Advice

January 17, 2012

Long Live Olive

Anonymous Writes: When my husband and I got married, we bought olive green couches. I wish we had gone with tan because I feel like the green limits me so much when trying to decorate our living room. Also, I made window treatments (valances) and because I was trying to add some color to the room I used a maroon/cherry solid fabric. I hate the green/maroon color scheme. I loved it 10 years ago but not today. We live in a rental, so we have white walls and can't paint. Do you have any ideas about what I might be able to do to decorate? Our carpet is white, our walls are white, our couches are green, and our window treatments are maroon/cherry as I said. We have very little wall space as the room has 3 large windows (each window is about 59x59 inches). I'm to the point where I would be fine taking the window treatments down and starting fresh, but I'm not sure where to start. The kitchen and the living room are one large room pretty much. The kitchen color scheme consists of aqua/robin egg blue, yellow, lime(ish) green, and a couple other shades of blue. Do you have any advice about green couches and where you might go from here? I am all ears! Thank you! See Answer From Stefanie Schiada »
Categories: Living & Family Rooms
January 18, 2012

A Sofa Situation

Anne Writes: I have a very large sectional (7 pieces) that is in perfect condition. The problem is that the upholstery is pretty much an ode to the 80's. Dusty mauve pink with a teal stripe and a darker mauve-y purple stripe. Sounds hideous I know. But really isn't. It does make painting the living room anything but off-white hard - at least I can't figure out what to do. And re-upholstering isn't an option - it would cost about $8000 - I checked. Can you suggest anything but off-white? Or should I just suck it up and go with that? Thanks! See Answer From Kate Riley »
Categories: Living & Family Rooms
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 23, 2012

Contrast or Compliment

Nicole Writes: Hello!  I have been struggling with what to do in my family room for three years!  We live in a split level home.  The main floor is fairly open with a living room, dining, and kitchen.  The cabinets and granite luckily meshed well with our furnishings and colors that were more in the mission/farmhouse style with rusts, mossy green, and a creamy yellow.  But just down five steps and open to all of that is our family room that has pine wainscoting and a giant brown brick fireplace--the same from the exterior of our house and will be nasty to paint.  It only has one window.  I am afraid that painting it white will seem out of place and I am wanting to blend the two levels a little more and I think neutrals will be the way to go.  But here is the big question, do I paint the bottom a darker brown and the top a cream--colors from the fireplace and the woodwork-- or vice versa?  Thanks for any help! See Answer From Ana White »
Categories: Living & Family Rooms
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 31, 2012

Take a Stand Against Tan

Michele Writes: Hello, I am wanting to "lighten" things up in my family room which is right off our kitchen. I am struggling with wall paint color...not sure if I go with the tan color you see everywhere or choose a creamy white. My kitchen is newly remodeled with white cabinets and walls and granite countertops in golds and brown. I have a large brown brick fireplace in the family room with mainly dark tones throughout, brown leather sofa and 2 multi colored recliners in brown and gold. The paneled walls are painted a golden den color...its feeling very dated! I have double french doors in the family room. I would appreciate any suggestions!! Thank you!!! See Answer From Stefanie Schiada »
February 2, 2012

Rustic, Warm, and Woodsy

Lauralee Writes: We just recently painted our living room with SW Windsor Greige which we really like (although some people think it's a shade of green!).   Unfortunately, our new sofa is right up against the wall and it seems to just melt into the wall because it's also a very light neutral shade.  I was thinking about painting that sofa wall a contrasting color in order for the sofa to stand out.   Our home is rustic with pine flooring and medium stained wood trim and baseboards.  The room is approximately 12' x 15' and has 4 "regular" sized windows (2 facing southeast and 2 facing southwest on either side of the fireplace) and one large picture window facing northwest.  The room gets a lot of afternoon light.  The fireplace (which is opposite the sofa) is constructed of brick salvaged from an old building in town that was torn down and has a piece of cedar for a mantle.  The windows have valance-type curtains made with Waverly Magic Carpet Spice (http://www.decorativefabricsdirect.com/Waverly_MAGIC_CARPET_SPICE_673260_Fabric_p/6030811.html).    What are some complementary colors for Windsor Greige that we paint that sofa wall?  I was thinking about green or blue shades (or blue/green).  Any ideas or suggestions?   Thanks so much in advance!! See Answer From Diane Henkler »
February 8, 2012

Creating Contrast

D. Writes: I would like to contrast a few walls,  the dining room, living room and maybe the master bedroom. The walls are all one color right now... a medium beige with a yellow tint. First, I'm not sure how to select the walls to contrast. The living and dining room are side by side. I'm thinking of colors in the green family for the living and dining room. Secondly, should the colors be the same since the room are side by side? Lastly, will contrasting some of the walls in your home make the house look unbalanced?  Need your help really bad.   See Answer From Nicole Balch »
February 8, 2012

Open Floor Plan Dilemma

Laura Writes: I'm moving into a new condo with an open floor plan and agonizing about paint colors. The living room, dining room, and kitchen are all one big room. I'm looking for a neutral paint color for the walls. I'm thinking of going to the beige/tan route, but I want to make sure the color is warm, not too dark, and doesn't look the color every landlord paints apartments. I have eastern exposure and 9 foot ceilings. Any suggestions? Do you think i should veer from the beige/tan color palette?   Thanks! See Answer From Kate Riley »
February 8, 2012

Pulling it All Together

Sara Writes: I recently painted gray in my livingroom and kitchen. Before that I had Maize-yellow.  I am struggling now to pull everything together.  I have tan carpet, golden oak (yuk) floor and trim, gray walls and red couch!  Help.  See Answer From Nicole Balch »
February 8, 2012

Clashing Shoes

Jennie Writes: I have a golden oak piano and sage green couch that i kind of have to work with...I of course would love all new everything to go with colors I like but not yet. So, I am having the hardest time thinking of how to redo my living room with this ugly oak colored piano...PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE do you have some suggestions? I am so frustrated with this room. I don't have a picture currently but can take one if needed.  Please help me get started... See Answer From Ana White »
February 9, 2012

Basement Beginnings

Shauna Writes: I'm trying to come up with a new color scheme for my basement family room. There are NO windows and the overhead lighting is flourescent lighting like you see in office buildings. We have a medium beige/tan microfiber sectional couch and the carpet is that kind of generic light taupe color. The basement has low ceilings and with no natural light, it tends to feel a little closed in, but when the walls were white, it feels very sterile with the overhead flourescent lighting. This is the room where we spend the majority of our time as a family (TV room), so I would like it to feel very homey and comfortable. See Answer From Kate Riley »
February 28, 2012

Beige Boredom

Leslie Writes: After 5 years with 2 kids & 3 dogs in a house with flat beige paint (builder beige), we are needing to repaint (ready for a change and needing a more cleanable paint finish). My colors (accents around the house) are aqua/turquoise & green. I would like to paint 2 rooms aqua/turquoise (thinking kitchen & dining room) but am having problems with deciding on a neutral. I would love to do grey in some areas but would also like some beige. Can I do 2 neutrals and if so, are there beiges that go with greys?   If doing these two neutrals is not the way to go, I am thinking grey might work better with my aqua room (we have an open floor plan where the living room & kitchen are pretty much the same room, the ceiling color would need to be the neutral that is in the living room because of the curved wall to ceiling) but maybe I'm totally wrong a beige would look better?? I need help!! :) See Answer From Kate Riley »
February 28, 2012

Keeping the Balance

Chrissy Writes: I read your blog on how to choose paint with an open floor plan. I am still confused with my own situation! I have chosen red and gray as my accent colors. My neutral shades are a beigey gold color. When you walk into my house you walk into a foyer with a neutral palette and then to the right is my red dining room and to the left is my living room. My kitchen is visible from my dining room which is painted slate gray with white cabinets. I really don't know what color to paint my living room! I am at a loss! Should it be a bold color or play off the neutrals?  See Answer From Diane Henkler »
March 6, 2012

How to Tie Rooms Together

Andrea Writes: I want to paint my walls in my living room and kitchen the same color because they flow together, the size of the living room is 21 ft x 16 ft and has 1 window and the kitchen is about the same size with 1 window over sink and 1 sliding glass door. I had three colors I was deciding from and those were tan, light gray, or lilac (between lavender and lilac) with white trim, I want it to feel warm, if you have a better idea with color let me know. I am having a hard time deciding. Please help!! I would like to go with black and white damask throw pillows and curtain panels. I have a white slipcovered couch and nutmeg wood floors. I also have a coffee table and end tables that I want to paint either black or white, which color do you think? My kitchen has a white dining table and china cabinet and is done in black and white toile. What color should I paint my walls to tie both rooms together and what color should I paint the coffee table and end tables? Thank you so much for your help!! See Answer From Stefanie Schiada »
March 7, 2012

Decorating a Family Room With Blue and Gray

Chris Writes: I am redecorating my family/living rooms that are connected and I need some advice. I have navy blue leather chairs and a couch and I have a light gray carpet and light gray tile around my fireplace.  As these are not really current colors in most decorator's magazines, I am wondering what you would suggest that I paint the walls that would coordinate these and give it a new look, yet not be too dark as the rooms are not real big. I also would like a suggestion about the color of window valances that would help coordinate everything. I rarely see anything in the blue shades. Thanks in advance. See Answer From Melissa Michaels »
March 9, 2012

Adding Modern Colors to a Classic Palette

Sara Writes: In our informal living room (tv room), we have red walls, white trim, and tan couches. I do love the red and the white really makes it pop. But I am getting a little bored... is there another color to add in the mix for some super fun accessories or throw pillows or something? Thanks!!! See Answer From Lindsay Ballard »
March 9, 2012

Get the Blues

Lauren Writes: I just bought a house and need advice on what color to paint my living room. The focal point of the room is a bright red antique wingback chair. We also have a dark brown leather couch and some artwork with reds in it.  Right now it's a peachy beige (which I hate). I am not afraid of bold colors. The room has hardwood floors, a high ceiling, and pretty good natural light coming in. I cannot think of a good color to go with all the reds except for navy blue. Would that be a good color, or would something else work better? See Answer From Nicole Balch »
March 22, 2012

Narrow Down Your Color Choices

ShadyLady Writes: Hi, I have currently lived in my place for close to 2 years, and I am finally going to paint. First time really choosing a color palette, and VERY overwhelmed. I am a bohemian gal at heart, love lots of color. Right now I am going to paint just a couple accent walls in my main living space (this is the room we are ALWAYS in) it is roughly 18x20. There is one window on the wall I want to paint and the other area I want to paint is the staircase going up, and the alcove below the staircase (a giant triangle) where all the kids toys are. There is a slider glass door is opposite of the window. I currently have paper lanterns (pink, yellow and white) strung origami cranes (ranging from pinks, yellows, and oranges) hanging all in the corner of the window wall. No real art/pictures hung on the walls as of yet. I love the deep teals, mustard yellows, oranges, and chartreuse green, and pinks (but my hubby isn't too keen on a pink wall) just not sure how to pick my paint colors, any suggestions?    A Super THANK you, ShadyLady See Answer From Melissa Michaels »
Categories: Living & Family Rooms