Shopping By Color: Polyvore

Polyvore is a member based web application that allows its users to sort through uploaded images or those grabbed from around the web, to create collages for inspiration and to share with others.

The site’s main focus is fashion, but also includes interiors and whatever else people can come up with. Filter through the images by garment or accessory type, brand and color. With the color sorter it would seemingly make it very easy to put together the perfect outfit palette, making it a useful tool for any color lover.


Polyvore was founded by ex-Yahoo executive Pasha Sadri. While branded as fun creative collage site that makes use of the infinite amounts of content available on the web, Polyvore also allows its users to shop the products that they use in their collages. Click on any item, and a product description will appear along with the original link where the item can be found.

The direct engagement of real products and brands with its users is some what of a dream for marketers, as the model is basically user-generated advertising.

Images from User -Maarit-(I’m back!): link & link

“Pasha … came up with the idea for Polyvore about a year and a half ago. His inspiration for the application came from the observation that there is an enormous amount of content on the web today that isn’t being used in any kind of creative way. It also came from his desire as an engineer to build an application that was cool, useful and had broad appeal (he actually has a knack for doing this, as he also developed Yahoo! Trip Planner and Yahoo! Pipes while working at Yahoo!). Together with Guangwei Yuan and Jianing Hu, two other ex-Yahoo! engineers, he founded Polyvore.

The name “Polyvore” is actually something that Pasha came up with many years ago – and since they had built a tool that could sort of “consume” anything, it seemed to fit. (Users can bring any image on the web into Polyvore with our Clipper tool) The founders’ initial thought for was that it would be a place to just prototype this idea – but their prototype became so popular that they decided to stick with it. Over the past year, Polyvore has grown tremendously, now having over 160,000 members all over the world.”

Images from Users *Sara* & barbie

A Polyvore employee says what makes the site popular – even though she notes there was little promotion or marketing – is that it’s easy to use yet addictive. According to the site’s stats she shared, Polyvore has 30 million monthly page views, and an average visit session time of over 8 minutes. Users – which at Polyvore are around 70% female – so far have create over a million collage sets.

Another fun collage web app to waste some time with is collage machine.

Thanks to Audrey for the tip.

Author: evad
David Sommers has been loving color as COLOURlovers' Blog Editor-in-Chief for the past two years. When he's not neck deep in a rainbow he's loving other things with The Post Family (, a Chicago-based art blog, artist collective & gallery.