Let’s say you’d like to paint your bathroom the color of your favorite tie—or your living room the precise shade of white used inside the Museum of Modern Art. Such are the decorating whims that Pantone’s new line of paint makes possible. Indeed, thanks to the company’s collaboration with Vermont-based Fine Paints of Europe, just over 3,000 Pantone colors are now available as paint—something that executive vice president Lisa Herbert says customers have been requesting for years. “It seems like a given, and a natural extension of our brand,” she says.
Color matching is performed by the Color Cue, a handheld gizmo that looks vaguely like a discarded Star Trek prop. Hold it to any flat surface or texture and the Color Cue will supply the corresponding number from the Pantone library. “If you have a leaf, you can match it,” Herbert says. “If you wanted to put it on your golden retriever, you could do that.”
You probably don’t want to do that, but it’s nice to know that the high-quality Dutch paint will reproduce even the zaniest decorating ideas, achieving accurate color with only one coat (although Pantone recommends two for most jobs). The paints have a long life span—in the neighborhood of 10 to 20 years—so you will be able to enjoy those golden retriever walls for a long time. Maybe too long.
Pantone paints are available as oils, acrylics, and an “eco” line, which combines oil and waterborne formulations.
The acrylic and “eco” paints are non-off-gassing and have low VOCs. The oil paint is less environmentally friendly.
The color matching allows designers to coordinate multiple materials precisely, incorporate brand-identity standards, and obey the most bizarre of decorating impulses.
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