Looking for a little inspiration to kick-start your new design year? Several color companies have announced their Colors of the Year, taking a marked departure from last year’s emerald, aloe, and yellow hues.

For 2014, both Sherwin-Williams (Cleveland) and Pantone LLC (Carlstadt, N.J.) have moved toward shades of purple, with the former choosing Exclusive Plum (SW 6263), described as a balance of cool blue and feisty red with a splash of gray. Pantone’s pick, Radiant Orchid, is brighter with undertones of fuchsia, purple, and pink.

Sherwin-Williams Exclusive Plum

“While the 2013 color of the year, Pantone 17-5641 Emerald, served as a symbol of growth, renewal, and prosperity, Radiant Orchid reaches across the color wheel to intrigue the eye and spark the imagination,” Leatrice Eiseman, executive director of the Pantone Color Institute, said in a release.

Benjamin Moore (Montvale, N.J.) offered another color option, named Breath of Fresh Air (color number 806), calling it the “new neutral.”

Surely there are other colors in the design landscape destined for popularity in the coming months, as well. As evidenced by the projects covered by Healthcare Design, facilities and designers are embracing the calming and therapeutic effects of color, bringing in healing hues to brighten up patient rooms, create calm settings for waiting family members, or enliven public spaces, such as cafeterias and even exterior façades.

During a recent tour of Mercy West Hospital (Cincinnati), I couldn’t help but notice the bright blue couches in the patient rooms and the vibrant orange chairs near the fireplace in the dining area.

It will be exciting to see if any of these new hues (or any other bold color combinations) makes a splash in the industry this year.

What favorite color are you planning to use on a project this year? Where do you get your inspiration? Share your thoughts below or send me some pictures at adinardo@vendomegrp.com.