So, do you want to see color? Do you want some really fantastic, fabulous, bright REAL color to brighten your winter day? Take a look at the work from CHROMA LAB




I’ve been following this company for over a year now, and finally got it together to submit some questions to them about their work and their process of work. Tony and Alicia were kind enough to take time out of their very busy schedule to answer my questions, and they did so very thoroughly and thoughtfully!

Here is our dialog:

Q:  What is your color process? How do you decide WHICH color to use for which piece? Intuition kind of thing? Or do certain colors scream out to be used on certain kinds of pieces?

CL:  The color is most definitely an intuition thing. We have a range of colors we like to work with generally, but as you said, we do find ourselves thinking that a certain piece needs a certain color on occasion. If a client is “new to color” (and happily, we are recruiting many of these people!) and has a piece with a classic shape, we may try a deep eggplant or another rich but subdued color. We even occasionally do black and white. Imagine that!

Q: Do you have a background in color? Have you always been fascinated by it?

CL:  Tony is a painter, so he learned to mix colors in art school and has worked as a decorative painter since then. I also went to art school, but I have been sorting things by color since I was born–you can ask my mom! We really like having a lot of bright color around us at work and at home, since it positively affects our mood.

Q:  Do YOU ever feel you’ve made a  mistake in color choice?

CL:  Once, before we started Chroma Lab, we decided on a color for our living room that ended up looking absolutely terrible on the wall. Mid-way through the paint job I piped up that I thought it was awful; Tony was relieved because he thought the same thing, so we immediately stopped and picked another color. We feel that it’s inevitable to make mistakes as you experiment with color, but as long as you listen to what your gut is saying and don’t force yourself to live with something you hate, you’ll find success!

Q:  What is your thought process in deciding which piece to restore/paint? I mean, when you see a desk, say, does it have to haave certain qualities (which?) for you to go ahead and work on it?

CL:  We like to work on pieces that have a modern feel, or on traditional pieces that can be made to feel modern with color or pattern. We like functional pieces with unusual shapes and details, and we especially like when we can salvage the cool, original hardware. All that said, when we do custom work for clients, we are happy to work on whatever they’d like redone. A lot of people come to us with things that have been in their family for years–they don’t want to sell it, but it’s not their style, so we make it fit their style.

Q:   ABOUT…… how long does it take to complete a project? Depends on what? 

CL:  It depends on the complexity of project, and it also depends on how many projects we have going on at one time. The Deep Sea Dresser on our site was about 40 hours from start to finish, while others take half that time. Patterns are time consuming but we LOVE them! 

Q:  Do you have a preference in working on old, or new, pieces?

CL:  We certainly prefer working with older pieces. We started Chroma Lab because we knew there was a lot of good furniture floating around that could be saved with a trained hand and eye. We like fixing things rather than buying new, because then we are connected to objects in a more meaningful way while reducing our impact on the environment. That’s why we only sell our furniture in Boston, too.

To conclude: I have two pieces of furniture, large and small, that I am DYING to take over to them. We agree the before and afters would be GREAT to show you all! To be continued….