Sunday, November 16, 2008

I had to buy it


This is one of those finds that you can't really justify getting.

-- It's big--I'm talking end table big.

-- I don't have an immediate plan for how to use it.

-- It's almost $10 (I rarely spend that in 2 trips to the thrift store.)

That should have been enough reason for me to have left all 20 pounds of it in the bin. What is IT? IT is a 6 binder set of 'professional' paint swatches. Each binder is a 3 inch thick, horizontal 8.5 x 11 book. Inside each are hundreds of 8 inch square pages--each a different color of the Benjamin Moore spectrum. It's like a giant Color Aid set. Two of the binders house most of the rainbow colors. Two more are devoted entirely to magenta/red oxide/brown and sage/yellow oxide/camel (seems odd, but I guess these are probably big colors in the house paint world). Another holds nothing but taupe, gray and black and the final one consists of "Historical Colors," "America's Colors," and "Ready Mixed Colors."

Apparently, this is one of those things you get if you're an interior designer--probably for free-- from Benjamin Moore. Which of course means that Sherwin Williams and every other paint manufacturer has one. The sad part about this one is that I don't think it had ever been touched until someone picked it up to drop it off to the thrift store. I pulled out the first binder from the pristine custom box the set is housed in and, I swear, the binder cracked that cracky sound it only makes once in it's life. Nobody had ever used this. I honestly can't even image how much it costs to produce something like this. It makes me wonder how much paint a company would have to sell to make it worth their while at all. It's bizarre.

As a related side note, the aforementioned Sherwin Williams happens to be my favorite paint store because I love their swatch cards. I've been in and out of their stores locally for at least 10 years and it was only the other day when I noticed their logo. Visually, it's pretty dated, but what struck me was how crazy it seems--especially in this day and age. The logo is essentially the earth with a can of paint floating above it pouring out it's contents all over the planet. So the northern hemisphere is completely obliterated and the southern half will soon be as well. In case you were unclear on the concept, they've obligingly added "Cover the Earth." It's hard to believe they are still using this logo.

Back to the giant color aid set. So, as you've gathered, I bought the damn thing. I couldn't just let all of that colored paper go. I kept telling myself that I could use it in collage work (which I have no time for currently) or I could part it out and sell the pages on etsy or craigslist (which I have no time for currently) or I could find an art teacher that might want it (which I have no time for currently). I suspect you're noticing a theme. It sat next to my desk for a couple of days and I each day I sat next to it I was feeling worse about buying it, not because of the money, but because now I had it and something needed to be done with it. It was too cool to just give it back to the thrift store--I knew someone would appreciate it and maybe even USE it.

I was getting increasingly more annoyed with myself for having bought it and with my 3 year old for using it as a stepping stool to higher trouble-making, but as it so often does in life, it all worked out. My good friend (and color goddess) Kat stopped by one day. Since she's thrifty too, I often show her my latest scores. The instant I bent over to pick it up, I realized she was the person I had bought the thing for all along. My little brain just hadn't yet done all the processing. She teaches a class on color and uses stuff like this often in all her other classes as well. I think she's agreed to adopt it, so it looks like the "Color Preview" family of 6 will be moving in to Studio 1408. But probably after E.A.S.T.

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