IFS Color Trends 2016

At IFS we work with color every day. So as well as the 55,000 colors that are in our color database that we have worked with and matched, we see what's new, what's happening and the special effects that are popular.

Every year, after a lot of research, discussion and consultation with those in the know, we put together our trend collection. We identify the trends we see happening in society at large, and from those trends, the colors flow.

This year we have 5 trends:

  • Looking back, moving forward
  • Health to happiness
  • Eye to mouth
  • Power of play
  • What is too much?

Each color palette is made up of a selection of colors and effects that have been carefully chosen to represent each of the 5 trends. This year sees a return of shades from the warmer end of the color wheel and some beautiful special effects that add depth and interest to some of the hues.

This trend stems from previous ideas of wanting to understand what we consume and where it comes (Emotional reassurance, 2014) and the way we are working together and building on older models of doing business such as bartering and sharing (Subtle Shifts 2015) into our everyday lives. It’s built around the concept that we have a huge appreciation of the past and that as these previous trends have shown, we value more and more what we had before, so we look to build it into our current lives. Understanding the past enables us to move forward. Though we sometimes yearn for the past, our memories of it are actually distorted and what we are really remembering is the emotional significance we placed on that memory. Just as companies and brands want to create an emotional connection with us to improve buying probability they also want to demonstrate their past to strengthen this connection and use it to shape their future.

The colors and effects in this trend are a collection of rich, muted, pigmented colors from a warm gold to a rich purple with deep, inviting berry colors rounding off the palette. Warm, friendly and tried and tested, these gorgeous shades are inspired by the past and  handcrafted products and materials. They work well together or alone and can be equally viewed as contemporary!

aged bronze Ruby red Wrought iron Mayo purple JMC Silver gold champagne rose

Aged Bronze     Ruby Red        Wrought Iron     Mayo Purple     JMC Silver Gold   Champagne Rose

black marsala pearlpink NA Rust II Antique brass mediumbronze rustic brown

Black Marsala   Pearl Pink         N Aspire Rust II  Antique Brass   Medium Bronze  Rustic brown

Please note that colors represented on screen may not be a true representation. For example, in this case, bronze looks more grey and other colors are altered. The best way to see these colors is to get your own set of panels. Order your color samples today.

Color codes are below:

  • Aged Bronze  PLRS 92770PB
  • Ruby Red PLMF 60739PB
  • Wrought Iron SLRL 93964PB
  • Mayo Purple PLRS 93949PB
  • JMC Silver Gold PRRS 90662PB
  • Champagne Rose PRMF 92808PB
  • Black Marsala PRSF 95885PB
  • Pearl Pink PLMF 93576PB
  • New Aspire Rust II PRFL 40748PB
  • Antique Brass PRMS 90675PB
  • Medium Bronze PRSS 40786PT
  • Rustic Brown PRBL 92434PB



This trend looks at how we now fully comprehend the links between health and happiness and how we are even moving it from fitness and nutrition to balancing the mind and body. The idea of wellness – a more holistic approach to how we are and how we feel – has become cool.

In the western world in particular, we recognize now how busyness had become a status symbol. We were always trying to outdo each other in how busy we were, how stressed we were, and how important and invaluable we are to our company. Work, work, work was the only way and fitting in every other important aspect of our lives added to our stress. Busyness is no longer a status symbol. We are trying to slow down, pause and refresh, so now it’s live well, play well, be well, and create the space to unwind and unplug

This color trend embodies the calm shades that inspire us to slow down and relax, including neutrals with a hint of color and warm soothing shades that balance, renew and restore.

Green gold Vein gLOSSY PEARL WHITESun tan yellow BM OC 93 Satin white metallic    sparklingmelon

Green/Gold Vein Gloss Prl White Suntan Yellow BM OC 93          Stn White Metallic Sparkling Melon

BM decorators white Tropi Green rustic brown   satin progressive white Vanilla sand  Yellow topaz

BM Deco White   Tropi Green         Rustic Brown      Satin Prog. White   Vanilla Sand        Yellow Topaz 

Please note that colors represented on screen may not be a true representation. For example, the very soft whites do not standout against a white background, and softer shades can look faded rather than soft. The best way to see these colors is to get your own set of panels. Order your color samples today.

Color codes are below:

  • Green Gold Vein PLHS 91537PB
  • Glossy Pearl White PRMF 81234PB
  • Suntan Yellow PRSL 50526PT
  • BM OC 93 PRSL 82410PT
  • Satin White Metallic PRSL 94478PB
  • Sparkling Melon PLMF 93171PB
  • DM Decorators White PRSL 80594PB
  • Tropi Green PLBS 30969PT
  • Rustic Brown PRBL 92434PB
  • Satin Progressive White PRSL 82828PT
  • Vanilla Sand PRMS 93083
  • Yellow Topaz Hammertone PLRS 93331PB


This trend centers around the fact that technology has given rise to what is being called a new visual generation. Over the last couple of decades, kids have grown up with images constantly in their face; from TV, technology, commercials, and more. Interestingly, this new visual culture is often described in words, but is rarely shown in pictures!  This of course leads to visual overload. As always when something like this happens, a rebellion occurs and now the use of words and numeric figures is increasingly trendy. From Twitter announcing they are considering increasing the number of characters available to Tweet with, to the popularity of storytelling, poetry and rap the humble word is making a comeback..

The colors in this trend are again mid tone but utilize delicious inky blues, pencil and  charcoal greys, soft browns and faded creams reminiscent of traditional parchment. Texture is also important, with the tactile element being reminiscent or the rich descriptors that words provide.

Pearl Gentian Blue Sun tan yellow Textures straw tanT Graphite Blk mirror wrinkle New ancient black

Prl Gentian Blue  Suntan Yellow  Text.Straw Tan  T Graphite     Blk Mirror Wrinkle  N Ancient Black

navy blue silver Immaculate bluemetallic Charcoal Gray Antique granite pebblestone III Beech wood vein

Navy Silver       Immaculate Blue Charcoal Gray  Antique Granite Pebblestone III   Beech Wood Vein

Please note that colors represented on screen may not be a true representation. For example, it is difficult to discern between the shades of black and the suntan yellow may not appear as bright. The best way to see these colors is to get your own set of panels. Order your color samples today.

Full names and color codes are below:

  • Pearl Gentian Blue PLMS 91695PB
  • Suntan Yellow PRSL 50526PT
  • Textured Straw Tan PLFL 43398PT
  • T Graphite PRBS 92832PB
  • Black Mirror Wrinkle URWL 91851PB
  • New Ancient Black PRRS 90674PB
  • Navy Blue Silver PLRS 93383PB
  • Immaculate Blue Metallic PRSS 93569PT
  • Charcoal Gray Antique PRHS 90711PB
  • Granite PRBL 92435PB
  • Pebblestone III PRBS 92796PB
  • Beech Wood Vein PRRS 93791PT



The notion of games and play has been increasing over the last few years. Games are now everywhere and are impacting many different aspects of our lives from the way our kids learn, to how we do business and society in general

Technology has impacted play – from our mobile phones where we can crush candy or enjoy angry birds, to the meteoric rise of game systems like Xbox and Playstation. However over the last few years there has been a huge rise in the use of games not played on a screen - games played in person, with other players. Games can be fun, energetic, strategic…the list goes on. What is clear is that games are motivating and can also be addictive. Using the same mechanisms that are used in games in business can change how employees and a company works and can be incredible successful. Just think of the stories of how the sport and game facilities available at companies like Google and LinkedIn.

Unsurprisingly, the colors in this trend are bright, energetic, fun and eye catching, though they still retain the muted, mid tone look of the other palettes. A delicious coral pink sits next to a mustard based yellow and a warm orange, while Some deep, blue toned greens round off the collection nicely.

plumlicious metallic red burgandy rose redCitrus Sparkle Sunshine sparkle star burnt coppper

Plumlicious       Mtl Red Burg.    Rose Red           Citrus Sparkle   Sunshine Sparkle Star Bright Copper

2 Coat Blue PearlGreen Pearl opal green sandstormSwiss Coffeetext raw steel

2 Coat Blue      Pearl Green       Prl Opal Green  Sandstorm          Swiss Coffee            Textured Raw Steel

Please note that colors represented on screen may not be a true representation. For example, it is difficult to discern the warm red tones in the darker colors. The best way to see these colors is to get your own set of panels. Order your color samples today.

Color codes are below:

  • Plumlicious PRMF 91814PB
  • Metallic Red Burgundy PLMG 61086PB
  • Red Rose PLSF 61153PT
  • Citrus Sparkle PLMF 90778PB
  • Sunshine Sparkle PLMF 93178PB
  • Star Burnt Copper PLSF 95298PB
  • 2 Coat Blue PLSF 95287PB
  • Pearl Green PLMF 93577PB
  • Pearl Opal Green PLMF 93573PB
  • Sandstorm PRBS 92437PB
  • Swiss Coffee PRSL 80433PT
  • Textured Raw Steel PRRS 90681PB

In the western world, generally speaking, we have a lot of “stuff”. From the industrial revolution, mass production and the internet – 3 society, world changing things that made “stuff” available to us all - we now have an abundance of things and information.

It seems to us in the western world that we have a more than adequate supply of everything we need. In fact, if something breaks, we don’t even bother to fix it, we just get another one. Some stats show that there are 300,000 items in the average American home. Yet, 1 out of every 10 Americans rent offsite storage. So does this abundance of everything mean that we actually have too much? How much is too much and what do we have too much of? 

The colors in trend are shown in abundant, bright vivid shades, set against a choice matrix of simple neutrals like black and white. Warm red and orange tones again run through this trend, but there are some bright complimentary shades including a translucent blue and scrumptious purple, that really make it pop.

Black metallic Trans Starbrite Mahogany lonestar redCitrus Sparkle neon coral Buttercup

Black Metallic  Trans. Mahogany Lonestar Red   Citrus Sparkle   Neon Coral       Buttercup

BM decorators white Auto candy blue Trans metallic Green April Green EE Purple Mayo purple

Deco White      Auto Candy Blue Trans Mtl Green  April Green     EE Purple          Mayo Purple

Please note that colors represented on screen may not be a true representation. For example, it is difficult to see the metallic fleck in some shades and translucents cannot be displayed realistically. The best way to see these colors is to get your own set of panels. Order your color samples today.

Color codes are below:

  • Black metallic PRMS 92390PB
  • Trans. Starbrite Mahogany URSF 93450PB
  • Lonestar Red PRSS 61279PB
  • Citrus Sparkle PLMF 90778PB
  • Neon Coral PRSF 61650
  • Buttercup PLSF 50174PB
  • BM Decorators White PRSL 80594PB
  • Auto Candy Blue PLSF 94856PB
  • Trans. Metallic Green PLSF 94856PB
  • April Green PLFL 93894PB
  • EE Purple PLMF 93928PB
  • Mayo Purple PLRS 93949PB