• ochre colors and earths
  • French organisation for the promotion of ochres and coloured earths

  • shades of ocher

frequently asked questions

Where does one find ochres?

Our booklets contain different address books to help you find where to buy ochres and coloured earths (almost all can be bought by mail order).  

For recipes on how to make ochre paint, which booklets by Terres & Couleurs do you recommend and where can they be obtained?

"Le petit guide illustré de la peinture à l’ocre pour le bois" (“The short illustrated guide to painting with ochre on wood” – available for the moment in French only) gives the recipe for paint on wood, which should be of help. You will find other recipes in: "Ocres et Terres, secrets d'ateliers" (“Ochres and earths, workshop secrets”), and "Le petit guide illustré de la chaux" (“The short illustrated guide to lime” - available for the moment in French only). The booklets can be purchased through www.terresetcouleurs.com. They are also available in a number of bookstores (in Paris: Le Moniteur, Eyrolles, Musée du Louvre bookstore, Sennelier, and other outlets).

How long will it take to receive an answer or an order?

Covid 19, we mail orders every day.

How is the organisation funded?

The organisation does not receive public subsidies. We fund 100% of our actions through the sale of our booklets.

How do communities apply to become candidates for future "Local colours" events?

We are able to intervene wherever needed, however our specifications are quite demanding (including traces of old ochre paints, sufficient number of work sites, presence of historical buildings and monuments, satisfactory food and lodging for volunteers). You may formulate a request by sending us a dossier (with pictures) by mail. Note that our organisation does not intervene on individual properties. Every intervention is a global project for a community as a whole.

How does one become a member of the organisation?
Is it possible to volunteer for a future "Local colours" event?

Our organisation has 150 members and we want to keep it small and manageable.
To apply to volunteer for a future event, please send us your contact details. We would be delighted to add you to our list, subject to available places. 

Can one apply ochre paint on untreated, painted or varnished wood?

The paint must be applied to untreated aged wood. For other types of wood, please refer to "The short illustrated guide to modern day recipes".

Should the wood be stripped? If so, how?

Manual or mechanical are the best stripping methods; it is less aggressive. If you use a chemical product (use a sodium-based product rather than dissolvent-based one) wash thoroughly and brush the wood surface before painting.

How long it is possible to keep the ochre paint?

The ochre paint can be kept for one or two weeks provided it is not in contact with the air (close the container well). Mix well before using it again. Prepare the paint immediately before use.

What mix of paints was used on Saint-Andoche basilica in Saulieu?

The wood was painted with a mix of red ochre and hematite (roughly half-half). The metalwork was painted using the ochre paint recipe - a mix of mineral black and some titanium white.

Is it possible to prepare white ochre paints?

There is no white ochre. Synthetic pigments do not have the same properties as ochres. Hence, we do not prepare white paints.

Does blue ochre paint exist?
And green ochre paint?

No, blue ochre does not exist. Green ochre exists but is rare.

Is it possible to watch the "Des Racines & des Ailes" programme again?

Yes, you can find it on our website: www.terresetcouleurs.com

Is it possible to pay via bank transfer?

Yes, please contact us by email. 

Where can I find other books written by Félicien Carli?

You can find the "Short history of architecture" collection on various French cities on the éditions du cardo website: www.editionsducardo.fr. The guides also exist in English. 

How do I contact Terres et Couleurs?

By email at info@terresetcouleurs.com or by postal mail. We will get back to you as soon as possible.