Helsinki’s colour palette is based on the colours that can be seen and recognised in Helsinki’s urban landscape. Individual colours have been refined to match the package.
These defined four colour hues (CMYK) must be used in four-colour printing. Separate hues have also been defined in Pantone colours for both coated and non-coated papers in the .ase colour palette below.
Foil and metallic hue printing (Pantone) may be used with silver and gold colours. Elsewhere the hues must be within the given RGB and CMYK values. Grey and black cannot be used with % values or hues.
In a digital environment, the colours should be used only in HEX/RGB formats and Helsinki Design System (HDS) guidelines should be followed.
Safe color combinations
For best accessibility results use included color matrix for colour combinations where the contrast of the different colors are the greatest. By using these color combinations you will ensure that the text is visible everywhere and for everyone. When using other combinations pay attention to accessibility for example enlarging elements for better readability.
Helsinki’s colour palette includes a lot of colours that can be used. The adjacent table shows which colours are good matches. The chosen prime colour (row) can be combined with the additional colour indicated in the table (column).
When combining colours, you must ensure that the two chosen colours differ enough; there must be enough contrast between the colours.
Some of these allowed colour combinations can be challenging. Using them can be justified on wide colour surfaces and with colour surface combinations. It is possible to create original communications with such colour combinations, that are characteristic for Helsinki.
Use of colours
a. In the logo
The Helsinki framed logo is primarily used in black or white. Using the logo in brand colours is also allowed and in these cases, you must be ensured that the sufficiently legible and that the overall colour combination does clash.
b. The logo against a coloured background
The coloured logo is mainly used against a white background. If needed, using black is also allowed.
c. Colour combinations
Some of the allowed colour combinations are demanding. The use of them is restricted only to grouping of colour surfaces. However, special colour combinations are an important characteristic of the identity, through which it is possible to create original communications that is characteristic for Helsinki.
Demanding colour combinations work best in backgrounds and large surfaces. The clarity and readability of the message is always the most important thing. Demanding combinations must not be used when presenting information. Clearly visible colour combinations must be chosen especially when choosing colours for small text sizes.