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Travel Palette: Montreal Convention Center – Pantone 13-0647 Illuminating Yellow

Designtofive - Pantone 13-0647 TCX Illuminating Yellow Color Palette- Palais des Congres - Inspiration - Blog Post
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Illuminating, Chromatic, Vivid

Here we are, starting the year with the first Design to Five post of 2021. There’s no better way to start the year on this blog than with some inspiration and uplifting energy. This month’s travel palette features Pantone’s 2021 color of the year: Illuminating 13-0647 Yellow.

I’m sorry, not sorry, but I am bringing total eye candy this month. You can thank this stunning scene at Palais des congrès de Montréal for this amazing array of colors. For those not a polyglot wannabe like me, Palais des congrès de Montréal translates to Montreal Convention Center. First, learn about this unique building and its architectural features. Then, discover how the building inspired this colorful and playful palette.

Next, get insight into how I created a color palette around Pantone’s Illuminating 13-0647 Yellow color. After, get the details on these showstopper materials. Learn how to play with color for your project or space.

The travel palette series expands creative horizons. It explores the correlation between travel, inspiration, colors, textures, and design.

  Pantone 13-0647 TCX Illuminating Yellow Color Palette  Pantone 13-0647 TCX Illuminating Yellow Inspired Color & Finish Palette

About Montreal Convention Center (Palais des congrès de Montréal)

Montreal Convention Center (Palais des congrès de Montréal) _ Rainbow interior and stair
Can we just…The ombre realness happening on the stair. And don’t overlook that color reflection in the tile.

Um, whose idea was this? This is a great example of thinking outside the box and making a statement. Before I get into the details, let’s just take a moment to soak in the chromatic ombre effect happening at this stairwell on the right. Unreal right? Okay, let’s get into it. The Montreal Convention Center is in downtown Montreal in the international district. This building is multi-colored and multipurpose. This bold building houses conferences, trade shows, meetings, and other events.


The west facade of the building contains over 300 colored glass panels. The result is an illuminating experience brought to life after a study of color, transparency, and light. The color casts shadows on the floor, diffuses onto the stair railing, and reflects on glass and metal. It is beautiful. The colorful glass effect changes with the position of the sun and weather. The sheer height of these walls and the pattern and play of color will leave you staring up in a rainbow trance. The illuminating effect is captivating.

Who is behind this colorful masterpiece? Well, the building was originally designed by Architect, Victor Prus in the 1970s. The building’s expansion and colorful renovation were completed in 2002. Architect Mario Saia leads the renovation efforts and collaborated with several architecture firms.

These photos were taken back in 2017 during a trip to Montreal with Arborite Laminate. I had extended my trip to explore more of Montreal, and I was not disappointed. On my way to visit Chinatown, I made sure I stopped by the convention center. The building is uniquely at the border of Old Montreal, the international district, and Chinatown. The prime location is conveniently nearby other sites, so be sure not to miss it!

Interested in other architecture in Montreal? Check out my post 10 Architectural Sites to Visit in Montreal.

This building is not enough to sway you to visit? Check other reasons to put Montreal on your list in my post 15 Reasons Why You Should Visit Montreal.


Montreal Convention Center (Palais des congrès de Montréal) Interior- Rainbow Glass Building
Montreal Convention Center (Palais des congrès de Montréal)
Montreal Convention Center (Palais des congrès de Montréal) Interior Entrance - Rainbow Glass
Montreal Convention Center (Palais des congrès de Montréal)


Montreal Convention Center – Pantone Illuminating 13-0647 Yellow Color Palette 

Color, creativity, captivation. That is what went through my mind while reliving this moment. (And who doesn’t love the alliteration.) This is one of my favorite photos. My dark silhouette against the colored glass softly diffused with the overcast sky. The photo captures the wonder, inspiration, and curiosity I felt at that moment.

The palette picks up on the pinks, yellows, aquas, and purples of the building’s glass. One featured color of the palette is Pantone’s color of the year for 2021, Illuminating 13-0647 Yellow. This color is one of the two colors Pantone announced for 2021. The duo is Illuminating 13-0647 Yellow and Ultimate Gray 17-5104. The Montreal Convention Center’s window panes contain a vibrant yellow. The sun shining through the glass creates a luminous effect. A luminous yellow for the color Illuminating. It is the perfect pairing.

The palette’s other color sources are the colors cast on the metal and stair. A unique effect of the colored shadows is the diffused ombre color effect on the stairwell. The pairing of pink, yellow, aqua, and purple is playful, bright, and energetic. When pulling this color palette together, I was also influenced by something else… Does this color palette look at all familiar to you? Read on to find out.

The sources of each color are indicated below and then matched with a Pantone color.


Pantone 13-0647 TCX Illuminating Yellow Color Palette - Color Inspiration



Pantone 13-0647 TCX Illuminating Yellow Color Palette


Okay, now. Here’s when the aha moment came for me… I was creating a color palette that matched the leading ladies at the inauguration! Inspiration really comes from everywhere! When creating the palette, I originally had a darker blue. I changed the blue to purple, and BOOM. I had made an inauguration palette. Pretty neat.

Inauguration - Monochrome Fashion - Red, Aqua, Pink, and Yellow
Vanity Fair (Photo Source)


Bringing you this palette with some light, fun, fresh, and playful energy! This palette plays with transparency, color, and linear elements.

The Montreal Convention Center had a lot of color inspiration to choose from! The colorful glass provided the yellow, pink, purple, and aqua colors in the palette. This palette also is inauguration inspired! You have the yellow (Amanda Gorman), pink (Michelle Obama), purple (Vice President Kamala Harris), and aqua (First Lady Dr. Jill Biden). It was an iconic day with iconic women and iconic fashion.

The grid of different colored glass created the linear and grid motif for the palette. This is shown in the colorful wallcovering, flooring, and upholstery. The glass also inspired the play of transparency with the yellow resin and the blue glass. The palette explores the balance of color and pattern.

All materials are described and linked below.


Palette Materials

Retro chair with pastel pink upholstery and a wooden table in an empty room interior with white walls and copy space
Astek – Bows + Arrows – Green Wallcovering Install (Photo Source)

Colored Glass Pattern: Wallpaper

Creating the foundation of the palette is this wallcovering from Astek. The wallcovering, Bow + Arrows, features a fun pattern of grouped color-blocked bars. The lines and dots motif incorporated into the pattern adds visual interest. This playful arrangement of blocked colors relates to the rhythm of the colored windows. Love the pattern, but want to tweak the color? You can customize this pattern and change the colors to your liking!

Colorful patterned color-block upholstery - Astek - Bows + Arrows - Green
Astek – Bows + Arrows – Green (Photo Source)
Yellow Glass and Elements: Yellow Upholstery

 Geiger Textiles – Iron Cloth – Citron

Pantone color, Illuminating, could not be featured without some yellow! This Geiger Textile, Iron Cloth, in the color, Citron, provides some nice texture to the palette. The fabric has a terry-cloth textured look. The textile subtly picks up on the grid motif. Iron Cloth is SCS Indoor Advantage Gold certified and contains biobased materials. The colorway Citron also coordinates with the 3form yellow resin in the palette.

Illuminating Yellow - Yellow Textured Upholstery - Geiger Textiles - Iron Cloth - Citron
Geiger Textiles – Iron Cloth – Citron (Photo Source)

Colorful Glass & Grid Pattern
: Woven Vinyl

Chilewich – Savile Tile Plank – Parade

Do you like color, but prefer it in smaller doses? I can’t get over this Chilewich material. Savile, in the color, Parade, is a cream woven pattern. The material has varying strands of yellows, pinks, and blues. I love how the pattern coordinates with the bold upholsteries but it is still dynamic to shine on its own. Savile is available in a variety of applications. Use the Savile pattern for wallcovering, flooring, and window treatment. Can’t beat design with a sustainable story. The item includes 25% renewable vegetable content.

Chilewich - Savile Wall Textile - Parade - Woven Wall Textile with Yellow, Pink, and Blue
Chilewich – Savile Wall Textile – Parade (Photo Source)
Blue Glass: Blue Laminated Colored Glass

Carvart – Blue Laminated Glass – C098

This palette wouldn’t be complete without some colored glass. Colored glass is the MVP and the reason for having this inspiration image! This laminated glass from Carvart introduces the play of transparency, color, and light. The aqua glass in the palette represents the color effect in the inspiration image. Laminated colored glass is versatile. It can be a way to introduce branding, feature a color, or create an unexpected design moment.

Aqua Blue - Carvart Laminated Glass - Color 098
Carvart – Laminated Glass- Color 098 (Photo Source)
Reflected Purple Railing Effect: Purple Upholstery

Designtex – Heather – Ultra Violet

Designtex’s Ultraviolet was Ultra-fitting for this palette. (I made it all the way this far without a cringy pun. It was only a matter of time.) The building contains purple glass. It’s out of frame in the inspiration image but it is represented in the diffused colors on the stair railing. Designtex Heather is a nice wool blend. The heathered textile contains a blend of magenta pink and royal purple. The hints of pink made this upholstery coordinate nicely with the pinks in the palette.

Purple Heather Upholstery Designex - Heather - Ultra Violet
Designtex – Heather – Ultra Violet (Photo Source)



Reflected Pink Metal Effect – Pink Upholstery

Brentano – Jubilee Collection – Celebration – Birthday

Ceeeeelebrate good upholsteries, c’mon!  Okay, I couldn’t help it, it’s in the name. And boy, is the upholstery a heavy hitter. Brentano’s line, Celebration, is durable with a pleasantly soft hand. (I am taking breaks to pet it as I type). You can thank the chenille yarn woven in for that.  I am a fan of the soft striated basketweave look and the added depth with the tonal play. This is due to the mixing of yarns and the flecks on linen incorporated.  This series has the best of both: some trusty neutral staples and some punchy accent colors, like Birthday, shown below. 

Pink Upholstery - Brentano - Jubilee - Celebration - Birthday
Brentano – Jubilee – Celebration – Birthday (Photo Source)


Colorful Glass & Grid Pattern: Multicolored Patterned Upholstery

Knoll Textiles – Plaidtastic – Technicolor

Sometimes, more is more. And you have to know when it’s time to shine. The name says it all. This upholstery from Knoll is Plaidtastic! Do you have upholstery that you think is awesome, but you don’t quite know how to pull it off in a palette? This upholstery found its home. After looking at the palette’s linear motif and bold coordinating punchy colors, I knew. I knew it was time for Technicolor to have its moment in the spotlight. Plaidtastic is a large scale plaid pattern inspired by a vintage textile. The pattern has 26, yes 26, yarn colors that take your eye on a visual journey. The upholstery makes those rainbow vibes come alive!

Rainbow Plaid Textile - Muilti-colored Plaid Pattern - Knoll Textiles - Plaidtastic - Technicolor
Knoll Textiles – Plaidtastic – Technicolor (Photo Source)

Reflected Aqua Stair Railing Effect: Aqua Patterened Upholstery

Pollack Hospitality – Buenos Aires – Lagoon

Coordinating with aqua in the palette is this upholstery for Pollack Hospitality. This upholstery is one of those patterns that coordinate well with other patterns. Pollack Buenos Aires is a small-scale and organic-like pattern. The fabric complements the bold Plaidtastic in the palette without feeling overwhelming. The woven effect creates these little wavy triangles. I was immediately drawn to this color Lagoon. The Buenos Aires line also has some nice globally-inspired colorways.

Teal Aqua Patterned Upholstery - Pollack Hospitality - Buenos Aires - Lagoon
Pollack Hospitality – Buenos Aires – Lagoon (Photo Source)

Yellow Glass: Resin Panel

 3form – Chroma – Chirp Y20

The diffused color effect happening at the stair railing is similar to the visual of 3form Chroma. 3form Chroma is a resin panel. Chroma is highly customizable with 250 colors and a variety of diffusion options and effects. When the light comes through the sample, it diffuses and has a soft illuminating effect. The illuminating yellow of Chirp Y20 is the perfect fit to represent Pantone 13-0647 Illuminating Yellow.

Illuminating Yellow - Yellow Resin Panel - Transparent Finish - 3form - Chroma - Chirp Y20
3form – Chroma – Chirp Y20 (Photo Source)


What colorful building do you love and find inspiration in? 

Love color and want to see another colorful palette with yellow featured? Check out: Travel Palette: Pena Palace Color Palette 


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Design to five is a blog enhancing the link between culture, travel, and design. The blog showcases products from local, sustainable, business from around the world, and travel-related content to encourage affordable, conscious, and educational adventures for design lovers.

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