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. Kayt says

    Congrats on the race! Those looks like so much fun!

    And OMG, I really really reallllllly wanted Hilari to win. She was miles away my favorite. Although I think that of the two finalists, Danielle’s show seemed more interesting and she came across as more sincere to me. Neither one was bad, but when the final pause before the annoucement came, I found myself a little upset imagining Britany winning.

  2. Brenda says

    I have several friends who ran in the Color Run in the Twin Cities a few weeks ago. I have some other friends who are going to do a Glow Run coming up, where you basically wear glow sticks head to toe and then there’s a dance party at the finish line.

  3. Katie says

    This has nothing to do with your run…I love the concept of it though, and the wonderful creativity in bringing a canvas, but I had a side question that I thought of last night…

    In your home, do you paint your ceiling any special color? Are all your ceilings the same, or do you pick colors to go with the room? I’d love some insight.

    • says

      We love to paint ceilings a lighter shade than the walls, the same shade as the walls (this works well in a small space so things aren’t as broken up) or a complementary shade (like how we’d like a soft blue ceiling in our moody gray bedroom). We just bring home swatches to see what we like and tape them on the ceiling to decide.


  4. Jen C says

    Looks like fun! Your canvas looks like it could be a good candidate for a project like this:

    You could even write color me rad! :)

  5. Brittany says

    Totally bummed with the Designstar finale!!! I was a hugeee Hilary fan (not from the beginning though, it actually took me a while to warm up to her, but she had the best camera presence.) Not a Danielle fan at all and I definitely did not think she was going to win. :(

  6. Allison says

    My boyfriend and I did the Color Run with his brother who came to visit in San Francisco about two weeks ago! I actually hate running, but the idea of being all crazy colored at the end was enough motivation to convince me. It was so much fun!

    Seriously though, they need to get Hilari a tv show. Unfortunately I don’t know if I’ll be watching Danielle’s show (and I don’t know if I would have watched Britany’s either). Please oh please put Hilari back on tv!

  7. Adrienne says

    You are the cutest family ever! You always do the funnest (yes, it is a word, ha) activities! And of course you come home with a perfectly executed project from your fun activity. Love you guys.

  8. Steph says

    I did the Color Run in Philly a couple weekends ago, SO much fun! I haven’t washed my shirt yet (since a few other people had the same results as yours with the vinegar and ironing method) so I’m honestly thinking about just framing it without washing it instead of trying to wash and wear it.
    That mustache is cracking me up because my mom had one just like it and we were hysterical at it!
    (my mom is the one with the hilarious mustache in the middle, obviously!)
    I can’t wait for your running post! I just started running about a year and a half ago, have done some half marathons and signed up for the Marine Corps Marathon this October as my first full, I’m equal parts terrified and excited!

  9. says

    Some friends and I did the color run in KC last month… and it was so much fun! We too were disappointed that our shirts didn’t maintain the fun splattered look after the vinegar/iron treatment. Glad you took lots of pictures, you guys are so fun!

  10. Kristin says

    I did the Color Me Rad race in Utah back in April with a bunch of girls in my neighborhood. For some it was their first 5k. It’s such a fun race. There were so many “teams” there decked out in fun outfits. We just painted our team name on the back of white t-shirts. It was nice to be able to find each other in the huge crowd.
    I love the canvas idea. Maybe next year.

  11. says

    This is one of my favorite posts! Decorating is all about filling your home with things you love and that remind you of experiences. The idea to bring the canvas was brilliant and the outcome is awesome!

  12. cara says

    I hate running but if they had this race around my area I would do it! I am doing a 5K obstacle course to benefit Habitat for Humanity in September. It looks really crazy, mud pits to crawl through, big foam filled bounce houses, etc. Should be fun! I think the canvas looks better after the rain, especially with the colors of your house.

  13. says

    John, I always love your running posts, either here, or on YHLife. Bring on the big one! I have a running question: did you find it difficult to transition to running with a jogging stroller? I have had a HARD time–but I’m only 5 feet tall, and wonder if it’s my height (strollers are made for taller people!) Do you still squeeze in some regular runs without the stroller?

    • says

      Yes, it’s a lot of work to push that thing! But over time I think I have adjusted so it’s not as bad. I definitely try to run without it and with it, so I don’t get too used to just doing one or the other.


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