A Color Story Is Here!

A Color Story is here!! Download in the App Store now! It’s finally here!! A Color Story is now available in the iOS App Store and it’s FREE!

If you want to go frantically download it RIGHT NOW, we get it…we can wait.

Here are the main features and some examples of how we have been using A Color Story. All the photos below have been edited using only the app:

We were able to replicate our favorite color balancing techniques from Photoshop exactly in this app, making a wide range of filters that can be used as 1-tap editing for your photos!

2 Joy Ride*Image by @elsielarson edited with Joy Ride from Chroma pack

Colors that pop! (Breezy from Blush pack in A Color Story App)*Image by @KeikoLynn edited with Breezy from the Blush pack

One of our top priorities was creating filters that make your colors REALLY pop. And with so many options to choose from, there are a ton of really interesting variations within the packs! This lends itself to a LOT of creative freedom!

Before-After edited with #AColorStory App*Image by @Laura_Elizabeth edited with Summer from the Chroma pack (yes, just one tap, and it makes such a HUGE difference!)

A lot of filters we’ve used in the past change, tint or dull color instead of enhancing it. It was extremely important to us to create filters that enhance color, rather than covering it up!

A Color Story has over 20 toolsOVER 20 FREE TOOLS, INCLUDING CURVES

And for the photos that need just a little more fine-tuning, we’ve included over 20 tools that you can use to get it exactly right—including fully functioning curves that even allow you to target RGB. All of the tools in the app come completely free without purchasing a thing.

Kitchen-before-after*Image by @elsielarson edited Bright + Contrast (Tools) and Ice Ice from the Essentials pack. 

When it comes to iPhone photos, there’s no such thing as “perfect lighting”. It always needs a bit of a boost! So the go-to tools make it really easy to brighten your photo along with the many filters that brighten for you.

A Color Story effects can be moved and blend with your photo!*Image by @mandimakes edited with Flare 7 from the Flare & Bokeh effects pack

Light Leaks*Image by @ArielleVey edited with Light Leak 9 from the Light Leaks effect pack.


We have three really cool effects packs: Flare & Bokeh, Light Leaks and Color Fog. These effects are built from multiple layers of shapes and color blending at different modes to make them truly part of your photo. And each of these effects can be moved and rotated with your fingers, so you can customize your photos and make them look and feel natural.

A Color Story lets you create custom filtersCREATE AND SAVE CUSTOM FILTERS

Like the edits you just made? Save them as your own custom filter at any point. The history menu in the bottom left will always help you keep track of your edits, and the SAVED feature will let you repeat a whole set of steps on a new photo with just one tap.

If you haven’t seen our video yet, you can get a feel for all the functionality here!



A Color Story App*Image by @ArielleVey edited with Soft & Bright from the Organic Pack. 

Alright, guys! We really need your help! Please send this app to friends who haven’t heard about it yet. We really want to get the word out this week!! And if you like the app, please leave us a review on the App Store. It helps us so much! xx- Elsie

Follow A Color Story on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook!

*Android version coming SOON. It’s in the final stages of testing now. We’re really excited to launch that version as well!

**Some people are having trouble with in-app camera access. Apple has made some updates to camera functionality in iOS, so make sure you’re on the latest version of iOS, and that should solve the problem. If that or anything else is still giving you any trouble, please email support at hello@acolorstory.com.

  • Hey there! I’m loving your app! I wrote about it in my post ‘My favorite photo editing apps’
    I love you teamed up with other bloggers and photographer (Love Jeff Mindell and Splendid Rags!) to build something new, something customized for your own style. Congratulations!
    Bright colors forever! <3

  • This looks like an amazing app. Read this post, and the other details post on this app, and I really can’t wait for it to come out on the Android. Please make it soon! <3

  • I LOVE your app ! I just download it from the french app store (and i bought all the packs – <3 Chroma), and i think it will become my fav’ photo app. You did a great job 🙂 !

    PS : The only thing that bothers me is that the app remove the exif/metadata of the pic :(. Do you plan to correct that in a future update ?

  • Downloaded & it looks amazing! Can’t wait to start editing my photos and sharing this creative app. Thanks & Congrats Elsie x

  • When will this be on Android D: You guys are killin me this app is so beautiful that I cannot wait

  • I already love this app! It’s wonderful! Recently I wrote a blog post about it (it’s in Portuguese because I’m Brazilian), I love it so much! xx

  • Send us an email at hello AT acolorstory DOT com and we can help! 🙂 -Jacki

  • Amazing app! I am having difficulty on my iphone 4 seeing the top of the screen and pushing the “Done” button, and saving the steps to share to instagram.

    It would be nice to come out with video tutorials on how to use it 🙂

  • This app is FABULOUS! Thank you so much for creating it and filling the need I’ve had for clarity and color without oversaturation! I’ve blogged about it to the 3 people that follow me (including my mom). Ha! I have a smidge more reach on instagram, so I posted there also, and I pinned the link. You have a new follower for life. 🙂

  • I cannot wait for the android app!!! This is exactly what I had been looking for in a photo-editing app…so fresh and clean. You guys rock! =)

  • thank you! i am pretty excited to have something else along side it.

    the examples are great, but they are so small- it would be nice to have larger images with filter names, etc.

    LOVE the app!!! great job!

  • hands down, your best app yet 🙂
    loved & bought both of your older ones, but you’re spot on with this – it does simulate more photoshop gestures and adjustments than ever before. starting a slow clap all on my own over here!

  • Yes! I have heard a bunch of requests for some kind of guide. I am trying to figure out a useful way to create that now.

    Oh and by the way, you can still see all the examples in the “shop” part at the bottom of the app if you just want to browse for inspiration!

    xx- Elsie

  • This looks so good, downloaded and I can’t wait to start using it! 🙂


  • do you think you guys will come out with a “user guide”, or something that you can use along with the app to show you examples of the filters while editing?

    i know since i have been using the app, i LOVE all of the fun filters i have seen other people use and the ones in the examples, but the exa,ple images are a little small.

    it woudl be nice to have the same images that are shown in the filter purchase examples.

  • Can’t wait for the Android version! I’m always on the market for a great photo editing app and the photos in this post are beautiful. Great jobs guys!!

  • This sounds freakin amazing and I just downloaded it. I’m at work so I can’t try it our right now but I will be taking some pics after work for sure!

  • Yay! Congratulations, ladies! I am downloading it right now! I can’t wait to try it out!

    Kristi | Be Loverly

  • Really wonderful app, babes. It’s a lot of fun and while I love the VSCO app so much, I NEEDED a bright and crisp editor and I love editing on my phone. It’s so much fun and I was WAY excited to get that $7.99 deal on ALL the effects. I wrote a whole blog post (http://sentimentalcynical.blogspot.com/2016/01/another-snow-day-photo-editing-with.html) about it! ANYWAY, I have another question, I noticed when I was looking through the collections there was a photo of Press Coffee (in Dayton) and that gorgeous “Drink Coffee” sign. That’s my coffee spot AND my Boyfriend’s friends actually opened it! I wondered who took the photo? And thought it was the neatest little find. Stay cozy everyone!

  • I’m so excited! I’m about to get my first smartphone and this will be my first creative app ever 🙂

  • Interesting – I’ll have to check this out. I’m not really into photo editing now, but maybe this will get me there! http://www.enchantinglyemily.com

  • I want this app so badly! I’m patiently awaiting for the Android version!

    Monica – Mocha and Moccasins

  • GIRRRRRL all the hand clapping emojis for you. It’s everything you promised and I LOVE IT. Been gushing all over IG and left you a review as well. Keep up the good WERRRRK.

  • I opened up my App Store and ‘a color story’ was the very first on the trending searches list! 😀 can’t wait to start using it!!! Looks like it’s going to be a photog’s dream app!

  • Hi Margo! The app comes with 10 free filters, 20+ editing tools, curves (one of our favorite features) and the ability to make and save your own filters. Elsie explained this in more detail above if you’d like to read more. If you have anymore questions or concerns don’t hesitate to email us at hello AT acolorstory DOT com. 🙂 -Jacki

  • Hi Emma! It will be the same app and available everywhere. 🙂 -Jacki

  • Hi Alanna! The app comes with 20+ editing tools (including curves), 10 free filters, and a few sample effects. You also have the ability to make and save your own filters for free. Email us at hello AT acolorstory DOT com if you’re having issues downloading the packs! -Jacki

  • I don’t understand how this is “free.” Every choice I selected was an online purchase. I would either make it clear here that it’s not free OR be more clear about what parts of the app are free – because I couldn’t tell.

  • This looks amazing! Can’t wait for the Android app to be available!

  • Congratulations! The photos look really beautiful, will download it for sure.
    Lisa x

  • So excited about the Android version! Will it be free too? And available internationally?

  • OH my gosh it looks so awesome!!
    I cannot wait to get this on Android! Smiles.

    Way to go girls.xx

  • You’ve always been on the cusp of being revolutionary, and now here you all are!!

  • Will you eventually be making this app available for iPad as well? Looks like I can only get it on the phone and not the iPad. Sometimes it’s easier to see what’s going on with the iPad. Thanks!

  • This app looks very exciting especially for those who love taking photos. I’m really amaze with how pictures are improved because of photo filtering apps. A color story looks like it would bring added enjoyment for photo and gadget enthusiasts. Thanks for sharing. Will check it out!

  • I downloaded it, but it only allows me to use the basics aka “the essentials”. Most of the features do not appear to be free at all. But when I try to go to purchase the +packs it doesn’t work 🙁

  • Only read the title and totes just downloaded! Thank you for such a fun app I’m giddy with excitement!

  • Actually the app does come with a lot of stuff for free! Over 20 editing tools, 10 filters and a sample pack of effects. Plus the ability to make and save your own custom filters, that’s also free. I wrote a longer version of this explanation above, but at this stage we are just focusing on marketing the free app (which is LEGIT, usable and amazing) not the add-on packs. We’ll talk more about those in future posts. But for today we wanted to stick with a simple message. :))
    Hope that helps! xx- Elsie

  • Already got it and it’s amazing! Purchased all the packages too 🙂 LOVE!

  • Try the second link not the first (the one that just says ‘a color story’. The first one said the app was unavailable but the second one was good. I’m in Australia so thought maybe it was an international thing. 🙂

  • I just downloaded it and bought the pack, awesome… I can see hours of fun with this and some great photos. Thank you 🙂

  • Hey Liv!

    Thanks for reading! 🙂

    -Emma and I decided to close our store a couple years ago because it wasn’t super profitable and we were getting lot of opportunities that we were more excited about, like writing books and expanding A Beautiful Mess! We look back on our store as an AMAZING memory, but we don’t really miss it and are happier with the daily work we do now. 🙂

    -I still paint for fun, but I don’t sell my paintings right now. I feel like I am in between styles and I am hoping that in the next couple years I’ll be able to develop a new style I’m excited about.

    -We do still teach classes! You can see them all here! http://shop.abeautifulmess.com/shop/classes

    -Yes, we are planning to do more livestreams as well! :))

    Thanks so much for reading, Liv! I would love to meet you too!
    xx- Elsie

  • Downloaded and played around with a photo! Looks like many neat options and tools. A bit deceiving from your blog post about the app being FREE when the app packs are only available when purchased. Would there be harm in mentioning that upfront in the post?

  • It looks fantastic! I may have to purchase it when it’s released on Android!

  • Wow such a nice app, going to download this right away!



  • This app sounds perfect! Downloading this app right now I can’t wait to have a play around with it!

  • Hey Elsie!!!! I love the app, but I need to ask you a question, I don’t know if you will get it? So many comments, it’s great!!
    I am kind of a new reader, so I was wondering what happened to the red velvet store, are you having anymore live streams, and do you paint and do journaling classes anymore? I am such a big fan and I want to meet you really bad!!!

  • I would love to see some tutorial videos for those of us who are not super experienced in photoshop 🙂 Maybe a step by step of a couple of sample photos? The filters are great!

  • Congrats! Really excited to play with the app — looks amazing!

    Lindsey I www.treasuredinspiration.com

  • Hi Stephanie,
    A Color Story will always be free, and it will always have in-app purchases. The combo-pack deals for the purchases will change. 🙂

    So no stress! It’ll be there when your phone is fixed. 😀
    xx- Elsie

  • Can’t wait for the Android version 🙂

  • Hi Megan,
    You’re so observant! And you’re correct, that is intentional.
    We want to treat A Color Story as it’s own company, a sister company to ABM. We knew the ABM audience would be love A Color Story, but we didn’t want to limit the branding to just our audience. 🙂

    xx- Elsie

  • I noticed the name “A Beautiful Mess” is not used anywhere in the Ap store or on the Ap website. Just curious about the business strategy behind this…

  • is it free indefinitely or just for today? my phone is broken so crossing my fingers for indefinitely!

  • Hi!
    I’ve downloaded and love it already- QUESTION for you awesome folks: is there a way to see/test out what buying the $7.99 additions gets you? It might be super obvious but i can’t figure it out in the app!! I’d love to buy it if i could see what i was getting!

  • This is so exciting! I can’t wait for it to be out on Android! It looks like such an amazing app! Congrats guys!
    xo April | April Everyday

  • Hi Caitlin,
    When you download for free you get 20+ editing tools (including curves), 10 free filters (including one of my favorites in the whole app, Everyday) and a few sample effects. You also have the ability to make and save your own filters for free. I actually tested using ONLY the free items for several weeks and, honestly, it wasn’t difficult to use at all. It was awesome.

    We tried to be really generous with what comes for free and make it an app that’s actually usable without spending any $. We know what it’s like to download a “free” app and then find out that you have to purchase something to even use the app, and this is not in that category by any stretch.

    We wanted to make the free part of the app SO good that people would want to purchase more.

    The reason we didn’t mention the purchase packs in this blog post was because right now our main goal is simply to share the free download aspect. We really think the packs sell themselves once you try the free essentials filters. And if not, that’s ok too!

    I’m sorry if our communication came off the wrong way, that’s truly not how we intended it.

    Hope you love using A Color Story whether you choose to buy in-app purchases or not! :))


  • Hi Maria! Once you pay for the added filters or the entire pack, which is only 7.99, you can use them as much as you want without paying anything extra. Feel free to email us at hello AT acolorstory DOT com if you have anymore questions! -Jacki

  • It’s really cool, but to work well with it you need to pay extra… My question is, once you have paid for all options is ok, or you need to pay for every picture that you upload?

    An especial post today! Check my Puerto Banus Shooting, and enjoy as I did 🙂

    Bests! María

  • Maybe you could be a little more open/clear about just how much of this ‘free!’ app is locked away in purchasable packs. Like, actually mention the cost say, anywhere in the post. I’m cynical enough that I knew it wouldn’t be genuinely/completely free, but holy moly that’s a lot of pay-for packs, like 90% of the app is not free, and while each pack is affordable they’re not so cheap that they don’t need mentioning (and again, there are so many that to purchase them all would start to get unrealistic for app costs). Boo 🙁

  • After all these wonderful sneak peeks I cannot wait ’til the Android version arrives!

  • Downloading right now! Can’t wait to use it!


  • Excited to try this out 🙂 I really love that it’s free!


  • Hi Nicole! It’s probably still populating through the App Store. I would check back a little later today! 🙂 -Jacki

  • Downloaded a few hours ago – already my favourite new app! Clever, user-friendly, and everything I’ve been looking for to up my editing game…

  • I’m super excited to start using this for my blog! The lighting in my house is no bueno;(

  • I can’t find it in UK App Store. Is there a later release date for the UK?

    Nicole (patiently waiting for what looks like a great app)

  • For those of us who aren’t very familiar with photoshop, can you explain how to use curves? Thanks!! Love the app!!=)

  • Amazing app!! We welcomed our second little kiddo into this world a few days ago and I have been having so much fun taking photos and playing around with all the filters and tools. Beautiful work you guys!!

  • Loving the app so far but overwhelmed by all the filter options! Maybe a post of Elsie’s fav filters would be useful someday?

  • This is such exciting news! We can’t wait for the Android version… going to be instagramming like madwomen! Thanks for developing this, girls!


  • Ah so exciting! Downloading it as we speak.
    Congratulations ladies 🙂

    Molly {Dreams in HD}

  • When you save your image it will save the same size as it started with. 🙂
    xx- Elsie

  • Hey Karen!
    Sarah is working on a blog post (video) that teaches how to use them. It might be a couple weeks, though. The best way to learn is honestly just playing around with it. By moving the points/dots you can lighten, darken and change the color on your photo.

    I’m not a huge curves user, personally, so I usually just use brightness, contrast and 1 filter (or sometimes even JUST a filter). :))

    Hope that helps!

  • For those of us who aren’t too familiar with photoshop can you explain how to use curves? Thanks! Love the app!! =)

  • The app is currently downloading as I type this! Can’t wait to play around with it! XX


  • Canuck here and downloading as I type… purchasing all available packs and so excited to carve out some time and just sit with the app and play. An SLRer by nature it will b so nice to have an app that can make phone shots look snapalicious! Hope you have a super successful first day with your new release!!!

  • Totally in love, best app EVER!

    Question: is there any way to save an edited photo as hi-res? Mine are looking kind of looking pixley / blurry – not like the gorgeousness you have here.

  • Hey Lindsey,
    We haven’t decided when that deal will end, but it’ll last at least a couple weeks and we’ll post a “last call” before it’s over. 😀
    xx! Elsie




  • You guys I am so excited for this app! I can’t wait! Downloading right this second…


  • Nice!! The whole pack of filters is on sale for $8 I see, how long will that last and what will it be later on?

  • Downloaded it late last night and just played around with some older photos. I absolutely love it so far! Can’t wait to use it as one of my regular go-to’s for adding some “oomph” to my posts!

  • Wow, I can’t wait to try it!! 🙂 – Becky x


  • Im so excited for this app! Ive already downloaded it! <3


  • Im so excited for this app! Ive already downloaded it! <3


  • Well, got it now! For some reason it wasn’t showing on my iPhone, but I found it through iTunes on my Macbook. So I’m a happy camper now! AMAZING app you guys. I can already tell it’s moved to the top of my list for photo editing apps!

  • This is bonkers! So fantastic. Downloaded all of it. I will most definitely be passing this along! Great job.

  • I’m so excited for this! Finally a photo editing app that I can actually use! I’ll be sitting here as patient as possible waiting for the Android version. Thank you so much for your hard work on this project! And for offering it to us for FREE!! You guys are awesome.

  • Is there a delay for the Canadian app store? I’m not able to download it yet. 🙁 *tear*

  • downloaded it right after I woke up this morning 🙂 played around with it a little bit and I think it’s going to replace vsco as my go-to phone editing app. it has all the same features vsco does with the added curves (and I think I like your filters better!)

  • I’m a iPhone pic editing snob and this app is a dream!
    Congrats ABM team! xx

  • I have been waiting for an app like this! Quick first impressions suggestion – Can you make the “before” image not rotate back to the original way it was? Like if I have an image that is turned 90 degrees the wrong way the first thing I do in the app is rotate it correctly but then after I add filters, etc. and want to look at the before and after it is a little distracting when the image rotates back to the way it originally was rather than just turning the filters on and off. Does that make sense? Haha. This is proving to be harder to explain that I thought it would be.

    PS – The UX of the app is seriously amazing and I am blown away by it!

  • Oh! Android! That’s a very pleasant surprise! I thought after your experience with your first app you weren’t going to develop for Android again, so it’s brilliant to see that you are. Color Story looks *brilliant*, can’t wait to use it.

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