For the past several weeks, my wife and I have been updating our living room with new upholstery for the couch, new carpeting and different paint on the walls. As we sorted through hundreds of color chips for paint and many scrapbooks for upholstery and carpet, I became fascinated by the dizzying array of names for the colors you can select.
In the end, we selected a color called “magic dove” for the cushions on our couch, “calm” for the carpet color and “anew gray” for the accent walls. The rest of the walls are what I would call a “slightly off white” color, although I can’t find the official title of the color that we have used for years on most of our interior walls.
For our accent walls, we wanted something that was what I would call a light taupe — I would describe it as “a warm light gray trending toward tan.” I’m not sure the “anew gray” quite got what I wanted, but it’s on the walls now and I don’t think I’m interested in redoing it.
As we looked over the various shades of “taupe.” we found these breathlessly named offerings: “rumor,” “stone lion,” Italian straw,” “fortitude,” “mercurial,” hibernate,” “whirlwind,” “sweater weather” and my favorite, “skipping rocks.” There were literally hundreds more.
I recently read an article about jobs that most people don’t know exist, like creating bar code designs or naming medicines. Here’s another one — somebody, somewhere, has the job of coming up with names for each of the thousands and thousands of color samples for various fabric, paint and carpeting offerings.
So I’ve decided to try my hand in naming some shades of taupe that I did not see on the color chips. Here goes:
“Topiary Taupe” — with a touch of green to mimic those sculptured bushes.
“Tuscan Taupe” — with splotches of marinara red sauce and pesto green sauce.
“Torrential Taupe” — tending toward a blue with darker gray, as in a rain storm.
“Tawdry Taupe” — a bit more blushing pink cast.
“Whipped Cream Tauping” — an almost white shade that smells like Redi-Whip.
“Trucker’s Taupe” — mixed with a light scent of diesel fumes and a sooty look.
“Temporary Taupe” — the color fades away shortly after you paint it on the wall.
“Iso-taupe” — gives off a faint green glow at night.
And my favorite: “Warm Light Gray Trending Toward Tan.”