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My name is Gerrie Wydeven doing-business-as Wydeven Designs. I have been conducting this small GREEN business since 2004. Wydeven Designs, based in the Atlanta, Georgia area, sells CHAIRS, LOVESEATS, CHAISES, SETTEES and other fine, well-constructed refurbished upholstered pieces. I love to travel, cook, take photographs and generally follow style and decor topics as well!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Buying Furniture Online - Color Matching

I am starting a new series (probably won't run successively) about buying furniture on-line.  Many people, including me, are nervous about buying something on-line without feeling, touching, sitting on, etc.   I am often asked if a piece is "comfortable" or "firm".  The issue of color is probably the most difficult since there are so many opportunities for distortions - far beyond individual color-seeing acuity differences.  The primary two problems are the camera used to photograph and the screen used to view.

Flash photography can cause the color to look different and also create the illusion of a sheen that is either not there or is exaggerated.  Color correctness may be hard to achieve even in natural lighting - it seems the most difficult for reds or other warm colors which often take on an orange or rosey tinge.

Viewing Screen:
Screen color displays can range widely - colors I see on different computers at home or on my iPhone or iPad all look slightly different.

Getting a swatch of the fabric is the best way to get the best view of the color.  Sometimes that is not doable or practical.  There are couple of things that help answer the questions about colors.

  1. Buy and use an Online Auction Color Chart link  This chart shows 100's of colors and allows the seller (if he/she can be convinced to use one) and the buyer to communicate more clearly about the colors in an online piece.  Even using the website has helped with some of my sales.
  2. Fabric Sample Against White
  3. Ask for additional close-up photographs of the item and, if possible, photographed near something that has a more universally known color.  For example, when asked about the level of creaminess or whiteness of a fabric, I take some photos near a white piece of paper.  I have also used Chinese red oriental rugs and traditional blue and white pottery as a counter-point for colors.

Fabric Sample Against White

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