what are pantone colors blog

What are the Pantone Colors?

What are Pantone Colors and Why Do We Need Them?

In short, Pantone colors are a standard language for colors. They are used by a variety of companies to help color match. Pantone colors are used worldwide. If you want consistency with your brand, you need Pantone colors. Using Pantone’s will help ensure everything you have from clothes, business cards, flags, and more all match in color, no matter the material. While absolute color matching is never guaranteed, using Pantone colors will get you as close as possible.

The Pantone Matching System was founded in 1956. It was founded by brothers Morris and Jesse Levine. They hired Lawrence Herbert who used his chemistry knowledge to simplify the stock of pigments and production of colored inks. By consolidating the printing company’s stock of colors, they were able to then sell their first set of color swatches. The idea being to allow designers to “color match” specific colors regardless of the machines used to print.

Pantone Color Book

How do I Find Pantone Colors?

The Pantone website will provide you with all of their color varieties. For our flags, we use Solid Coated Pantone colors. Once you find a color you like, you can send it to us and we will be able to match it as closely as possible. At Feather Flag Nation, we prefer Pantone colors to help you get the exact flag you are looking for. If you are unsure of what Pantone color you’d like, you can always send us the CMYK color instead.

If you aren’t sure if on what colors you’d like to use, you can order some of our free swatches! You can pick up to 10 colors. We will print and wash them as we would the flag, giving you the best possible match. You just have to cover shipping. Use this link to order your swatches!

What is the Difference Between Coated and Uncoated Pantone Colors?

At Feather Flag Nation, we used Solid Coated Pantone colors. There are coated and uncoated Pantone colors available, so why do we need coated colors? The kind of color you pick should directly reflect what it is you plan printing. There are coated and uncoated materials used for printing. With coated materials, the ink will sit on top of the fabric while with uncoated materials, the ink will sink into it.

Our polyester flags do have a coating on them. This means that the ink won’t sink into the fabric, thus causing it to spread. Because of this, we need our clients to provide us with the Solid Coated Pantones. Having the coating on top will help your flags ink last longer and the colors won’t bleed into each other.

coated vs uncoated pantone colors

Why Can't I use RGB or CMYK Colors?

When it comes to print, Pantone colors are going to be your ideal match. If you don’t have the Pantone colors, CMYK colors are your next best thing. CMYK stands for Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Black and these are the 4 colors used in every printer. They are used to make up all the other colors. Since Pantones are universal, they will match better than CMYK. CMYK colors will vary depending on the printer being used.

CMYK colors will work instead of Pantones, but RGB colors will not. RGB colors are strictly meant for digital screens. Your phone, computer, and tv all use RGB colors. RGB stands for Red, Green, and Blue and is lights used in your monitors. Because they are lights, that is what gives them their bright and neon look. RGB colors cannot be used for print and if you send us RGB files, we will convert them to CMYK which means they may lose some of their brightness.

Here is side-by-side example of color as CMYK vs RGB:

RGB vs CMYK color difference

How Will My Custom Flag Look When Printed?

The proof we provide for you will not directly reflect how the flag will print. Since the screen uses lights to show colors, our colors will print 10-15% lighter. The lighting will also affect how the flag appears. If the sun is in front of your flag, it will appear brighter with more vivid colors. If the sun is behind your flag, it will appear darker. The overall color will be different than the proof. We do not provide free reprints or refunds due to color variation.  

Get Started on Your Custom Flag Now!

Now that you have a better idea of how to use Pantone colors, go ahead and send in your free design request. You can use the Pantone site to pick any colors you would like to use. Send in your design request along with logos, images, or whatever else you need to make the perfect flag. You will hear back from our designers within the same business day (as long as the request is sent in during office hours) and you can email directly with them to design your flag to perfection!

Have any questions? Contact Us! Send us an email at sales@featherflagnation.com or give us a call at 1 (877) 900-5692. We are open M-F from 8am-4:30pm PST. 

we do not guarantee color matching

Due to printer variations and outdoor conditions, we do not guarantee any color matching. Providing Pantone colors is the best way to get the closest color possible to what you need. No reprints or refunds are offered based on color variances.

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