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What is Pantone? A Simple Guide

When it comes to colours, there's a world of possibilities out there. But what if you need to precisely describe a colour, not just say it's "blue" or "red"? That's where Pantone comes into play. In this easy-to-read blog post, we'll explore what Pantone is and why it's important in the colourful world of design and printing.

What is Pantone?

Pantone is a standardized colour matching system that uses a unique numbering system to identify and communicate colours. It was created by Lawrence Herbert in the 1960s and has since become an essential tool in various industries, including graphic design, fashion, and printing.

Why is Pantone Important?


Imagine you're a designer working on a logo for a client. You choose a beautiful shade of blue for their branding. Without Pantone, you'd simply describe it as "blue." But what if the printer or manufacturer interprets "blue" differently? The result could be a logo that looks different from what you envisioned.

Pantone solves this problem by assigning a unique code to each colour, like a secret language for designers and printers. This code ensures that no matter where or how the colour is reproduced, it will always be the same. Consistency is key in design and branding, and Pantone makes it possible.


Pantone provides a universal language for discussing and sharing colors. Instead of trying to describe a colour with words, you can simply reference its Pantone code. This simplifies communication between designers, clients, and manufacturers. It reduces the chances of misunderstandings and helps everyone involved stay on the same page.

Colour Matching

In industries like fashion and home decor, colour matching is crucial. Imagine buying a sofa online and expecting it to match your living room's wall paint, only to discover they clash horribly when they arrive. Pantone solves this problem by offering precise color references. Designers, manufacturers, and consumers can all use Pantone codes to ensure that the colours they choose will harmonize perfectly.

Wide Application

Pantone isn't just for designers and printers. It's used in various fields, from cosmetics and plastics to paint and textiles. For example, when you buy a tube of lipstick labeled with a specific shade of red, that shade is likely defined using Pantone. This broad applicability makes Pantone an indispensable tool for a wide range of industries.

How Does Pantone Work?

Pantone assigns each colour a unique code known as a Pantone Colour Number (PCN). This code consists of a series of letters and numbers, like "PMS 294C" for a shade of blue. The "PMS" stands for Pantone Matching System, and the number and letter combination precisely defines the colour.

Designers and manufacturers can access Pantone colour guides, which display swatches of colours along with their corresponding codes. This helps them select the exact shade they want to use.


In a world where colour matters, Pantone is the go-to solution for precise colour communication and consistency. Whether you're a designer creating a logo, a fashion designer selecting fabric, or a homeowner choosing paint, Pantone simplifies the process and ensures that the colours you choose will look just as you expect them to.

So the next time you see a Pantone code, you'll know that it's more than just a random combination of letters and numbers—it's the key to unlocking the world of colour!

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