Advice

January 4, 2012

Picking a Perfect Grey

Cynthia Writes: What is the best grey for a home that gets limited light? Currently they have all been to green, too blue or look to beige. See Answer From Lindsay Ballard »
Categories: Color, Painting Tips
January 5, 2012

Highlighting Trim in an Older Home

Teresa Writes: I am going to re-paint my living room. We have traditional/Victorian furniture, that is constructed of espresso colored leather, fabric cushions with gold, teal, plum, and smoky blue print. The drapes are gold and sort of denim blue stripes. I was wondering if it would look ok to go with a nice gray with cream trim or to use a nice rich cream on the walls and do a midtone gray for the trim. We live in a home that was built in 1920 so it has some historic architecture to it, such as the crown molding and high ceilings. We are renting and are looking to buy this next spring. Fortunately we have a landlord who let us paint whatever colors we wanted "to make it our own". We know we have to neutralize as soon as we are ready to move and I would love to paint it nice to show off the molding in the living room and not hide it, but the colors have to work with our furnishings for now as well. Thank you, your input is greatly appreciated!!!   See Answer From Nicole Balch »
January 11, 2012

Rule of Three

Andrea Writes: I have 6 really cool vintage yellow chairs and was wondering how to incorporate them into a stucco, Tuscan-style kitchen with otherwise neutral colors. See Answer From Ana White »
Categories: Color, Kitchens
January 17, 2012

Paint Colors for A Hall with a Brick Wall

ileana Writes: I need help with choosing a color for my entryway in a New York City apartment. A friend suggested I should pull a color from the brick wall and carry it through to the other wall, making it cozy and unified. She suggested that I add decorative door casing and paint them shiny white. This sounded good at the time, but it did not work as imagined. Over the holiday break, I did venetian plaster in a brick color. It looks terrible - we hate it. Now we are arguing about what color to change it to. My daughter wants it to have a bright color pop. We are thinking of a chartreuse on the wall with the door an inky color or maybe it should be a darkish color with a bright front door (metal). There are two doors off the hallway leading into a bedroom and a bathroom. there are no windows into the hallway with natural light. I still like the idea of decorative door casings, but what color for those? I'm planning to hang many family photographs on the brick wall all in black frames. I'm very grateful for your time. I would appreciate any advice you can give me.  See Answer From Melissa Michaels »
Categories: Color
January 20, 2012

If Painting an Accent Wall in a Room – What color do I paint the other 3 Walls?

Cyndy Writes: After 2 yrs of debating on kitchen color paint I decided to do one accent wall in dark persimmon (deep orange color) I have no idea what to do rest of kitchen.  White? Creme? Suggestions? Also, should the accent wall color go anywhere else? Soffit around cupboard area? See Answer From Diane Henkler »
Categories: Color, Kitchens
November 5, 2013

Making Beautiful Music

Sarah Writes: My husband and I recently bought our first house and it's quite large. We're taking it a room at a time, but I need to get my piano room done first and stay within budget. I don't know what colors to use (it's currently a faint beige color from previous owner). I want to go with relaxing tones with cream or white furniture but if I'm having students in and out daily I'm afraid it would get dirty. I also want it to be an elegant room when I'm not teaching, a place for my husband and I to relax and share with guests. The couch I have now is SO ugly, but it was a cheap buy from Craigslist. I have nothing on the walls because anything I put up will affect the sound of the piano so I have to be careful and strategic about it. I wanted to get a big rug but they are so expensive so I purchased cups to go under the piano to protect the floor. I have no clue where to go next with this room, I’m so overwhelmed! Any advice for decorating around this massive beautiful piece of furniture? See Answer From Nicole Balch »
Categories: Color
January 20, 2012

How Bold is Too Bold?

ashley Writes: Hi ladies! My kitchen is painted in a bright coral and I love it with my cream cabinets! The rest of my downstairs are different shades of khaki neutrals with soft blue and cream accents. My dining room is bold true green. I feel like the bright green and bright coral are too much together and have been considering painting the dining room to tone it down, but I really don't want to do a neutral in that room as well. I am not afraid of bold color, but I how bold is too bold? Thanks for your advice! See Answer From Lindsay Ballard »
January 20, 2012

A Room for A New Teen

Melissa Writes: We are redoing our daughter's bedroom.  She is turning 13 next week and she wants a fresh look.  She got beautiful white bedroom furniture for Christmas and a quilt my sister made her.  She wants to decorate around this quilt that has beautiful shades of greens, blues, corals, pinks and yellows.  She has a solid comforter to put under the quilt that is blue on one side and green on the other.  She is getting a valance made with the same material as the quilt and green sheers down the side.  We are wondering what color to paint her room?  We just can't decide on what color will look best to bring it all together.  One of our ideas was to paint a lighter color on all the walls and then take one of the bolder colors and paint a large stripe around the room.  Not sure what this will end up looking like though.  We need help!!  See Answer From Melissa Michaels »
Categories: Bedrooms, Color
January 23, 2012

His & Hers: Combining Design Preferences

Jessica Writes: Hi! I'm so excited to have found this site! After living in our home for almost 5 years, I am finally considering making some simple changes to fit our taste as a couple. The only problem is- we have very different styles! I love soft colors (tiffany blue, sage green, grey, white) while my husband is drawn towards dark browns, dark reds, etc.  Our home was renovated shortly before we moved in, with neutral beige walls, white beadboard throughout the kitchen, living room and bathrooms (totally my taste- yay!) however, we have very dark furniture (ie. marble dining room table with dark leather seats) that my husband loves and is not willing to part with (or let me paint).  Any ideas of how to merge my love of light colors and chic geometrical patterns (a la "house of smiths") with our dark furniture?  Also, as I mentioned, we currently have beige walls and carpet and white bead board.  I'd love to add some grey, but I'm hesitant about mixing the warm beige with cool grey- any advice? Would painting the walls grey be a no no with beige carpet? Thanks so much! See Answer From Kate Riley »
Categories: Color
January 23, 2012

Bold Black & Red

Melanie Writes: I have a 1 bedroom condo which I am repainting and carpeting. I presently have cream frieze wall to wall carpet. I have even lighter cream (almost white) tile in the kitchen and foyer leading into the living room. The main pieces I am keeping are a large black leather sofa, all glass dining room table and 2 acrylic and glass end tables. I really want to do black wall to wall carpet with a bright red accent wall, but am afraid it's too much black. Looked at grey, but my last apt. was grey and white. I don't like pastels, brown, blues and greens. Was thinking of doing bright red carpet, but realized that was a bit over the top. I would appreciate any ideas, suggestions or thoughts you may have!! Thank you in advance! See Answer From Diane Henkler »
January 26, 2012

Choosing a Creamy Color for a Northern Facing Room

Sheri Writes: I've been looking for a creamy color,something between bejamin Moore, Carrington Beige & sherwin williams, Antiquiqe beige.  A shade lighter that combines them both.  I've tried, very carefuly, to combined them both, with no avail. It keeps up endding up looking orange.  Most of the light comes from the north.    See Answer From Lindsay Ballard »
Categories: Color
January 26, 2012

Giving a Second Hand Furniture Find Some Va Va Voom

ami Writes: I'm pretty sure this one will be close to home for all of you...I recently scored this beauty (???) off of Craigslist for the unbelievably low price of $25.00.  I compared it to a very similar piece at Ethan Allan that sells for something like $1200.00 more than that.  It is huge inside those doors and includes shelves and two massive drawers.  Awesome storage...and I totally love the hardware.  Obvious question though...what color???  I want to give this baby new life, new personality, new vavava voom.  What do you think?  And along with color choice, what sheen would you go with and, if I'm not going too far here...what about the hardware?  Thanks so much. See Answer From Lindsay Ballard »
Categories: Color
January 30, 2012

Two Story Trouble

anonymous Writes: What type of paint color (and 'techniques') do you suggest for a two-story entryway?  From the entryway, you can see straight through the house and out the back's 9-foot windows which overlook gorgeous pine trees so I don't want to distract from the natural view but would like something more than tan walls.  I am considering doing an accent wall (which currently houses our console table, etc.) of either thick horizontal stripes or some type of stenciling but am not sure if that is too busy due to the height of the room itself.  Our house is a new construction (so everything is tan blah) and decor vibe is more on the rustic Hill Country with cranberry, sage greens, mustard yellows, and browns throughout the main floor. See Answer From Kate Riley »
Categories: Color
January 30, 2012

What is Blue, White and Pink All Over?

Kristie Leigh Writes: Hey! I'm in my first house (yay!) and I have this great idea for a theme for my kitchen but I'm a very visual person and I have trouble "seeing" all the decorating possibilities. I'm wanting to decorate the kitchen based on Monet's paintings mainly the watterlilly series. Any ideas on how to go about pulling inspiration from a painting?   See Answer From Stefanie Schiada »
Categories: Color, Kitchens
January 30, 2012

Family Room Retreat

El Writes: My husband and I are going to repaint our family room in which we play video games and watch movies in the dark.  We want the walls to be dark and have decided we will paint the walls a dark teal. I wanted plum accents but my children really don't want plum and I was wondering what would be a good accent color for the curtains and rug? There are two windows and one closet door. Right now we have navy curtains but I can't picture them with the teal. Also what would be a good color for the trim and closet door? Or should we just paint them white? Right now the furniture is neutral brown/beige.  Thanks for your help! See Answer From Melissa Michaels »
January 30, 2012

Lavender goes with…?

Sunloving Writes: I am painting my bedroom. I know I want to paint it a light lavender. I want an accent wall of another color and to paint the ceiling a color also, not white.  the room is 14 by 14. One wall has two evenly spaced windows.  The opposite wall is where our bed is.  The other two side walls both have a door to a closet and a door to exit. See Answer From Diane Henkler »
Categories: Bedrooms, Color
January 31, 2012

Open for Inspiration

Roxie Writes: What is a good color for walls when you have dark mahogany furniture and a med. beige carpet in a room with lots of light? See Answer From Ana White »
Categories: Color
January 31, 2012

The Wallpaper is Gone… Now What?

Anonymous Writes: hello, I just found your site and am a newbie to decorating. I have really enjoyed what i have read so far and would love some decorating advice.  help!! I am living in an older house (built 1923 in San Francisco) and  i need some advice about color for a stairway to our bedroom.  I pulled off the very very old wall paper,(7 layers), primed and now am overwhelmed about how to proceed and choose a color! The staircase is quite closed in and narrow  with 11 steps. Walking up the stairs the walls rise to over 14 feet high with the wall of a closet being on the right built on the banister railing.  The left wall is just a plain very tall wall.  The narrowness and height are a little claustrophobic. The stairs turn 90 degrees at the top to join a small landing (4' 1" wide x 4' 9" long ). Opposite the top of the stairs there is a small window (3' 9" long x 2' 4" wide )  The light comes through a sun room window to this window.  Originally the sun room on the other side of the window was an outside balcony that was remodeled , so light comes through two sets of windows and  i don't know if that affects the light to the stairs as the sun room windows have light drapes on them.  I am so new to this so I don't know! Our bedroom is to the left and the closet to the right of the stairs.  This window is the light source during the day and a light on the landing for evening but no lighting on the stairs so the light doesn't reach all the way down.   There are two turns to the stairs, the one at the top and one at the bottom also 90 degrees so a bit gloomy.  it also has chocolate brown painted treads with a brown and beige stair carpet (yuck) that could be changed. I was initially thinking of a pastel shade of somkind for walls or an off white/white with a hint of green or blue, but after reading your article speaking of being careful with pastels i'm not so sure!  what do you think?  photo attached.  thank you so much i am very lostl with color choices.    and want to make this entry to our bedroom as fabulous as possible. btw, bedroom is an aqua with white trim but this can be changed also, its a bit like a swimming pool!! Thank you so much for any guidance you can offer. Kindest regards Nina  btw tried to send a photo, very small jpg but it said it was too big, don't understand.  Can i send you an email ? See Answer From Nicole Balch »
Categories: Bedrooms, Color
February 1, 2012

Bold Competition

Sonya Writes: I have a tiny powder room with no natural light coming in.  It's about 3' wide by 7'-6" long. Since it's a powder room, I'd love to do something bold but I don't want it too crazy since it is so small.  It has a great pedestal sink and sea shells I want to incorporate.  I'm leaning towards coral and teal.  What's your take on these colors for this space?  See Answer From Ana White »
Categories: Bathrooms, Color