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3 R’s – Recycle, Reuse, Renew

Posted by Cecilia Walker on


Or should I say, Recycle, Reuse, REPAINT!  In our New Year’s efforts to organize and de-clutter, we tend to do a lot of purging.  Purging can lead to unnecessary waste, which, let’s face it, can make some of us sick to our stomachs when we think about adding to our landfills.  As we attack our closets, garages, basements and attics, what can we do to reduce our carbon footprint?  I know of a company who is trying to help local communities do just this.  In three words…The Paint Exchange.

What is The Paint Exchange?  Currently, they are the only recycled paint manufacturer in the state of Massachusetts.  The Paint Exchange takes latex interior paint that would otherwise go to waste (or worse, end up in landfills or pollute our waterways) and they process it into paint for sale.  How do you recycle paint, you ask?  Their recycled paint is created from surplus paint that is brought to their shop for reuse.  It is then inspected, to confirm its suitability for recycling and is treated to ensure against damage from microbial contamination.  The process requires them to triple strain, re-blend and repackage their paint.  The result is a premium latex paint which contains at least 99.5% post consumer material;  is naturally low in Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs); and – because it’s collected, produced and sold locally, thereby minimizing its impact on the environment – IS “green” (though do take note, the paint is offered in a variety of paint colors too, including the shade of green).

I love the black paint cans and The Paint Exchange labels.  The name of their premium 100% recycled latex paint, “rECOlor” is so clever, highlighting “eco,” and each can has a sample of the paint color actually painted onto the front of the label.  This soft palette of colors above (from left to right) are called “Chalk” (grey), “Professor Plum” (muddied purple – and please tell me you’ve all played Clue at some point in your lives?!) and “Relax” (soft blue) – and do just that, relax and soothe.

Even with surplus paint, they are able to mix a beautiful variety of colors.  These are brighter than the 3 above:

(left to right) “Victoria” (green), “Bloom” (honeysuckle pink) and “Pleasing” (blue). 

The shop has a wide selection of custom paint colors (this is just a section of one wall, but there was an even bigger wall filled with paints to the left of me)…

However, while custom paint colors cannot be duplicated to match exactly, The Paint Exchange does re-blend large quantities of paint and offers 2-gallon as well as 5-gallon containers for larger projects.

A local, seaside, home and gift shop, The Welch Company (one of my all time favorite shops filled with beautiful furnishings, linens, home accessories, and gifts all with a coastal flair), also sells the Paint Exchange paint, but under their own private label.

Gorgeous paint label, don’t you agree?  And the paint color too!  This particular one is called “Sea Glass” and is one of the colors in The Welch Company’s Coastal Color Collection.  The other paint colors look just as beautiful as they sound;  Marina, Dune Grass, Surf, Driftwood and Sandcastle.  These colors are actually painted on the walls inside the shop, and coordinate with every item in the store.

For more information about the recycling and disposing of your paint, and The Paint Exchange products and services (they also sell hand painted, refurbished furniture, hand painted accessories, and offer faux-painting as well as design services) visit their website here.  If you would like to inquire about wholesale or private label opportunities, please contact Katharine Brown or Tania Keeble at 781.545.1272.

You can get up-to-date information and photos on their Facebook page.  The Paint Exchange also has a blog and for a good laugh, read this post called “New Orleans Whorehouse Red…” on how they name their paint colors.  I enjoyed it, because, in my past product-development life, I had to name shoes.

all photos by ei3s with permission from The Paint Exchange and The Welch Company


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