Colorhouse’s Chief Color Nerd (and President!) is Puji Sherer. Puji received a B.F.A. in Painting and Ceramics from Saint Mary’s College in South Bend, IN. Upon moving to Portland, OR in her early 20s, she became the first employee of Colorhouse and has worn many hats- from sample production and customer service to sales and marketing. In her current role as President and Chief Color Nerd, Puji’s focus is on developing new Colorhouse palettes, color trend forecasting, styling and staging for our colorful photo shoots, and collaborating with our partners to create exclusive color collections.
Get to know a little more about Puji and what inspires her!
1. What are your 3 favorite things you do as Chief Color Nerd?
First and foremeost, I love to design new colors. Some of my favorite projects have been creating colors for my friends at AphroChic, and local PDX makers at Revolution Design House. Dreaming up inspiring DIY projects and collaborating with cool companies are also parts of my job that bring me great joy.
Puji creating new colors with Joe Gibson from Revolution Design House in our Portland studio.
2. Colorhouse photos have a coherent style — how would you describe it?
Simple, colorful, and inspired. I try to find a balance between creating images that have a lived-in feel but that raise the bar on creativity by including unexpected painting techniques or one-of-a-kind furniture and art pieces.
3. What is your personal design style?
I would say a combination of Old World and Modern. In my own home, I have used inspiration from frequent trips to NYC and Europe to create a rustic yet clean design aesthetic.
3. What is your fave piece of decor/furniture in your home?
My vintage green hutch from Salvage works, hands down. I love everything about it – the color, the shape, the peeling paint. It encapsulates my personal style perfectly.
4. When styling for Colorhouse photo shoots, what Portland shops do you always hit?
One of our favorite shops is color-obsessed Woonwinkel. They have unique pieces that help create eye-catching and unexpected elements in our photo shoots.
5. What advice would you give to someone trying to find their own style?
Go with what you love. If you are inspired by bright bold color even though white is everywhere in interiors, stick with color in your design. Trends will come and go, but creating a style means crafting an aesthetic that is recognizably YOU.
6. How do you get unstuck creatively?
I travel. Discovering new places and cultures jolts me out of any creative funk without fail.
This image was inspired by the worn interiors and the background of an exhibit at the Van Gogh museum a recent trip to Amsterdam.
7. Do you have any color/design rules?
I have one. Avoid painting ceilings standard ceiling white unless it is intentional. Ceilings are often an afterthought in design, but choosing a harmonious white or other color that creates a relationship with the hue on the wall can make all the difference in how a space comes together.
8. Where do you go for inspiration?
Portland is full of new restaurants that are opening all the time. I love to go to new restaurants for design inspiration as much as the food. Pinterest and Instagram are easy go-tos for quick inspiration. I am also a ceramicist, so following other artists provides quite a bit of inspiration as well.
9. Describe yourself if 3 words.
Passionate, Creative, and Positive.
10. What is your best piece of advice for someone choosing color for their home?
Test your paint color! Lighting is the greatest influencer of color, which changes from home to home. Also, undertones may be hidden in a small chip that only become visible when a color scales. What looks like the perfect blue could grow into a mint green when the yellow undertones begin to emerge through the painting process.
Puji lives in the North Portland neighborhood of St. Johns. Take a photo tour of her artful cottage.