Paints & Coatings Resource Center

Ask the Expert Question-and-Answer Archive

by Ron Joseph

November, 2005

Establishing Color Standards

Q. I am an architectural color designer. While there are many paint colors to choose from, there are many that I would like to select but cannot find. How could I begin to make my own paint/paint colors to create the colors I seek?

A. You need to work with a paint formulator to specially formulate the colors that you want. The pigments must be chosen so that the colors can be reproduced on a repeated basis, and they must have the exterior or interior performance properties that are appropriate for the type of exposure they will encounter. Once you and the paint formulator have agreed on the colors that he/she has formulated, you can establish your own color standard so that the paint can be replicated by any paint company.

Designing and standardizing special colors can be expensive, but it is well worth the effort if the paints will be used on large projects, or will be used frequently.

If you wish to go forward with such a project we can assist you on a consulting basis, and we charge an hourly rate. We would not formulate the colors, but find formulators who are equipped to do so.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Best wishes,

Ron Joseph

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