Profile: Meet Benjamin Moore’s Color Manager

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LaConte-Magno ’00 and Benjamin Moore vice president Carl Minchew arrive in Chicago for a trends presentation.

If you selected Benjamin Moore paint in the last 10 years, chances are Andrea LaConte-Magno ’00 had a lot to do with your choice. And her inspiration may have come from an unlikely place. In the world of color, this year’s spatula hue could influence next year’s chic shade.

As color and design studio manager for Benjamin Moore, LaConte-Magno leads a team that is always seeking inspiration for fresh home decor colors. The company’s color trends card, a palette of about 23 colors drawn from the larger collection of 3,500, is one of her team’s flagship projects each year. They travel to trade shows, such as Maison et Objet, Paris, and Salone de Mobile, Milan, comb through magazines, observe fashion runways, and attend museum exhibits.

The 2015 card is anchored by shades of green—think pine, olive, grass, split pea—in an overall family that includes beige, rose, and blues.

“Good use of color is so important,” she says. “We often refer to the color on the wall as the ‘envelope’ for the room—it may be the ‘main event’ or the ‘backup singer,’ depending on how it relates to other materials and elements in the room. In either case, it can make or break the space.”

The habit of discipline for creative work was honed at Lafayette. She fine-tuned her artistic abilities under the guidance of Jim Toia, director of community-based teaching, and learned to adjust details in graphic designs from Lew Minter, retired director of the media lab.
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“It is incredible how bits and pieces from my courses help me with a variety of creative projects,” she says. An art and English graduate, she holds an associate degree from New York School of Interior Design and is pursuing an MBA at University of Scranton.

She is the sister of Greg LaConte ’03; their father is Thomas LaConte ’70.

—Kate Helm