‘Avocado Toast’ Is Now a Paint Color

Benjamin Moore offers consumers a choice of more than 3,500 paint colors. Sherwin-Williams, a competitor, sells a more limited but still substantial palette of 1,500 hues. To buy either brand, you generally have to visit a hardware store or big-box retailer like Lowe’s, select from an array of color chips and wait while the paint is mixed by an employee.

You may have to buy sample cans to test the paint on your walls at home, and make a return trip to the store, before you settle on the right color.

It’s not exactly a soulful task, but for decades it was a manageable one. Or perhaps it wasn’t. Because as with so many consumer categories that have been transformed over the past decade by tech entrepreneurs, from mattresses to eyewear to hailing a cab, paint is being “disrupted.”

“Like white, for example. You would think white was just white. Easy,” Ms. Gibbons said. “But you go to any other company and there are usually a hundred or more whites to choose from. People start to get confused and doubt.”

Taking a “hyper-curated” approach, Ms. Gibbons offered only three whites with Clare, and one paint finish for walls (eggshell) and one finish for trim (semigloss). She also developed a “color genius” tool that asks questions about your space and spits out a recommended hue.

“The whole premise of Clare is to simplify, so by the time you’re at the end of this process, it’s joy, not hassle,” Ms. Gibbons said. “Sometimes people just want fewer, better choices.”

Caleb and Natalie Ebel, the married founders of Backdrop, also espouse fewer, better, but unlike Ms. Gibbons, they celebrate the messiness of painting. Colors are represented on their site as gooey drops of wet paint, and the imagery in their ad campaign is of people ready to paint, not static, furnished rooms.

The Ebels, both in their early 30s, have no background in design or color theory. Ms. Ebel worked in marketing and branding for an education nonprofit, while Mr. Ebel, who has a finance degree, touts his early experience at Warby Parker (“I worked at Warby Parker” is the new “I was at Woodstock”). With Backdrop, the Ebels have applied personal branding and style signifiers to a business “void of any emotion,” Mr. Ebel said.

Source link LifeStyle

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