What are pantone colors?
A brief explanation about pantone colors and how to use them to print colors on textile.
Pantone colors are color codes that stand for a specific shade. You can communicate about colors by defining the pantone code. Basically, pantone is the standard language for colors.
The formula developed by pantone is a spot color. This means that the color is created from a palette of 18 basic colors, not with screens or dots. Process colors are CMYK colors, the color is determined by cyan, magenta, yellow and black. There are more pantone colors because not all colors can be mixed in CMYK.
Pantone colors for screen printing
Using pantone colors is ideal for non-fabric materials, so this might be problematic to define colors to print on textile. The color of the textile influences the color of the ink. This is not the case for white textile, it’s always safe to print on white textile. Your design and the colors will be best on white. We always print an under base to have a good print on colored textile.
Pantone colors can be used with screen printing. Then you know exactly how the color will look like. This is not the case with digital printing, where the color of your design is being matched with the ink. The code of pantone colors can be followed by a C or an U, which stands for coated and uncoated. Generally, it’s better to choose coated colors for screen printing as there is always a little shine in the ink. But also the uncoated formulas can be used for more opaque colors.
We use different tools to print exactly the defined pantone color on textile. One of the tools we use is the Pantone PMS Formula Guidebook for Screen printing includes 1 867 pantone spot colors with their corresponding ink formulations. This tool is a must to have a good communication about colors.
On the website pantone.com, there are plenty of tools and products that can help you with color decisions.
Green, but which green? That green! There can’t be a discussion with pantone colors. Most important of all, it’s still the expertise of the screen printer that can assure you the colors that you expect. So choose a reliable partner if you want top-quality printed textile.