How to Incorporate Pantone’s 2021 Color Picks By Shopping Local

Shop local to get in the shade.

Twice a year, tastemakers affiliated with the Pantone Color Institute hold a clandestine meeting somewhere in Europe, like a cabal of criminal masterminds with a design-savvy bent.

They aren’t plotting any heists or assassination attempts, though. They’re debating which Pantone color best encapsulates the current zeitgeist. Eventually they emerge from their secret conferences and announce their verdict.

For 2021, they picked two colors: “Ultimate Gray” and “Illuminating,” a bright yellow. We love each shade – both individually and together – and can’t wait to beautify our homes with soothing gray and peppy yellow products that we’ve scooped up from local stores.



1. Aged Gray Finish Wall Mirror

KOHL’S | $246

Photo courtesy of Kohl’s

2. Lemon Fresh Wallpaper

CHASING PAPER | $40-$120

Photo courtesy of Chasing Paper


3. Reros Tweed Brostein Wool Blanket


Photo courtesy of Olson House

4. Tissue Box Cover, Large


Photo courtesy of Commonplace

5. Spencer Sofa


Photo courtesy of Cream City Restoration

6. Noodle Candle Holder, Double


Photo courtesy of Janelle Gramling

7. Surya Floor Coverings Sundaze 8′ Round Rug


Photo courtesy of Penny Mustard


This story is part of Milwaukee Magazine‘s February issue.

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Lindsey Anderson covers culture for Milwaukee Magazine. Before joining the MilMag team she worked as an editor at the Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago and wrote freelance articles for ArtSlant and Eater.