The Color Run And Some Powdered Art For The Hall

Feel free to file this under “a small house-related project that we did while enjoying a little – well it was actually pretty big – local event.” You already know Sherry and I are trying to embrace color more in this house, but this weekend I might have taken things a bit too far…

That’s my “after” Instagram photo following a 5K race that my younger sister and I did this weekend called Color Me Rad. I’m not sure what maniacal genius came up with the concept, but it was awesome. Basically you and your white t-shirt run 3.1 miles while people periodically douse you in technicolor cornstarch. They’re being held all over the country (along with a similar even called The Color Run) and it was – well, I’ll let our matching temporary tattoos explain:

Here’s my sister Carrie and I before the race. So clean. So naive.

Sherry was on cheering/Clara duty, but decided to get in on the action in her own colorful way. She grabbed a blank canvas and brought it along in the hopes of capturing a little abstract art while she spectated.

And just so you believe that she was actually there (we realized that when she carries the camera she’s never in photos), here’s a shot of us meeting a blog reader named Katherine, who was kind enough to snap this photo and share it with us on Facebook. Sherry wants me to note that she’s not too cool for school in her shades, she’s just a weirdo who didn’t realize that it wasn’t that sunny – and only later looked at this picture and blushed for wearing them before the sun started pounding down on us…

… which eventually did happen around 9am. And despite it being pretty early in the morning, the place felt like Mardi Gras. Well, except instead of beads it was packets of cornstarch being thrown around. Before we even left the start line our shirts (and faces) were already sporting some color.

Oh yeah, and those sunglasses were part of the race packet we got when we registered. You know, so we can all look more like a weird band of brothers (and sisters) running through colored powder. Ok, they were really to help keep said powder out of our eyes.

Fun fact: the guy in green shorts below is the guy at The Tile Shop who sold us our kitchen penny tile. He’s also the person that doused my stomach in orange before the start. I guess I should be glad it wasn’t grout or something.

Here we are actually coming in for our big finish… and getting sprayed with a packet of yellow powder that my dad tossed at us.

And here we are learning our lesson to keep our mouths closed.

Carrie and I actually remained pretty clean (relatively speaking) up to this point. Lots of people were practically rolling in powder by the end (we saw one guy literally rolling in it at one checkpoint). But the cleanliness all changed right after Sherry snapped the photo above. Because that’s when we ran through the finish line. The photo below isn’t mine, it’s my friend Lauren’s (thanks Lauren!) but it perfectly captures what finishing the race felt like.

Which is why we ended the race looking like this. Well, this is after we rinsed it out of our teeth.

Despite the complete and utter mess-fest that was the racecourse, Sherry and Clara managed to stay pretty darn clean. Clara’s stroller did get doused with a dusting of orange, but that’s about it.

Well, that and there were a few cookie crumbs on her face – though we can’t blame the race for that (it was all my mom, showing up at 9am with fresh baked cookies). Although if there were a race where they threw cookies at you, I’d totally be game.

And since Sherry’s canvas also stayed pretty clean, we took matters into her own hands (and by matters I mean powder on the ground) and pelted it with all the colors we could find. Not exactly a masterpiece, but making it was pretty fun.

We actually preferred the look of it more once Sherry shook some of the excess powder off of it.

Then it started to rain a bit on our way back to the car, so some of the lighter colors washed off the canvas. And by the time we got home and hung it up it was looking completely different once again.

Overall we thought it was a fun little project with a cool story behind it. We’ll need to seal it with some sort of sealant spray to keep it for the long run, so we’ll share that update if and when we get ‘er done.

Actually, if there were any keepsake from the day that was truly representative of the madness (radness?), it’d be my shirt.

I mean, wouldn’t this look pretty cool behind a frame? Sherry insisted on snapping this photo because if nothing else we could get this printed and frame it to remember the whole color-riffic morning.

And I’m so glad she took that photo because between the light rain on our way out and me taking it off before sitting in the car, the nice speckled pattern started to turn into more of a streaky blob. And that blobbiness was only made worse when I attempted to preserve the color using Color Me Rad’s suggestion: soak in vinegar and then iron (since normal washing and drying would  supposedly remove, rather than seal in the color). By the end of it all, the shirt was looking more like this:

Still colorful? Yes. But it’s looking more like a poor tie-dye attempt, which isn’t really the look we’re going for around here (blacklight anyone?). So I’ll probably hang on to the shirt as a spare work shirt, but don’t expect to see it in a frame anytime soon. But that doesn’t mean some of our photos won’t make it behind frames. Like this one perhaps…

Or maybe this one of the villainous variety. This is the shot that Sherry took after telling me it looked like I had a mustache.

I was totally channeling Littlefinger from Game of Thrones.

Anyone else do a Color Me Rad or Color Run in their town? Or have one on the calendar still to come? Or perhaps you’ve participated in some other crazy event like this? We’re always looking for rad new things to do so please share! Update: Since folks have been asking how I started running, how I train, what races I do, and all of that stuff I’m planning a running post about that sometime soon (sure we like to stick to home stuff, but every once in a while we go off the beaten path like: DIY haircuts? check. the best spam comment ever? check. a weird dream Sherry had? check.)

Psst- Who watched the Design Star finale? Did you think the right person won? Are you going to watch their show? Did you love Hilari as much as we did? Any and all TV thoughts are welcome (you know we love to park it on the couch and watch other people paint/decorate while we sit on our buns and blog the night away).


  1. gia says

    That’s awesome! Love the canvas.

    I was hoping you guys would comment on design star this year! Hilari was my favorite as well and I was sorry to see her go home. I hope HGTV sees her potential and she’ll get her own show anyway! Danielle and Brittany are talented designers, but Hilari has the personality for TV!

  2. Valentina says

    When I saw that white canvas, I thought Sherry would let John hold it while running to capture the random splashes along the way!

    • says

      Yeah we thought about that but the idea of carrying a canvas throughout the race for John was kind of a burden, so I was happy to be on canvas/Clara duty while John ran!


  3. Ingeborg says

    This looks like too much fun! Just wondering, do you run as well, Sherry?

    Glad to see the Game of Thrones reference, I’m kind of hooked to the show and the books. And I must say you DO look like Littlefinger right there :)

    • says

      Oh no, I’m in charge of cheering with Clara and John’s parents. Haha. I like to say that I only run when I’m being chased (but sadly that’s not true anymore, because lately I have been running after Clara a lot- haha).


  4. Amy says

    Running the one up here in Boston on Sunday. Pretty excited, especially after your re-cap and pics!! Now I just need to find a white t-shirt…

  5. says

    That looks like SO much fun! I love the idea of bringing a canvas for Clara. I have no idea where you guys find the extra time to run, you are always doing something!

  6. Deb D. says

    Good stuff! I think the photos of you in your shirt are wall-worthy! Just saying. When you post on running/training can you also include some tips on being a supportive partner?! ;-) My husband is starting his training for the Philadelphia marathon next week (he’s already been running to get in shape) and I’m so excited for him, but know he’s going to have ups and downs during the training process. I’m not a runner, so would love to hear your thoughts on that, too. Thanks!

    • says

      Thanks for the suggestion Deb, I’ll try to work that in. Sherry generally is just really understanding that it’s something I like to do (and it makes me more balanced and happier I think) so she’s supportive if I decide to go for a run in the morning, and I try not to be as much of a burden by bringing Clara with me in the jogging stroller if Sherry has a lot of work to do while I’m gone.


  7. Rebekah says

    OK, So I was supposed to run in that race with Katherine from the photo (We went to college together (and she is the one who told me about your blog)), but we got our wires crossed and I registered for thecolorrun instead (seriously, two color runs in Richmond?)
    I am bummed that I didn’t get to potentially meet you guys!

  8. says

    They just had on in the Boston area – and my sister did not want to do that as part of her bachlorette party, oh well. I’m totally down for that cookie run – let me know when and where!

  9. Katie V says

    I’m so excited that you guys did this! My hubbs and I did the Color Run in Dallas back in March, and Color Me Rad is coming here in a month or so. We are so excited to run again!

    Our souvenir happened to be on our shoes… they were perfectly sprinkled with bits of the rainbow (and wont come off!)so thats a great & unexpected momento :)

  10. Katie Gifford says

    I’m doing the Color Run on Saturday in Boston! Thank you so much for posting this, Im now even more excited!
    Great idea about the canvas, may bring some for my little ones to use at the race. Thanks!

  11. says

    Are either of you participating in The Color Run in Richmond on September 15? Do you have any hotel/sightseeing recommendations for out-of-towners?

    • says

      We’re not sure we can do that one since the book comes out this fall and we have tour stuff starting in Sept/Oct/Nov, but if any other locals are doing it or have hotel recommendations for Erin that would be great! We also have a post about a bunch of favorite sightseeing things in Richmond here for ya.


  12. Karen says

    I did the Richmond run Saturday as well!! It was awesome!! I found that the hardest crevices to get the color out were my ears and my armpits (tmi?)

    Overall it was a complete blast and I am so glad I decided to do it!

  13. kella says

    totally just did the color run in ypsilanti last weekend with a bunch of friends! i’m still trying to get the pink out of my hair, but it was so worth it!! my new year’s resolution was to run an actual 5k, and this was a perfect race to try first. i’d highly recommend it to anyone! so. much. fun. !!!!!! :)

    • WendyMI says

      Ooh, so did I! Left the color in for the fun of it (it helped also to celebrate my bday! heh)

      I’m still in the run/walk phase of my Couch to 5K program so that’s how I approached this day. So fun, so so messy! I wonder if Color Me Rad is coming to our area?

  14. lns says

    that looks like so much fun! good for you!
    about design star… i wish Brittany would’ve won. i love her style and she’s been a strong contestant all along. oh well…

  15. Erin says

    I so wanted to do this while it was in CA, but my husband had some serious hesitations about paying to run in a race and have people throw things at us – I am going to show him this post and hopefully it will change his mind!!

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