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Balsam Lake Hardware Goes Visual With Stain

Paint is a top department at Balsam Lake Hardware & Rental in Balsam Lake, Wisconsin, and owner Angie Nelson understands the importance of visual aids for choosing colors.

She takes pride in matching paint and wood stain colors for customers, and she has a natural eye for it. If a shopper brings in a colorful quilt, she can look at the blanket and create a paint color to match it.

“I color match by eyeballing it,” Nelson says.

Her wood stain section shows her understanding of the importance of seeing before creating. Against the shelves, she has leaned boards hand-stained in sections by her staff and labeled in marker with what color the stain is.

Customers can compare pieces of woodwork or furniture they need a stain to match, and if they don’t find what they’re looking for, Nelson can create a match herself.

Nelson’s solution with the boards is an easy one any retailers could try if they want to give their customers better visuals than color blocks printed in a manufacturer’s flier.

About Kate Klein

Kate is profiles editor for Hardware Retailing magazine. She reports on news and industry events and writes about retailers' unique contributions to the independent home improvement sector. She graduated from Cedarville University in her home state of Ohio, where she earned a bachelor's degree in English and minored in creative writing. She loves being an aunt, teaching writing to kids, running, reading, farm living and, as Walt Whitman says, traveling the open road, “healthy, free, the world before me.”

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