Stiletto Woman/Devine Color & Gretchen Schauffler
1. Your Name: Gretchen Schauffler
2. Your Website or Blog: DevineColor.com & gretchenschauffler.com
4. Provide your professional bio: When Devine Color Founder Gretchen Schauffler was 10 years old, her mother moved the family from San Juan, Puerto Rico to Portland, Oregon. While living in the Pacific Northwest, Gretchen craved the vibrant colors of Puerto Rico, where buildings are brightly hued and the Caribbean Ocean sparkles with blues and greens. To express herself and stay tied to her roots, she began incorporating color into her home.
An artist, Gretchen experimented with a collage technique that helped her create color compositions with anything from paper to texture to paint. People who visited her home loved her unique combinations. Her colors exuded personality, expression and understanding. All the colors seemed to belong together.
It didn't take long for word to get out about Gretchen's color consulting and her unique color philosophy. Every time Gretchen worked with a client, she gathered samples of the wood, pillows, curtains and other adornments in their homes. With this inspiration, she would then create color palettes at her home, not theirs. The color collections Gretchen made proved to be the perfect background for her clients’ furnishings. She artfully connected their belongings with the purpose of wall color. This is how she began to understand that not every color gets to be on a wall, just like not every color should be on your lips.
Searching through thousands of paint colors in typical fans decks led to frustration instead of inspiration, so Gretchen began to make her own paint colors. Devine Color was born when she took the six gorgeous colors of the rainbow and began creating 12 unique palettes. By neutralizing, transforming and enhancing those palettes, Gretchen created more supporting palettes including Pacific Trail MixTM, Valley Vineyards and Spices, Ocean Tide PoolsTM and more.
Today Gretchen serves as the Creative Director of Devine Color, which has grown to include 209 trend-proof luminous hues organized into 19 inspiring collections. The creamy wall coatings are available at DevineColor.com, Target and Target.com, and Amazon.com.
· Tell us about your business, and when did you launch: Launched in 2001 regionally/2012 nationally. Devine Color is dedicated to empowering designers and homeowners to create a story of light and color the way they imagined it. Every paint company has great paint but offers different things. I always say that the paint world is a boy's club: Ben, Sherwin, Ralph, then me, girl. Gretchen. I combine an artistic soul with female sensibility to deliver a smart eco line that is rooted in deep color satisfaction. I create wall colors in an artistic fashion that along with light-captivating formulas change color into ambience. My Discovery Cards engage intuition to let you recognize colors you love and want to live in your home. Devine Color is a unique brand experience in the paint industry.
· How did you transition from employee to entrepreneur, what was that like? I got pregnant with my first child and I quit my job to stay home and raise my kids. While pursuing this purpose, I combined my artistic abilities and color expertise with the skills I had learned as a successful pharmaceutical sales rep to make a little extra money on the side. I began to sell my ability as a colorist to craft colors in an artistic fashion for walls. From there Devine Color took a life of it’s own.
· Tell us what has or who has influenced your life the most (and why?) I have to say that my husband and my children have had the most influence in my life. They challenge me to be my best self. We strongly believe in mentoring each other and ourselves as a family. I have several books that I owe a tremendous amount of gratitude for how their wisdom enhanced my ideology of life: Emotional Intelligence, The alchemist, The Tipping Point, Mere Christianity, The Power of Now, The Artist Way, just to name a few.
· How do you define success? The ability to find balance between living a satisfying and meaningful present while creating a rich and purposeful future.
· How are you living courageously and confidently? By living accountably. What you do and why you do it must be explained in the simplest of ways so that it can be understood not only by you, but others. It takes courage to continually clarify your own intention and purpose in a clear fashion rather than blame, resent, or neglect situations or people when conflict arises. Accountability leaves less room for truth to be personalized.
· What have you learned from your journey thus far? That you have to be a part of a ”tribe” that believes in mutual principles and values, and share a vision of destiny. Going against your own instincts on how an intellectual and emotional culture and community should function is futile. Respecting yourself and others allows you to acknowledge that not everyone will be part of the same tribe, and that is a good thing.
· What would you like to accomplish in the next 3-5 years? What's your vision? Devine Color will continue to be a lifestyle brand that creates imaginative and exciting ways to engage consumer intuition with color. My color philosophy and expertise can enrich the shopping experience of other home décor products. But I am not kidding when I say I would like to create new car color combinations. Enough of those bad blues, don’t you think? I want to also finish and publish a book I am writing about destiny, and become fluent in French.
· What keeps you inspired personally? Curiosity. I am curious by nature and it is a characteristic that keeps me engaged in what’s next, and why.
· If do-overs were allowed, what would you re-try again? I don’t know how else I would have gotten here, so I gracefully decline the do-over. However, I would like to live a long and healthy life in the future.
· What has been your biggest challenge (professional/personal)? How do you manage the obstacle? How intuitive entrepreneurial leadership is managed in traditional operational-driven environments. Innovation and originality require speed and corporations are like tankers, slow to steer.
· What advice would you give career women or entrepreneurs? For every dream there is an interpreter. If you have a dream find those who can interpret the dream into a reality and stay away from those who want to change it to fit their own reality.