Painting With Pizazz - Design Bureau


Gretchen Finals MED-100[1]


Painting With Pizazz

Tuesday, May 20th, 2014

Images courtesy of Devine Color 

When Gretchen Schauffler left Puerto Rico to move to the Northwest US as a child, it took some time to adjust to the local color palette.

“There was an incredible resource of color wealth [in Puerto Rico], and then I came to a place where the color was literally on mute nine months a year,” Schauffler says. Out of this contrast, and armed with a desire to introduce these tropical hues to the North- west canvas, her philosophy on color and company was born. For Devine Color Creamy Wall Coatings, it’s more than just paint. It’s paint, illuminated.

When working on a color scheme for a client, Schauffler’s process revolves around gut feelings and the process of discovery—so much so that she refers to what other paint designers might call “color swatches” as “discovery cards.” “If you’re a designer who is working closely with a client,” she says, “looking at the cards helps you better understand your client and can give you a revelation that may have taken hours to arrive at—whereas if you’re choosing colors on your own, you can really connect to your own intuition and have confidence in what you’re selecting.”

Schauffler’s blog (, which features a vivid amalgamation of sources of inspiration (think: fine art, Pinterest posts, interviews, and more), is a further extension of this philosophy. “I want people to see what colors they love and what colors can do for you,” she says.

So how exactly do you determine what color is right for your design project or interior-design overhaul? Schauffler often focuses on the colors that already exist in a person’s home life, no matter how small or insignificant they might seem. The goal is to enhance with color, not distract.

“I like to equate choosing colors for our homes to choosing cosmetics,” Schauffler says. “Just as selecting the right red lipstick for your complexion makes the difference between beautiful lips and a crazy bright mouth overwhelming the wearer, so does picking the perfect color for a room’s lighting, décor, and inhabitants. This is key to creating a look that feels not only perfect but beautiful.”

Schauffler cites an example of a client who once was set on the color yellow for a room. When Schauffler was brought into the mix, she saw that because the room already had such an abundance of yellow in the material, using the color on the walls as well would create an overwhelming lemondrop effect. “Instead, I advised her to consider red or green on the walls to enhance the yellow, instead of being the accent,” she says.

For those living in the Northwest, life truly does begin again in the summer—but with Schauffler’s colors, one can create that vibrancy indoors all year long.

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