a long time. That is the heart of many of today's premier vinyl designers, which may be the reason for the bold statements they make in both design and color. For those of you unfamiliar with this popular trend, you may be startled to find what an intense source of color and beauty the designer vinyl toy universe can offer.

Vinyl Toys
img by delarge

Designer vinyl started to pop up around 1990. It was coming from radically different sources: Some designers were classically trained in art and design, while others were self taught. My own personal discovery of designer vinyl started with Toy2r's Qee bears, around 1997. The 2" bear shaped toy with Mickey Mouse ears quickly became a ubiquitous symbol of designer vinyl, not to mention a great inspiration for artists everywhere. By taking something as simple as a toy and projecting art onto it, a new creation was born -- a highly accessible art form to people of all ages and backgrounds.

vinyl and plush toys
img by Andy Woo

The look quickly caught on and spread to other forms of toy art. "Designer plush" was true to the same artistic ideals as designer vinyl, but made use of the medium to make its own unique statement. One of the most popular plush designers is Friends with You, a Miami based company that is heavily inspired by Miami's strong design aesthetic. These toys have also become highly collectible and much sought after, making it cool to have a shelf of "stuffed animals" in the house again.

group_shot_vinyl_toys.jpg
img by revlimit

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Free Advanced DHTML Color Picker

Free Advanced DHTML Color Picker


When we were developing COPASO, we found that we needed to have a more advanced color picker to work inside the application... and since COPASO is built with DHTML it was easy enough to pull out the picker to use on the other creation pages of our site. Once we'd modularized the color picker code it made sense to offer it to others to use on their own sites and projects. So here is the code to get our Color Picker working on your site for free. (We'll even host the files)

License: Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 3.0 Unported
If you have a need that doesn't fit the license above, contact us.

COLOURlovers Color Picker Demo

 

Here is the Code You Need & Examples...


Put this Code into Your HTML <head> Section:
<link rel="stylesheet" href="http://colourlovers.com.s3.amazonaws.com/COLOURloversColorPicker/COLOURloversColorPicker.css" type="text/css" media="all" />
<script type="text/JavaScript" src="http://colourlovers.com.s3.amazonaws.com/COLOURloversColorPicker/js/COLOURloversColorPicker.js"></script>
Put this Code into Your HTML <body> Section:
<div id="CLCP" class="CLCP"></div>
<script type="text/JavaScript">
_whichField = "hexValue_0";
CLCPHandler = function(_hex) {
// This function gets called by the picker when the sliders are being dragged. The variable _hex contains the current hex value from the picker
// This code serves as an example only, here we use it to do three things:
// Here we simply drop the variable _hex into the input field, so we can see what the hex value coming from the picker is:
document.getElementById(_whichField).value = _hex;
// Here is where we color the BG of a div to preview the color:
document.getElementById("CLCPUpdateDiv").style.background = ("#" + _hex);
// Giving you control over this function really puts the reigns in your hands. Rewrite this function as you see fit to really take control of this color picker.
}
// Settings:
_CLCPdisplay = "none"; // Values: "none", "block". Default "none"
_CLCPisDraggable = true; // Values: true, false. Default true
_CLCPposition = "absolute"; // Values: "absolute", "relative". Default "absolute"
_CLCPinitHex = "0039B3"; // Values: Any valid hex value. Default "ffffff"
CLCPinitPicker();
</script>

 

Picker Attached to a Single Text Field:

Show picker and load the color to the left

Single Text Field Example Code

<input name="YourInputName" id="hexValue_0" style="width: 100px;" maxlength="6" value="0000FF" />
<a href="JavaScript:_whichField='hexValue_0';CLCPshowPicker({_hex: document.getElementById('hexValue_0').value});">Show picker and load the color to the left</a>

 

Picker Attached to Multiple Text Fields:

Show picker at x=300, y=1400 and don't update it's color

Show picker at x=12, y=1400 and load the color to the left

Show picker and load the color to the left

Show picker at mouse click and don't update it's color

Show picker at mouse click and don't update it's color [Example with an image]


Multiple Text Field Example Code:


<input name="YourInputName" id="multipleHexValue_0" style="width: 100px;" maxlength="6" value="FFFFFF" />
<a href="JavaScript:_whichField='multipleHexValue_0';CLCPshowPicker({_x: 300,_y: 200});">Show picker at x=300, y=200 and don't update it's color</a>
<input name="YourInputName" id="multipleHexValue_1" style="width: 100px;" maxlength="6" value="18AB49" />
<a href="JavaScript:_whichField='multipleHexValue_1';CLCPshowPicker({_hex: document.getElementById('multipleHexValue_1').value,_x: 12,_y: 400});">Show picker at x=12, y=400 and load the color to the left</a>
<input name="YourInputName" id="multipleHexValue_2" style="width: 100px;" maxlength="6" value="FF0000" />
<a href="JavaScript:_whichField='multipleHexValue_2';CLCPshowPicker({_hex: document.getElementById('multipleHexValue_2').value});">Show picker and load the color to the left</a>
<input name="YourInputName" id="multipleHexValue_3" style="width: 100px;" maxlength="6" value="FFFFFF" />
<a href="JavaScript:_whichField='multipleHexValue_3';CLCPshowPicker();">Show picker at mouse click and don't update it's color</a>
<input name="YourInputName" id="multipleHexValue_4" style="width: 100px;" maxlength="6" value="000000" />
<img src="http://colourlovers.com.s3.amazonaws.com/images/v3/color_wheel.png" style="vertical-align: -20%; cursor: pointer;" onclick="_whichField = 'multipleHexValue_4'; CLCPshowPicker();" alt="Show picker at mouse click and don't update it's color" title="Show picker at mouse click and don't update it's color" /> [Example with an image]

 

Here is a break down of the object passed to CLCPshowPicker()


{
_hex: "FF4400", // When a valid hex value is passed, it will set the picker to this hex. Otherwise the picker will not change it's current color [if any].
_x: 12, // If a x coordinate is passed, the picker will move to the x value. Otherwise, the x coordinate from the mouse click will be used.
_y: 400 // If a y coordinate is passed, the picker will move to the y value. Otherwise, the y coordinate from the mouse click will be used.
// All of these variables are optional
}

 

Feb. 24, 2008 - Update
Fixed a bug in IE where users couldn't click-drag-highlight other objects within the page.

May 1, 2008 - Update
Fixed a conflict this script had with jQuery. Thanks to Ozh at planetOzh.com for the report!

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COPASO : Color Palette Software

COPASO : Color Palette Software


We've been working on an advanced / pro color palette tool for quite some time and finally have it ready enough to share with you. We're still fine tuning and adding more updates... but we feel like this is the best color palette tool you'll find... if you don't think so, let us know what you'd like us to add or improve and we'll keep striving to give you the best experience anywhere.

Try COPASO : Color Palette Software Now

Click Here for a Larger Video Demo (Narrated and presented by Andrew Sorcini)

COPASO is an advanced color palette tool that helps you create the perfect color schemes and themes. With a scratch pad to save colors you're working with, a photo tool to extract colors and an advanced color picker and color theory wheel to give you tons of color inspiration. Using COPASO you can save your palettes to a private folder or download them to keep on your local computer. When you're ready, click publish and share your color palette with thousands of other color enthusiasts. If you're finding COPASO a bit too rich you're your color creating tastes, you can always use our basic color palette tool.
 
 

Custom Color Widths... Base, Secondary and Accent

 

With COPASO you can give each color a specific amount of space in your color palettes. This will help you show what colors you intend to be the base colors, secondary and accent colors. Click and drag the <|> icons above the color squares to change their widths.

 

 

Save Colors to Your Scratch Pad

 

You can save a color you're working with by clicking and dragging it down to the scratch area. To set a main color above with one of the colors in your scratch, simply double-click the color in your scratch.

 

 

Get Color Inspiration from Pictures

 

Advanced Color Picker and Color Wheel

The new advanced color picker in COPASO allows for even more precise color selection. You have hue, saturation and brightness sliders as well as input areas for Hex, RGB, HSV and CMYK color values.

Also built into the advanced color picker are gradient step filters that will allow you to see any color with steps towards white or with steps towards black. To work with any of the colors in this filter, simply click and drag the filter color strip to the right of the color wheel onto your scratch area.

Below the picker is our color wheel and color formula filters. By selecting one of the formula filters (Blend, Complementary, Triadic Tetradic or Split Complementary) the color wheel will allow you to spin the selected color around by clicking anywhere on the wheel. Once you've found some great colors in the preview bar on the right, all you need to do is drag the bar to your scratch area to begin using those colors.

Double-clicking any of the color squares in the preview bar will update the main color picker to that color and give you a new perspective on your selected color filters.

 

As mentioned above, we're very proud of COPASO and hope you'll find it very useful for all your professional and hobby color projects. COPASO couldn't have been built without the expert programming of Chris Williams and the design work of Stephen Hallgren. Last but not least the hundreds of thousands of COLOURlovers who have helped us build and grow our color community and who've provided us with great advice, suggestions and inspiration over the years.

Happy COLOURloving!

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Color and Typography in Good Design

Color and Typography in Good Design


Typography is a significant issue for designers. On many projects, finding just the right font, size, spacing, etc. can require considerable time and attention. In addition to typography, color is also a major factor in the success of the design. What is sometimes overlooked is the combination of color and typography and the effect that it has on the overall project.

Font Size, Line Height & Contrast

Before we even get to the color and contrast elements of typography, we first should look at how dramatic a small font increase and line height increase can improve readability and reduce eye fatigue. The first example below uses 11pt font with matching 11pt line height. The second example uses 12pt font with 13pt line height. Example two is significantly easier to read.

Example 1: (11pt Font, 11pt Line Height)
The next moment a hideous, grinding speech, as of some monstrous machine running without oil, burst from the big telescreen at the end of the room. It was a noise that set one's teeth on edge and bristled the hair at the back of one's neck. The Hate had started.

(12pt Font, 13pt Line Height)
The next moment a hideous, grinding speech, as of some monstrous machine running without oil, burst from the big telescreen at the end of the room. It was a noise that set one's teeth on edge and bristled the hair at the back of one's neck. The Hate had started.

Even with well sized type and line heights, choosing a font color and background color with low contrast can make reading difficult and stresses the eyes of the reader.

(12pt Font, 13pt Line Height - Low Contrast)
The hallway smelt of boiled cabbage and old rag mats. At one end of it a coloured poster, too large for indoor display, had been tacked to the wall. It depicted simply an enormous face, more than a metre wide: the face of a man of about forty-five, with a heavy black moustache and ruggedly handsome features. Winston made for the stairs. It was no use trying the lift. Even at the best of times it was seldom working, and at present the electric current was cut off during daylight hours.

More Bad Contrast Examples:

Example 2: (12pt Font, 13pt Line Height - Low Contrast)
The hallway smelt of boiled cabbage and old rag mats. At one end of it a coloured poster, too large for indoor display, had been tacked to the wall. It depicted simply an enormous face, more than a metre wide: the face of a man of about forty-five, with a heavy black moustache and ruggedly handsome features. Winston made for the stairs. It was no use trying the lift. Even at the best of times it was seldom working, and at present the electric current was cut off during daylight hours.

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Find Color Synonyms with the HP Color Thesaurus

Find Color Synonyms with the HP Color Thesaurus


HP has been doing some very cool things around color lately. One thing I recently stumbled onto is their Color Thesaurus. You enter in a color name and it gives you 4 similar named colors and 4 opposite colors. I used the tool to create the basic color wheel info below, but dive in and find out what colors are similar to Rose, Grass, Aqua, Ivory, etc.

Red

This is Red

Synonyms
Rouge
Ruby Red
Cherry
Crimson Red

Orange

This is Orange

Synonyms
Tangerine
Orange Juice
Pumpkin Pie
Burnt Orange

Yellow

This is Yellow

Synonyms
Dirty Yellow
Canary
Greenish Yellow
Mustard Yellow

Green

This is Green

Synonyms
Kelly
Grass
Emerald
Algae

Blue

This is Blue

Synonyms
Dutch Blue
Ocean
Sky Blue
Azure

Violet

This is Blue

Synonyms
Purple
Grape
Plum
Aubergine

The HP On-Line Color Thesaurus

The results that are returned are a large color square with a rendering of the color if it was found. If the name was not found, for example “greeb” was entered, then the next nearest color name in terms of edit distance, in this case “green”, will be returned. So no you won’t have to remember how to spell fuchsia. In addition to the colored square are the corresponding RGB and hexidecimal values. Finally there is a note about how common the color name is. Below this are the color synonyms and antonyms. Each column has smaller color squares rendering the color names and the names with links so that you can easily click-through to these names. The results are based on analysis of 20,000+ color name database in English collected from a 20+ language ongoing online color naming experiment.

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Color Palettes in Adobe Swatch Exchange (.ase)

Color Palettes in Adobe Swatch Exchange (.ase)


Almost all of us use Adobe products in our professional and hobby design lives, but the new release of CS3 made it very hard for developers and websites like ours to allow users to get their palettes into the CS3 suite of products. CS3 uses a new format for storing color palettes aka schemes / swatches and Adobe kept their .ase file format a secret so that only Adobe Kuler could export to this format... Well, we're not very good about NOT sharing the color love... so Chris our skilled code engineer poured over all the specifications and documentation on the file format to figure out how to share that .ase love with everybody.

The Adobe Swatch Exchange (.ase) File Format - Source Code

For any other color lovers, developers or creative individuals who would like their applications and websites to be able to spit out .ase color palettes...

Here is the .ASE Source Code we are using.
 

Downloading .ase Color Palettes from COLOURlovers

COLOURlovers has over 200,000 user created palettes with more than 25,000 being added monthly. Not only is the community a creative and fun place to share color ideas... those ideas can be used in several professional design programs.
 

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AI CS3 + Flickr + In The Mod Mashup

AI CS3 + Flickr + In The Mod Mashup


What do you get when Dr. Woohoo mashes up Adobe Illustrator CS3, Flickr and In The Mod: Color Analytics? A free swf Panel that runs inside AI CS3 that allows you to search Flickr & In The Mod, view the colors from each image or painting you select and then save them directly to the Swatches Panel in AI.
 

Adobe Illustrator CS3 + Flickr + In The Mod mash-up from dr woohoo.

Inspiration
The inspiration for the Flickr integration comes from a variety of sources – watching what Mario and Marcos did with Kelvin’s Flashr; looking at the photographs of the Ronin, Annie Liebowitz and Rebekka Guðleifsdóttir; and of course the colors we see all around us – in the orchids and the sunsets – whose combinations are simply perfect.

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Great for Color, Your Home & The Earth: FLOR

Great for Color, Your Home & The Earth: FLOR


Today we're joining over 14,000 other blogs for Blog Action Day's conversation about the environment. Being conscious of the issues facing our planet and being proactive about lessening your impact doesn't have to be a plain or painful experience. FLOR is a company that is bringing lots of color and style to the home, and doing it with a planet friendly mission. Their customizable floor coverings make adding color to your personal space and helping the earth super easy.

FLOR makes a modular carpet tile in tons of styles, making it easy to create a custom rug of any site or run it wall to wall in any mix of colors or patterns. No Gluey-Goo, No Professional Carpet Layers... These are DIY and easy. (I look forward to making a palette of color on my office floor when the remodel is done.)

FLOR Color Options

At FLOR, we're really proud of who we are. From our great designs, to the functionality and versatility of our product, we think FLOR is pretty cool. But more than that, we're proud of what we stand for: Mission Zero™. Our environmental position, launched 12 years ago by our parent company, Interface, Inc., seeks to eliminate any negative impact our family of companies has on the environment by 2020.

We believe it's not just about what a product is made of, it's about how it's made. In the last 12 years, we have reduced manufacturing waste sent to landfills by 63% and our absolute greenhouse gas emissions by 56% worldwide. FLOR products bring a piece of Mission Zero into your home.

FLOR has an R&R™ program (Return-Recycle) that allows customers to share the responsibility of living green with FLOR. If you're ready to get rid of existing FLOR to make room for new FLOR in your home, contact us. We'll arrange for your used carpet tiles to be picked up and shipped back to our mill, where the old tiles will be recycled into new product.
FLOR is eco-friendly »

DYI Flooring for Color Lovers

FLOR modular tiles come in a variety of colors, patterns and styles. Included below are some examples of the color variety... you can Browse by Color to see all the options.

FLOR Carpet Colors
 
 
 
Blog Action Day

We're supporting our good friends over at BlogActionDay.org, an annual event where bloggers unite to bring some attention to a single important issue. This year the topic is the Environment and over 14,000 blogs will reach over 12 million readers.

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Sony Bravia Multiplies Like Colorful Rabbits

Sony Bravia Multiplies Like Colorful Rabbits


I'm sure most color lovers have seen the memorable Sony Bravia Advert where paint cannons were used to brilliantly color an apartment complex. Well, now they're back with a new commercial using a combination of stop motion, radiant colors, and claymation.

Going to the site begins with tag lines about the effects colors in our lives, one of which is the use of red, orange, and yellow to entices appetite and how the use of pink in bubble gum when it was first invented -- which later became the standard -- was only pink because it was the only color the creator of bubble gum had.

sony bravia play-doh bunnies

Joining up with Hasbro, the company that owns and distributes Play-Doh, this new commercial with the slogan 'Colour Like No Other' for their LCD line hops to life in New York City.

Playing with Play-Doh

play-doh 50th anniversary colour pack   

Play-Doh was invented by Noah and Joseph McVicker in 1956 and awarded U.S. Patent 3,167,440 in 1965. One of many common products invented by accident, it was meant as a wallpaper cleaner. It was marketed by toy manufacturer Rainbow Crafts, and first sold at the Woodward & Lothrop department store in Washington, D.C. Seen here is its 50th Anniversary Collection, showcasing fifty of the colors available today.

Play-Doh is available in several different colors from day-glo to primary and sizes, and has a distinctive smell and texture. Over 900 million pounds have been sold so far. The product is now owned by American toy giant Hasbro.

strip of play-doh colours
Play With Color Flexible Fun

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