Green by Omission: YOLO Colorhouse Paint

Green by Omission: YOLO Colorhouse Paint

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Janel Laban
Jun 14, 2007
(Welcome to Jonathan, one of the finalists in our Editor search for the upcoming Apartment Therapy Green blog. He's writing from Portland, Oregon. Comment away!)

Unexpected, intelligent twists can make or break a design — or a green product. YOLO Colorhouse paint is water-based, Green Seal certified, and zero-VOC, which helps to make Yolo more environmentally friendly. But beyond the beautiful branding, designed by Seattle outfit YAM Studio, the eco-conscious women behind Yolo Colorhouse designed a new way of choosing color that is, in itself, green.

We've all been stymied by tiny paint chips, which, even to a trained eye, seem simply deceitful: the color is never the same on the chip as it is in the can. Even professionals struggle. Portland, Oregon-based artists, professional finishers, and Yolo co-founders Janie Young and Virginia Lowe noticed this problem in their own work and came up with an intelligent—and quietly green—solution: poster-size color swatches painted by hand with real paint, which save both paint and effort. Swatches cost less than a quart of cheap paint, and you don't have to wash out a brush after you test a color on the wall. Watch the color change with the light, then proceed, assured that you have not wasted paint unnecessarily. Colors are inspired by nature: vibrant, yet restful, like Clay 07, the perfect coral.
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