The right color can sway your mood, change a room, and even transform a gift from “Thanks” to “Wow, I love it!” So as we put together our annual lineup of Colorado-made presents, we sought advice from local color experts to learn the theory behind the rainbow’s range—and how to use it to impress every recipient on your list.


“Green calls to mind the natural world. It could be the perfect pick for a contemplative friend.” —Donté Janae, Denver artist


“An earthy orange hue feels cozy, while a brighter version tends to elicit surprise in the recipient.” —Jeffrey Keith, oil painter and professor at the University of Denver School of Art & Art History


“Yellow is warm and light! Perfect for the people in your life who are sunny and happy.” —Suchitra Mattai, Denver artist


“Black is Sleek, sexy, and sophisticated. Absolutely classic.” —Katie Schroder, Atelier Design


“Red is a Celebratory color that attracts attention. It’s good for fiery personalities.” —Calvin Lee, RiNo painter and calligrapher


“People who gravitate toward the color blue are good to their friends, reliable, and true.” —Darrin Alfred, curator of architecture and design at the Denver Art Museum


“Brown is the color of the earth, so people who like it tend to be grounded.” —David Mesplé, artist and instructor at the Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design


“Purple is so calming and regal. It’s great for someone who loves luxury.” —KiriLeigh Jones, Denver artist

This article was originally published in 5280 November 2019.
Angela Ufheil
Angela Ufheil
Angela Ufheil is a Denver-based journalist and 5280's former digital senior associate editor.