Proud Cumbria: Perfect Brand Colours
Mark Starrs, the master colour blender in the technical laboratory at James Cropper, develops colour recipes using dyes and pigments used in creating the luxury papers which the company makes for customers around the world.
"Obviously, when we are making colours for world famous brands, it's vital that they perfectly fit their brand colours.
"The colours brands use are their signature and need to be consistent and immediately recognisable. I work with my team every day making sure our products measure up to the exacting standards of some of the biggest global brands. We pride ourselves on being able to recreate any colour our customers ask for.
"We use rigorous colour matching, testing processes and advanced technologies - whether we are working with paper or moulded paper packaging. These have been developed over decades and are unrivalled anywhere in the world.
"Many factors can affect colour quality and consistency in end use and many processes are involved in working towards a perfect product. The skill of our team is absolutely crucial - we test our own eyesight on a regular basis to gauge how we are viewing colour. We have colour tests for anyone making decisions on colour to see if their eyes have any colour deficiency.
"One key area of our work is light fastness - how quickly colours fade, or change shade when they are exposed to light. As a brand the last thing you want is your product fading when it is on display - we do everything possible to control that process. The way colour appears or is perceived can also change under certain types of light. For example, it might look different under the lights in a department store to how it does in bright sunlight.
"We use machinery to recreate these light sources during testing. They can can also be used to mimic the type of light found in different parts of the world - and how it will affect products over time. For example, we can mimic exposure to northern hemisphere sunlight over the course of 20 hours, but we can do this in just two hours using the equipment in our lab.
"Once we have achieved the colour that is as consistent, vivid and enduring as our customers require we can then upscale what we do in the lab and apply it to the process of making the product in larger quantities."
Find out more about our colour lab here: https://www.jamescropper.com/about/innovation/colour-lab