New Orleans Whorehouse Red and Other Hazards of the Job
Ever just sit around and flip through a Benjamin Moore or Sherwin Williams fan deck? Such gorgeous colors, such great names. Everyone seems to think that whoever’s job it is to name all those colors has the greatest job around.
I did, anyway. But now that I mix and sell paint all day, I’m seeing what a challenge it can be to name all those colors…. And we don’t have nearly the selection that the big companies do.
Sometimes we just look at a new batch of paint and know exactly what to name it. It speaks to us.
Other times, we really need to think it through. We try to be creative, unique, different. We try to keep a sense of humor. We especially try to give our paint colors a name that might make someone want to buy it! I believe we even named one color “Delicious.”
In the beginning it was easy, but the more paint we mix the tougher it is to come up with great new names. We’ve used our kids names, we’ve let customers in the shop name colors, we’ve had “drink wine and name paint” parties. We’ve even held paint-naming contests where the winner goes home with a gallon of their choice.
For a while I was naming paints after Grateful Dead songs, but I stopped short when I got to “Wharf Rat.” I also get really literal at times. For example, last week I mixed a green that was supposed to mimic King Sage. Unfortunately, it looked more like an herbal mud mask; so that’s what I named it. You have to be careful when you do that, though. It’s all well and good to name a color by exactly what it looks like, but you do limit your customer base when you call something “New Orleans Whorehouse Red.” Other poor choices include “Newborn Baby Poop” and “Nursing Home Taupe.”
Think you’d like to try out for that dream job? Come on in and give it a shot!