Friday, June 24, 2011

Chapter 1- Paint and wallpaper diaries

You will likely be hearing a lot from me about paint and wallpaper over the coming months (possibly stretching into years) so consider this a forewarning! We are just beginning and its a long, tricky and treacherous road but when you get it just right, its unbelievably rewarding too! So there will likely be many many "chapters" in my paint and wallpaper diaries to come. 

I will NEVER forget our first apartment, after just getting married  and how I wanted it to have a country french feel (this was at the height of the shabby chic craze)  and I was adamant about going for a soft blushy pink. Instead what I got was the perspective of living inside a  bottle of Pepto Bismol, and having to stare at that hideous shade of pink all day long. I had gone to work leaving the gallons of newly bought paint for the painter to use and came home to a monstrosity of pink overload. You are probably right now thinking, "well didn't you think to do a test patch"? The honest answer to that is no, I thought at my ripe old age of 22, I knew it all...yes thought I possessed that sixth sense that can choose a paint color with the flick of a finger. Clearly I was wrong. Way wrong. Words cannot describe my reaction when I excitedly returned home from work...I was aghast, nearly fainted at the shocking almost neon pink that greeted me. Needless to say I had the painters back first thing the next morning to do "damage control". Though I did spend the previous night in a fitful restless sleep trying to convince myself it had a certain charm, it was "a look". Yea, as much charm as a bottle of Pepto Bismol. No thank you!

 Thankfully I have come a long long way since then. Learning that in fact colored walls are not really my thing (Perhaps that experience traumatized me for life). I am much more of a neutral kind of gal and softly colored walls in earthy tones is much more my speed. I have had a lot of people email me about paint colors and several wanting to know the wallpaper name and manufacturers I posted on my Thursday house updates post. So first I will give you that information and then moving onto what I have learned and am in fact still learning about paint and some "sure thing" colors.

    REAR POWDER ROOM PAPER- Scalamandre's Parapluie color Ivory, pewter on pearl gold. It looks like its a brighter yellow than it is,its actually quite soft which makes it so pretty.

MASTER BEDROOM WALLPAPER  Stark's Tracy Andrew, Grand Siecle in buff
(I photographed it upside down- just realized this)

Moving onto paint............

BENJAMIN MOORE CLOUD WHITE A soft creamy white which is a favorite amongst many decorators, magazines, HGTV and countless other design gurus.

FARROW AND BALL POINTING (For the record this is their best selling color) Very warm and creamy.

NAVAJO WHITE BY BENJAMIN MOORE. Another all time best selling white, but for good reason.  I have used this many times and its a great color, very neutral and really considerd to be a "safe white" when in doubt!

FARROW AND BALL ELEPHANTS BREATH This is a neat color, I would say it has a putty like effect to it. I saw it first at a designers showcase and took note because it was really pretty.

FARROW AND BALL These are four colors I love, soft earthy putty tones. From clockwise on the left, they are  String, Stony ground, Chemise and Satin slipper.
A GRAY GREEN. If I get the nerve up to go with a little color, perhaps in a guest room or bathroom, and I want to go the green route..these two gray greens are really pretty, they are quite and subdued but give a hint of color. The top is Narragansett Green and the bottom is Stonington Gray.

A SOFT BLUE GRAY. Love this color, Farrow and Ball Parma Gray

A MOSSY GREEN. If I was to get bold and go green I would want a beautiful muted mossy green. Something old world looking. This Benjamin Moore color, Aganthus (even the name is old world) is gorgeous...check it out in the room below.

A TUSCAN SUNSET.I have always loved rooms that look like they are part of a sunset, those that take on a gorgeous warm apricot colored glow. Its bold and brazen and I am not sure I would do it but if I were to take the plunge, one color that's a proven winner is Benjamin Moore's Soft marigold. Proof is this splendid bathroom right out of Tuscany!

WHITES AND OFF WHITES. We all need them, have them and want them. Who doesn't love the perfect creamy white wall..not too stark but not too yellow. Benjamin Moore seems to have that covered with a few best selling "whites". You think all whites are the same until you start looking, then you never look at white the same way ever again! Some of the tried and true favorites are the best selling colors below. They are practically fool proof!
1.Ivory white. 2. White Dove 3. Decorators white 4.Atrium white 5. Acadia white 6. Elephant tusk

I think Benjamin Moore's best selling white of all time is one we all know well...Linen white

Another very popular BM white is White Dove

Only when you see all these whites together do you realize how many variations and undertones there are in this color. So its wise to pick up a pint, do a "test patch" and see how it plays out in your room with your light. It can look like a totally different animal from one room to another!

So lets now overwhelm our senses..enough paint talk for today. What are your tips on choosing paint color? Do you have a favorite? Any disaster stories of your own? I would imagine we have all had one or two! Hope you have an enchanted Friday.....