Experiment with a crimson color in your designs.

Learn more about this vibrant variation of red, and how to use it effectively with other colors in your design concepts.

Bold and bright, crimson is an intense pinkish shade of red often likened to the color of a ripening sunset. Since every color has meaning, artists and designers will use the combination of crimson and other colors to convey certain ideas or messages. Let’s explore what crimson symbolizes and how you can put it to work in your designs.

The meaning of crimson.

In general, the color red embodies various meanings and can evoke different feelings in different people — and the same goes for crimson. In a positive sense, crimson can symbolize vigor, passion, love, affection, and even courage. Since crimson is also likened to the color of fresh blood, however, it can represent darker meanings such as anger, warning, revenge, and ruthlessness.

Explore similar colors.

If you’re looking for a slightly darker red than crimson, consider fire brick (#B21031) and dark red (#880C24). On the other side of the spectrum, coral (#FF7F50) and rose red (#FF033E) are also similar to crimson, but with slightly lighter hues and more pinkish tones.

Color combinations that pair with crimson.

To showcase elegance and sophistication, try pairing crimson with gentle, neutral shades such as champagne, white, and serenity blue. For an earthy palette, try adding crimson to autumnal colors such as gold, brown, and chili pepper. Using teal or dark cyan with crimson creates an eye-catching pop of contrast — perfect for grabbing attention in logos or illustrations.

Try experimenting with crimson as either an accent or background color and see how it affects both the look and the significance of your designs. Discover more ways you can spice up your graphic design concepts.

Find out what you can make — from logos and icons to illustrations and poster art — with Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, and InDesign.