The Colors of Fall and Graphic Design

“I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.” – L.M. Montgomery

If you ask me, the fall season is the undisputed champion of all four seasons we get here in South Dakota, and it really isn’t much of a competition at all. From the quaking aspen trees turning to a vibrant yellow and shaking in the breeze to the calling card of South Dakota’s most beloved invasive species, the Ring-necked Pheasant, cackling in the cool morning air. If it was October all year round, I wouldn’t complain at all.

A 2006 study found that people make up their minds about other people and products within 90 seconds, and between 62 and 90 percent of that assessment is based on color alone.

That is why as the seasons change so do the color palates on a graphic designers computer. One could say that autumn is a sensory overload when it comes to the possibilities of fall color schemes to lay upon a blank canvas. So how do the colors of fall affect your branding and influence customers to buy?


Shades of Purple

The many shades of purple make appearances in most fall-themed design work. Dark purples have a rich and wholesome feel that evokes the essence of fall just by looking at them. It’s reminiscent of the seasonal foods we eat during this time such as ripe figs and cranberries. While these purples don’t have the attention grabbing factor of a brighter red, the muted calmness of purple makes a great backdrop for any fall design.

The King Orange

You couldn’t escape the colors of orange during the fall if you wanted to, orange is inevitably the king of fall colors. With the vibrant orange leaves on maple trees to the glowing of pumpkins on Halloween night, orange is everywhere. You will see orange on design materials plenty this time of year, the key is to not go overboard. The last thing you want is an orange overload, use it strategically and it will add the familiarity of fall to your artwork.

Boring Brown?

While fall is beautiful with the amazing colors of the trees commencing a “going out of business” sale, all good things must come to an end. By mid-November we are mostly left with brown. Don’t let this deceive you, it’s not a bad thing. Shades of brown are the perfect complement to all other fall colors! Brown is the unsung hero of fall colors, it’s not flashy but without it, all the pretty colors wouldn’t have the same appeal. Use shades of brown in your fall designs to really make your other colors pop.


Of course, there are more colors that speak of the fall than the three listed above. We love all the yellows, reds, and greens as well, but blogs can only be so long and I can only wax poetic about my favorite time of the year so long as well. In conclusion, take advantage of the colors of fall now to bring the vibrance of the season to your business!