by Oana-Maria Moldovan
Pantone, continuing its yearly tradition since 1999, recently unveiled the colour of the year for 2024: a mesmerising blend of soft pink and calm orange, aptly named peach fuzz.
While this name might be new, the colour and its place in fashion definitely isn’t.
Getting better accustomed with this shade, we have to look into the past, where the roots of this hue intertwine with the French Rococo Era. Picture décolletages, feather fans, and blushful pinks ruling the fashion scene.
Madame Pompadour, official chief mistress of King Louis XV from 1745 to 1751, has a love for blushes which echoes in Pantone's 2024 colour of the year.
With a penchant for blush tones in both her wardrobe and her makeup, it’s believed one of her most preferred colours was what we today call peach fuzz. Granted, no one in her time called it that, but the fact still stands - immortalised her portraits.
While not exclusively born in the Rococo Era, it undeniably gained popularity during that period. It became a statement for the "it girls" of 18th-century France, a trend echoing through the ages.
Although this hazy colour seems difficult to fit anywhere near a modern wardrobe, simply looking to French brands can be a big help.
There is a sort of je ne sais quoi around the way they use this blushy tone. Take a cue from Givenchy's NWT fall 2019 runway, where a puffy sleeved peach fuzz dress stole the show, proving French brands' timeless affinity with this hue.
However, most people today associate the peachy tone with the late ‘90s and early 2000s. Although the 90s, in general, are known for a more grunge-esque look, from red carpets to Alicia Silverstone's iconic 1995 Rolling Stone cover, peachy pink shades definitely made their mark.
Today, we see it most in Florence Pugh’s wardrobe. Originally paving the way of 2023’s Magenta Pink, she’s also one for the lighter shades too.
As we enter more muted eras, the almost pastel orange-pink hybrid of peach fuzz finds its place, thanks in part to the resurgence of balletcore.
For a subtle injection, some will choose to wear it as make up (through a Dior gloss would be to die for), others will prefer accessories - think bows and flowers. Yes, those neck cords aren’t going anywhere. Peach fuzz shoes, nails and a catch-eye bag would be perfect, too. It’s all about the details.
The most courageous will integrate it. You could wear a doll-like, puffy sleeved dress in this colour. You can also wear it in certain elements like a blouse or pencil skirt.
To truly channel the Rococo Era would be to wear it in the most outrageous ways. Take inspiration from 2014 tumblr era, which we’re all craving after the latest Hunger Games instalment, and dye your hair the calming shade!
Let’s make this year one for the French style. Feather dresses or even a trench coat would do peach fuzz true justice.
Peach fuzz might seem divisive, whether it is simply not to your liking, doesn’t match your style, or even contrasts your skin tone, there are ways to get around this.
Similar shades that might ease you in are champagne (perfect for the holiday season) or mauve - both great candidates. You can never go wrong with the more earthy tones of the peach either.
With predictions like nova blue, it feels like the winner had come out of left field, but Pantone explained the colour aims to convey an idea of togetherness. Something we definitely need at the moment.
But for fashions ? For fashion this colour represents everything this industry ever stood for: the power of being both beautiful and a bit weird. As well as harking to notable fashion roots, France.
While Magenta was 2023’s bold and well-deserved colour, peach fuzz? She’s even more daring.
Edited by Emily Duff