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10 Happy Years of Colour me Happy!

By 10/31/2018October 31st, 2019492 Comments


I can hardly believe it’s been 10 years that I’ve been writing this blog. It was not at all planned that my first post would go live on Halloween, October 31, 2008. It’s an odd anniversary because it’s definitely not my favourite holiday, it just happened.

I wrote five posts that first weekend and never looked back.

For the first six years I posted four times a week and now I’m down to two posts a week. I decided quality was better than quantity and it works much better for my busy schedule!

In 10 years I have written just over 1500 posts, during that time, I stopped saying ‘cute’ too often, my grammar got slightly better (thanks to so many of your comments) and my photography is much improved, haha.

Some of my long-time readers will remember my very first header (above). I loved the colourful, whimsical feel of this header and when I switched from this blogspot blog to my own WordPress blog. I considered keeping it, until one of my readers sent an almost identical photo (without the ottoman and fan deck) she snapped on a decorative box at a home decor store in Texas.

I didn’t realize that I had not been given original art when I commissioned this header so I let it go.

Maria and Terreeia (pronounced Maria with a T)

I’m the face and writer, but my long-time partner and now wife Terreeia was the one (almost 20 years ago) who found the first colour workshop for me to attend when I decided I had to be creative or die.

She gave me the nudge that made it happen. She’s the one who initially educated me on what a blog was and helped me turn this blog from a hobby to the thriving education business that it is today.

She’s also been the constant support I need to keep it going, and I’m so grateful, to her and all of you who stop by to hang out with me here.

Terreeia was formerly an executive coach and consultant, she officially joined my business 3 years ago when we incorporated and hired a lawyer to get a Visa so I could lead my Specify Colour with Confidence workshops in the US.

If you attend one of my workshops, you’ll find her at the back of the room making sure everything runs smoothly.  She’s amazing at this, people often comment how organized and well run they are.

In her corporate days, she also ran workshops so she has been instrumental in suggesting changes to the course that has turned many students into raving fans! And my course is never the same because colour trends are always changing, and we are constantly improving it.

For the first 5 years, she would not let me talk about her at all. She was sure I’d lose most of my readers if I introduced her as my partner. When I finally did here, you were so sweet and supportive.

When I started making money

I blogged for almost a year before I figured out how to consult with clients online. I started getting inquiries from readers all around the country asking if I would fly out to help with their new builds, exterior colour, colour consultations and decorating, so I started doing live consults on the phone.

However, working one-on-one makes it hard to help many people. I watched other designers create eDesign packages for their clients but they were wrapping up boxes with ribbons and mailing out samples, and since most of my clients are in the US and I’m in Canada, logistically it would have been more difficult to do it that way, so I resisted that model.

The eDesign department slowly morphed into the system we use now and it works really well and leaves my clients with a colour plan to either fix their colours, create a decorating plan or create a timeless bathroom, kitchen, new build or exterior!

Be True to Your True Self

When I originally started writing my blog I had no idea that I had so much to say. I also didn’t realize it at the time that I took a position that was polarizing.

I said some very unpopular things such as, skip the trendy accent tile, don’t mix clean and dirty colours, lighting is actually NOT the reason your colour looks wrong, and so on.

For my opinions, the critics came out en mass and if we’re honest, they are still around. But I’ve stood firm and true to what I’ve seen in thousands of homes I’ve been in. And in the endless real estate ads and builders’ brochures that are sadly not pretty (you never like the kitchen or bathroom in your next house unless it’s brand new and then it’s still only a maybe).

I’ve been a careful observer of design for many years, and it’s what I’ve witnessed that informs what I believe. Seeing so many people make mistakes in their homes that kept them up at night made me sad and I had to say something. So I created a system. Not a theory, but an applied and practical System for Specifying Colour®  that would be way more useful than trying to understand colour theory (which, certainly never helped me choose a colour palette).

Understanding Undertones - The System for Specifying Colour

The System for Specifying Colour

Look, there are many approaches and yes, systems for choosing the right colour, and I believe there is room for everyone inside the tent of style and design.

My system is just one way that has proven helpful over the years of writing this blog, so any time a critic comes my way, I just look back at the ten years of your comments, testimonials, encouragement and feel proud that my posts have been of service.

If you’ve been around for awhile, you know that I am transparent. I’m open about the mistakes I make in life and in business because I never want someone to meet me in person and declare “She’s NOTHING like her blog” That to me, would be the worst. Because it’s happened to me when I’ve met someone and am disappointed that they are nothing like their online personality.

I still cringe when I think about an oversharing (keeping it real) post I wrote about my trip to Italy over 3 years ago that I had NOT read in a long time. However, this summer I linked back to it (WHY?) and one reader promptly emailed me and said “You have issues, I am unsubscribing”. I went back, re-read the post and deleted it immediately, I was so horrified.

As hard as I try to be amicable and approachable, I am still unfiltered and sometimes alienate people because I’m open and outspoken.

But unfiltered or not, I am committed to personal growth and always willing to share myself and what I’ve learned from giants I admire in this life. I say be true to your true self, because that is all we really have.

The created self won’t stand the sniff test so be who you are, warts and all and the world will show up and love you for it.

My Mom Hellen

Many of you know how much I love my mama. In the last year, we’ve taken her with us to New York at Christmastime, Palm Springs for the month of January and she joined us halfway on our trip to the Amalfi Coast this summer. I am so grateful to have a young Mom who is such a huge support to me as well as being my best friend.

My Mom Hellen and me in New York

The best thing about doing well financially is being able to share amazing experiences with the ones you love.

True Colour Expert Community

Specify Colour with Confidence in Boston 2017

Almost 1000 fabulous people have attended my Specify Colour with Confidence workshop since we launched it on the blog nine years ago.

Since then, the course has changed dramatically, on-line shopping and eDesign have become mainstream and now I spend half a day on that training on the third day. We buy almost everything online these days and almost every purchase involves making a colour decision, so it’s more important than ever to be colour savvy.

At every course, we always have two graduate volunteers at the back of the room assisting Terreeia and we always have a long list of True Colour Experts who want to be in the room to listen to the course again.

One of the best things I did was to create the private TCE Facebook page so graduates can all share their experiences, expertise and challenges in the world of colour and design. It is an incredibly supportive and caring community with amazing diversity of knowledge and expertise to share with each other. Each course brings new members to the forum with unique gifts to share. I have learned so much from this group and I am grateful to have this wonderful community in my life and business.

As I reflect on where I’ve been and how far I’ve come, I’m flooded with gratitude. It’s a marvel of fortune to realize that when I began my career years ago, making a living online via a sort of diary about my passion for colour and design did not even exist as a possibility. But what constantly emerges is intense gratitude for the people in my life who have made living my dream possible. Gratitude for all of you dear readers and friends old and new.

You have made this my best 10 years yet. My sincerest thanks to you all.

The other milestone I’ve hit this very same week that my blog turned 10 is I reached 10,000 followers on Instagram. The reason why this is a big deal is that I’ll be able to use the ‘swipe up’ feature on my Insta-stories, instead of just referring you to the link in my bio. That is a something worth celebrating too!

So to celebrate YOU, I am giving away 10 gifts!

One seat in one of my Specify Colour with Confidence events this Spring (Value $2,500)

One double set of my Large Paint Samples – Full Collection (Value $529)

4 How to Choose Paint Colours; It’s all in the Undertones eBooks(Value $27 each)

4 White is Complicated; A Decorators Guide to Choosing the Right White  eBooks(Value $27 each)

Prizes may not be redeemed for cash.

To be eligible to win, please post a comment below and let me know what I still need to write and may not have covered in 10 years of blog posts!

To be entered a second time, follow me on Instagram too and I will add you in the draw again (or if you already follow me on Instagram make sure you note that in the comments). I will draw the winners on November 22, American Thanksgiving!

Thanks so much for everyone who voted for me earlier this week.  I’ve been nominated as an influencer with Modenus. I thought I was listed as 53rd and as you all voted, I kept moving up and you let me know “Hey Maria, now you’re at 18, now you’re at 12” I didn’t realize I moved up as the votes came in, haha. Please vote for me (again)! You can vote every day until November 2 here! 

I really love my readers, thank you so much for supporting me, posting comments, because of you, my world is so much more enriched!


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  • Congratulations on 10 years and 10,000 followers! I have been a fan since April, 2010. You did my kitchen in 2016, and will do my next one as well. I remember that Italy post, and am sorry you deleted it. We love you, and we wouldn’t even know you if you didn’t have that strong ENTJ personality with both its strengths and its weaknesses. Thank you for making a more beautiful, and more colourful (Canadian spelling, for you) world. As for what to do in the future? Just don’t quit, despite the financial security. We need your gift and your touch. Thank you, Maria.

  • Catherine says:

    I enjoy every post Maria, and I have gained so much from your brilliant system. Books, blogs and TCE training have all help me be a better designer, thanks!

  • Lynne says:

    Congratulations! I have a shocking memory when it comes to timeframes, but I know I’ve been following you for several years. I remember your Italy post too and liked that you don’t only post saccharine stuff but keep it real. Your true fans are still with you because we understand that no human is perfect. Those that left are the ones who carefully edit their lives on social media to make/fake them look perfect.
    I’d really like to see more on how to successfully mix woods i.e. stained/varnished wooden furniture with a wooden floor, and best colours to use with them. I still haven’t got my head round that yet.

  • Yashira Frederick says:

    Hi Maria! Congratulations! I’ve been enjoying your blog for at least half of those 10 years. Here’s a question you may not have covered: When looking at potential homes to buy; are there any features (finishes, flooring, etc.) that we should look for if we are not trying to do a remodel right away?

  • Karen Kowalenko-Evjen says:

    Love your blog. I am a retired esucator who lives in Saskatoon. We renovated our entire main floor in 2015. Loving it. So far, so good. Enlightened by your explanation of undertones. You made practical something I have always known but couldn’t put a finder on. Thank you!

    Have you ever written a blog about trim? Baseboards, crown moulding, etc. dos and don’ts and which decorating style with which? In my opinion, trim is like jewellery.

    Congratulations on your tenth anniversary. I look forward to reading your blog posts and hope to continue reading for years to come! Thank you!

  • Adelaide says:

    Wow! I remember that header, but I thought there was another before it, with “Colour Me Happy” in blue writing. No matter, I’ve been a fan for years, I am continually referring you to friends who are worrying about paint colours. I’ve certainly benefited from your generosity, knowledge and talent over the years Maria, particularly when I moved house earlier this year. When house-hunting I kept looking for the white basics and wooden floors, because I knew I could change the rest easily. Some friends didn’t get this, but eight months later, I live so happily in my retirement home. You are why I sit on a coral coloured sofa, follow ‘trends’ only with throw-away items, and have more lamps now than ever before. I appreciated your courage when you introduced Terreeia, everyone has the right to love who they love. Meeting your Mum has been another privilege, you are surrounded by warm, loving people. I could go on…. You are an amazing role model for girls and young women. Congratulations on these two milestones – 10 years and 10,000 followers, from down here in Oz.
    PS My wish for you presently is that at least 50% of these followers vote you into No. 1 position – checking back and voting each day.

  • Maurissa Young says:

    Congratulations on all your success! What a truly amazing gift you have and thank you for sharing a bit of that talent with all of us. 🙂 You are helping to make our world a more beautiful place one home at a time! Congratulations again to your team, to your wife and yourself. You all deserve something decadent to celebrate 🙂

    Something I would like to read about is my current dilemma in my new build. What fun and vibrant colors can you paint a toddler’s playroom while still making it flow nicely with a classically painted home?

    Thanks so much!!!

  • Melinda Messick says:

    Wow, I’ve been following you for about half your “blog life” and I’ve learned soooo much. Thank you.

  • Congratulations on your 10 year anniversary Maria! I am a relatively new subscriber and really enjoy your posts. I also have been sharing your blog stories on Houzz when I see a colour design dilemma where your advice fits. I’d be curious about a new blog that covers timeless design (are there projects you have done years ago that still look ‘fresh’ and current to you). I think that would be interesting to see and learn from. Thanks so much and now headed to Instagram to follow you!

  • Katharine says:

    Thrilled for you, congrats! Am a relatively new subscriber and IG follower. Love your structured approach to color and design. Would like to see more posts like one you did recently on how to remedy/work around wrong color choices (clean vs dirty) without having to replace hard surfaces (rip out floors, countertops and cabinets). Would also like to see a post on how to get out of one’s ‘color rut’—how to stop gravitating to the same color scheme time and time again. Wishing you continued success!!

  • Julie Martin says:

    Dear Maria,
    I am a quiet behind-the-scenes admirer but looking forward to soon taking your renowned color workshop I hope! I honestly feel like they will change my life. So thank you in advance and thank you for your overwhelming generosity and much appreciated honesty- all truly gifts which continue to bless you and us.

    Julie from Baltimore

  • Joan Redfern says:

    Hi Maria. Congratulations on 10 years and 10,000 followers. I’m one on Instagram (not sure if I’m supposed to mention that here or there). I’m a recent follower, having bought (and live in) a true fixer upper in Dallas a little over a month ago. I wish I had the $ to attend your starting-today color workshop here, but I’m not a designer and no money because of all the unexpected issues (gutters, plumbing, electrical, insulation…the list goes on and on). I gave not yet gotten through all your posts and don’t know if this is something you’ve covered, so here goes: How do I match or coordinate the outside color of my house with the inside? I’m looking for steps, I.e., what comes first? Roof, exterior, shutters, front door, foyer rug? Your blog is the only decorating blog I follow because it’s true, succinct and practical. Thank you so very much! Still voting…

  • Enjoyed and followed you for years both on your blog and Instagram. I am a working abstract artist who adores colour but have always like you loved the envelope to be a neutral. I embrace my white walls in my light filled space but accents of colour pop in all my original art and accents, I value the influence you have had on me. Congrats on your successful ten years.

  • Karen Ernest says:

    Happy 10 years. Thanks for all the great advice!

  • Cathy says:

    I love your blog! I’ve learned so much already!! I’ve read a couple of your ebooks and love them.

  • Rory Walker says:

    I love this post on the evolution of your blog life. You are very talented and I love your creative style. I really think that living your passion shows through. Many wishes for another successful ten years living your dream!!!!
    I would love to see more post on before and after pictures and blogs where you photoshop solutions to problems readers are stumped on.

  • Congratulations on your ten year anniversary Maria. My business changed after attending your colour course in Tironti a few years ago. My confidence improved overnight specifying colours in my staging work. I sometimes work in homes with 4 or 5 different floors which made it difficult to pick paint colours to freshen up the homes when sellers couldnt change the floors. I recommend anyone who asks about your course to take it as it is life changing. You see the world with new eyes. Traveling becomes an education as you now “see” colour in a much different way. Thank you Maria. I will never forget what you have taught me. Keep on being you, it’s what makes you so different from everyone else.

  • Jill Papanek says:

    Thank you, Maria, for being so authentic and honest. I’ve been following you for years – I remember that old header! Your blog is a fun read, and more importantly, I learn something every time! I don’t always follow trends, but I love when you write about your predictions for the fate of colors – what’s going to be and what’s out.

  • Robin Stanley says:

    I just found your blog a few months ago. Already I have learned so much. We recently bought a second home where our kids live. We wanted to make a few updates but not spend a lot of time or money. With your help I selected white subway tile for the bathroom and white octagonal tile for the kitchen. Classic. And we won’t tire of them in a few years. The entire house was painted red inside. New colors? No problem. IThanks and best wishes for your continued success and happiness. PS i follow you on IG.

  • Diane says:

    Happy ten year Anniversary! It was about eight years ago I found you…like finding my decorating soul mate. I patterned my new kitchen after yours and hired you to help me choose “the right white” for my cabinets. Please continue what you are doing. I realize how very busy you are, but what I would love to see are more frequent posts from you on any decorating/design topic. I get SO excited when you are in my inbox. Would also love to see a post on achieving a “collected look”. Thank YOU Maria for making my world more beautiful. PS. I follow you on Instagram as well.

  • Dunja says:

    Dear Maria,

    I have not been following you for long since my interest in interiors only sparked once we bought our first apartment last winter, but now I am a regular reader and have been through tons of your posts, old and new. I am only commenting to express how much I love them, not just because of the helpful advice, but more because of how honest and down-to-earth and warm you are when you write, unlike so many bloggers out there who change completely as soon as they have “made it”. Please stay that way and I wish you many more decades of success in doing what you love!

  • Lee says:

    I am a new follower and look forward to your new posts each week! The first post I read was on a peachy/tan bathroom and what piece in the bathroom didn’t relate. This was a whole new way to think about things for me! I am just getting my feet wet and I look forward to learning so much more from your blog. I would love to know your thoughts on what to do with those old dark wooden beams that run across an 8 foot ceiling in many 1970’s dens.
    Thank you!

  • Maureen Crabb says:

    HI Maria, congratulations on your achievements!!! It has been so much fun to watch. I’ve been reading your blog since 2011 and have gotten the best compliments on my design choices, all due to your advice. Most recently, we sold our house that we built two years ago. I went back to bring a key and mentioned to the new owner that we had left paint in the basement in case they need to do touch ups, but if they were going to repaint I would be happy to take it as I would re-use it. She said (gushed really) that everything was absolutely perfect, she adored the colours and finishes I had chosen and she would not be changing anything!!! 🙂 That’s all to do with your advice/blog posts, please don’t stop writing.
    This week you posted about painting an 80s kitchen and what to do with the wood valance above the window. I am about to undertake just such a reno and didn’t even realize I hadn’t thought about that part yet or even considered extending the cabinets to the ceiling!
    I attended your course in Vancouver this fall, it was such a privilege, I feel so spoiled that I was able to do that. As much as I learned from your blog and the course, there will always be more to learn or re-learn.
    Thank you!!! All the best for any future endeavors you undertake, I am sure they will be magically colourful

  • Kate says:

    I used to repaint often never being happy with my color selection. Since following you I get it right the first time! Moved into this home and painted top to bottom seven years ago and still love my colors! I skipped the gray trend, thank goodness, now see it as bad as the brown trend. Can’t help loving this black, white and natural wood look. Easy to incorporate with my off whites and creams with a pop of color. I’m not a big user of instagram but follow you there too.

  • Robin says:

    Hi Maria
    Congratulations on your ten years of blogging! I have thoroughly enjoyed reading!
    Wishing you and yours many years of good health and success!!
    Ps…I’m not a commenter, but you deserve respect for working so hard.

  • Joyce Ward says:

    Hi Maria!
    Congratulations and best wishes on 10 Happy Years of Colour
    having followed you also for most of those years. You have taught me so much and I have passed it along to family and friends. Again, congratulations, you deserve it!
    Keep up the good work. Thank you for all you do!

  • Joanne Sweeney says:

    Congrats on 10 Years! A friend told me about your blog and I have been reading it for about 2 years. I have learned so much. While my personal color choices lean more dirty than yours, I agree so much with your thinking about trends and designing for longevity. I hope to attend a color workshop soon, but need to wait until my 3 kids in college graduate. Wishing you many more happy and productive years❤️

  • Christine Baumbach says:

    What do you do if your client likes clean colors and their spouse/partner likes dirty colors? How do you make them both happy within the same house?

    • Maria Killam says:

      Great question, clean and dirty is relative, it depends. Steer them towards a conversation about creating a look and a feel. THAT’S what they BOTH want. We all want to love our home when we walk in the door and that’s why you are there, to help them create that! Maria

  • Sarah Adams says:

    I really appreciate you, Maria! I love your heart to help and teach. You may have already covered these, but I’d like to know: what to do with the large blank walls that reach to the second story in a 2-story living room, more on the tipping point of black in a room (with pics of too little, too much, and just right), how to choose deck stain color, window coverings that move completely out of the way (to let in light & heat in the winter) but also filter light when too hot or too much sun. Please enter me in the drawing 2x — I recently followed you on Instagram. Thank you!!

  • Maggie says:

    Maria, First off, I have never EVER commented on a blog before. I read a couple religiously (yours being one of them) but have always just liked flying under the radar. So today is a first for me and it feels appropriate to comment in honor of your 10 year anniversary to blogging, as you have inspired me so much over the year and a half I have been reading your blog. I literally see undertones everywhere! I am constantly studying kitchens, dining rooms, & living rooms old and new. I can pinpoint the “Era” something was designed in now! I love being educated by you! My dad is a financial advisor and my mom is also an interior designer. I always grew up admiring what my mom did with color, but always needed a logical explanation for why “it just worked”. Love my Mom, but she could never explain to me the “why”. I would always tell people I am half analytical and half creative. Until I found your blog I had no idea what “I wanted to be when I grew up”. I now understand that color is creative and analytical. Your “system” helped me finally understand (or at least start to understand) the world of design and color in terms that “clicked” for me. I am a young mom with 3 little kiddos running around, I help friends and family with design work when I can. I love accesorizing and picking a paint colors that compliments hard surfaces. I dream of the day when I can officially have my own business in design (hopefully when my kids start going to school full time). I would love to get to one of your Specify Colour with Confidence workshops, however, with 3 little kids and husbands busy work and travel schedule, it will still be a few years until I can get to one. If you have ever had the idea of having an online training of your Specify Colour with Confidence workshop, I would be the first one to sign up! At my point in life and motherhood, I don’t have the luxury to be traveling away from my kids for more than a few hours. I bought both your e-books over a year ago and constantly reference them! I know they only scratch the surface and can’t wait for the day when I can learn more. Thank you for helping me finally merge my two strengths together! I am forever grateful! Cheers, Maggie

    • Maria G. says:

      What a great idea. I would be the second to sign up! I’m certain an online version of your workshop would be a big success.
      Maria G.

  • Julianna Mathers says:

    Love your blog so much and I’m about to meet you in Dallas this morning where I will tell you happy anniversary in person! I can’t imagine what you haven’t covered yet except perhaps maybe some of the secrets of your photography. I know you hire a professional often, but when you do it yourself what are your tricks? I am also an Insta follower and I love your Insta stories! Happy anniversary and thank you for being our color and design guru!

  • Maggie says:

    Ah! I forgot! Of course I follow you on instagram too! I love your “stories”! I think the hotel bathrooms where they tried to bring tuscan era into the gray era are my favorites!

  • Amber says:

    I’ve have been a reader for years. When I bought my current house, everyone said it was “too plain and too white” – I knew from being your fan that I had found the proper canvas. I still adore my white cabinets and white tiles in the bathrooms.
    I don’t remember seeing a post on designing spaces for people with disabilities. I would love that.
    PS…the Italy post was not that bad. You had high expectations and were being honest and real.

  • Rita says:

    Love your blog excited to read everyone of them and have learned so much. My daughter even calls me Maria because she thinks I know so much about decorating haha.

  • Michelle says:

    Maria, congratulations on a wonderful and well deserved career. I love your blog, and have learned so much from it! One topic I would love to see is how to pick the best color for blinds or shades. I’m a TCE and looking forward to observing in Dallas today’

  • Sharon Shearer says:

    Congratulations Maria on your ten years anniversary. I wish I had found you sooner! You clarified the mysteries of color, which for those of us who are not trained designers yet still love design and decor, caused sleepless nights for me and many mistakes. You did an e-design for me on my home in Florida and even showed my before and after Kitchen and Master bath. When we went to sell that home a couple years later, it sold in three days! (2 houses of the same age, all were built in 1986, on either side of ours, were bought and torn down to be rebuilt, as they had never been updated) You are still the only designer who has given us the why, why we made mistakes in the past, and how to stop making them. I would love to continue to see more before and after views, with always the commentary that explains how you got there. I also am a follower on Instagram.

  • Shannon says:

    We just moved into a 1970’s ranch home and I am desperate for color inspiration!

  • Maria – as a long time reader and graduate of your course (the knowledge from which I use every…single….day in my business), the value you’ve added to my professional path is difficult to quantify but is most certainly monumental. Using your Specifying Color system and being reminded that we are all working hard to make our way through this world, flaws and all, (even the folks who seem perfect from the vantage point of our computer screens), are just two of the daily contributions you personally make to my life and work. I’m very grateful for the work you do. Thank you.

    • …oh and perhaps a deep dive post on one of the newer aspects of your course, for example, your tricks for online sourcing. I think you’ve done a post on this topic once (?) before but there’s so much ground that could be covered perhaps another one?

  • Mary Beth says:

    Congratulations on a decade of making our lives a little more colorful. Thank you for generously sharing your talents with us. I agree with Lynne’s suggestion. I would like to see a post on how to coordinate wood flooring with different types/stains of wood furniture. Also, when starting with a new home and endless possibilities, where do you begin? In which order do you select things? Thank you for your time and consideration.

  • Patricia Dickinson says:

    Maria, I have learned more about colour through your blog than I did in college studying interior decor. I read and re-read many of your posts. The one thing that is a bit disappointing, being Canadian, your workshops are predominantly in the U.S. and not in Canada.

  • Cheryl says:

    Congratulations, Maria.

    You are an excellent example of a successful entrepreneur of the female gender.

  • JoAnne says:

    Congratulations on your milestones! Since my birthday is on Nov. 2nd, I’m hoping my votes help you reach No 1!!! This is the only Blog I follow religiously! Because you are down to earth, funny, and wear your heart on your sleeve. You are human! Thank you for your beautiful pictures and colorful advice. I built my home before you started (2004) and sadly had to part with it when my husband’s health issues brought us to a halt. We’ve been renting for the past 3 years and have now decided to buy again. This time a 1954 brick ranch. The first time I saw it I thought of you and all you could do for it. I will be contacting you shortly for eDesign. I’m patiently waiting for the inspection. I read and reread your posts all the time. Thank you for everything you do. I’ve never had a chance to attend a workshop so that’s very generous of you for a chance to win one. Thank you!

  • Kim says:

    Congrats! I have been following you for a number of years – both your blog and on Instagram. When I read your comments a while back about why some people can never find the right paint color, it was a lightbulb moment for me. And like another commenter today, you are the reason I am sitting on a turquoise sofa right now! Again, congratulations, and here is to 10 more years!

    • Maria Killam says:

      I LOVE to hear that you have a turquoise sofa!! Hooray for colour, it’s just happy!! Thanks for your comment! Maria

  • Susan Bentkowski says:

    Congratulations to you and Terreeia in your creative journey by helping other creative individuals learn about color….the correct way. My best friend Cate Ormond (33 yrs.) is in Dallas today, attending your 3 day workshop. She is so excited to be there for so many reasons….and I’m thrilled she is following her desires. Cate introduced you to me and I have encouraged my creative friend to surround herself with the best of the best….what a wonderful experience for all who learn from you and others who attend. Live,love and laugh.

  • Wendy Woloshchuk says:

    Congratulations on 10 Years! And THANK YOU for all you do! I know it’s made a difference in my business.

  • Fonda Gantt says:

    I have been reading your blog for just a few months. I have learned so much. Your way of teaching really helps me understand. What would I like to see in the future? How to make rooms flow over an entire house, do we need the rooms to flow ? , how to mix traditional with modern. When and should you paint antiques ?

  • Kellee says:

    Congratulations for 10 years of growth and success! Best wishes for the future. You are so lucky to be able to share your success with your Mom, Hellen!
    Though I only discovered your blog this summer, I feel fortunate as I try to educate myself before I select paint colors and many furnishings for our 1898 Greek Revival renovation in South Georgia purchased 5 years ago as our eventual retirement home.
    I was so excited when my husband agreed your Specify Color program in Charleston, SC would be work with our return to GA this fall. Unfortunately, my Mom’s home sale listing, decluttering, staging, sale and move this weekend have took over my summer and has delayed our return South. I hope you hold another event in the South next spring or fall or the Mid-Atlantic during the summer!
    Thank you for your inspiration and keep it coming!

  • Linda Jordan says:

    Wow! I remember your first header. I have had many email subscription and most have come and gone. I make sure I keep yours. One of my favorite things in reading your blogs were the pictures of your family and in particular your nephews. They both are so cute, but the youngest one looks so much like you. You probably won’t remember me, but I got a B Moore store to host you here in Atlanta. Your workshop and what I learned set my career on fire in the world of choosing paint colors for decor. I have followed you so long, I can say so much but I will just say Thank you for sharing you beautiful light. Wishing you continued success and great health.

  • Lisa Gauthier says:

    Maria, I still remember that post from 3 years ago. I remember thinking “ Wow, she is a little high maintenance, but really committed to surrounding herself in good design, no matter where she is.” I appreciate your over sharing and travel posts and Instagram pics. It’s on my bucket list to take your course, it will happen. Would love to see more before/afters on your personal consults- although I know that is difficult, due to photo requirements, etc.
    Keep doing what you are doing, ignore the haters and thanks for sharing your fabulous life with us here and on Instagram.

  • Stacey OConnor says:

    I would love to win any of these prizes! I look forward to your posts every time I see one in my in box. As a design enthusiast, I would love to know how to get started as a professional (classes to take or just a basic outline of steps to take). Congratulations on your accomplishments!


  • Sharon Abel says:

    Maria, I’ve been following you since finding you on a carpet company’s testimonials….at least 8 years and two houses ago. Since then we’ve designed and built our dream home and ALL your advice has been invaluable. Classic white kitchen, medium brown hardwood floors, exterior finishes and colours….the list goes on. Unfortunately your bossy fireplace advice was too late for me but at least I know why I’m not that thrilled with my ledgestone choice! Over the years I’ve subscribed, and unsubscribed to many design blogs…..but your remains the favourite! Congratulations on this anniversary and best wishes for your continued success and happiness!!

  • Jana Keener says:

    My Mother’s home has all white walls and ceilings. It is actually very elegant. Although I know most people would never do that, if one chose to go that direction, how would the white be chosen?

    • Maria Killam says:

      Hi Jana,
      Look around at what the primary existing white is right now in your home. Is it a true white, like pure white tile? Is it off-white, or is it cream? I recently arrived at a consultation where a couple had painted their condo decorator white (which is basically a true white) that they hated because it was looking green with the outside foliage. However, they had very little white at all in their decorating, but they did have a large cream sectional, which means CREAM was the best colour for their walls, not art gallery white at all. My white ebook will also help you here: Thanks for following me! xo

  • Chantal says:

    Congratulations! I have been a fan of your blog for a few years now, and more recently on Instagram! I would love to learn more about choosing colours depending on room orientation and the way the exterior foliage effects the colour in a room.
    Thank you Maria

  • Charlotte says:

    10 years! Congratulations! I’m excited every time I see one of your posts in my mailbox. I read and enjoy every one and love that you share yourself and your family as part of the package. Your blogs have enhanced my basic decorating abilities and have helped me decorate our home in BC and recently our temporary home here in Australia. Thank you!!

    I also follow you in Instagram!

  • Rebecca Schildroth says:

    Happy 10th anniversary. I have been reading you for 8 of those years – my guess, At one time I went back to the first post to see what I could glean.

    Not sure about what you should write about. Maybe how a color – wall, carpet, counter can change in different lighting and different surroundings.

  • sherri clark says:

    Happy 10th anniversary, what a milestone in your highly competitive and changing business, congratulations!
    My husband is a custom home builder, and I help a bit with color and design, but I am not even close to being a professional. Your resources have been such a godsend to me, our clients and all the friends I send your way! I own each of your books, as well as your online class series. Thank you, thank you, thank you!
    The whole concept of creating something that will have a timeless and classic look is what continues to draw me to your site, I only wish I had found you before we built our own home 12 years ago.
    I always enjoy seeing how you update older trends/hard finishes (like we now have) with color, etc. it gives me hope and ideas, keep them coming!

  • Noni says:

    Congratulations. You are amazing. You’ve helped me and so many people see the truth about colour. Thank you!

  • Leslie says:

    My lovely you are only getting started! Congratulations! ?

  • Andrea says:

    QMy only regret is that, seven years ago, I wish I had found you six months earlier BEFORE i bought my HUD house. I repainted every surface in safe, tail-end-of-the-Tuscan-brown colors. Then I discovered your blog and have been covering up yuck colors ever since. You speak your mind and stand behind your opinion clearly so that I (mostly) understand. Keep doing the posts showing examples of real houses and colors, typical mistakes and remedies, and color palettes that give us ideas. Never get enough of those!
    I already follow you on Instagram! Cingrats on 10000 followers and here’s to another ten blogging years!

  • Robin says:

    I have been following you for 5 years now. Your content and delivery of your knowledge is constantly evolving, which is a sign of growth to me. I thank you for sharing it so graciously. One day I hope to attend one of your courses and be able to use your services. Thank you again and congratulations on these wonderful accomplishments.

  • Bridget Schopp says:

    Congratulations on 10 years! Maria, I have been happily following you for 6 years and have gained a wealth of knowledge for my business while being entertained by your writing style and candor at the same time! I’d love to win a seat at a Specify Color with Confidence workshop, as I already own and use your color boards weekly with clients and have purchased and read your books as well. (If you are a designer and don’t own Maria’s paint boards, buy them today! They’ll forever change how you choose paint colors.) I’d like you to write about a typical day/week and how you manage your time between online shopping, meeting with clients, blog writing, doing on-line consults, having family time, etc. It’s a lot to manage/balance! PS. I also already follow you on Instagram.

  • Christine says:

    Happy Anniversary to Colour Me Happy!

    10 years is a huge chunk of time and major writing commitment. I regularly read your posts and gain knowledge …..every….single….time! I do hope to win a trip to your 2 day course as it’s been on my to do list for a few years!!
    Topic I would love to read…..history of colour schemes re; pre mid century, 70s, 80s to present. I find it so interesting and cyclical.

  • Wendi Gee says:

    Hi Maria. I’ve recently discovered you so I have lots of blog posts to catch up on! I’d love info on ceiling paint color and lots of info on all things exterior paint (trim, soffit, brick, things to avoid or be careful of), etc. I look forward to lots of reading. I would LOVE to attend your course or get the boards! Im working on launching my interior design business…should be going in early 2019.

    And I also follow you on Instagram already. 😉

  • Carlyn Marron says:

    Hi Maria. I’ve been following you for years and I remember the old header. I don’t do professional design work, but I love color and design and work on my own home frequently. I’ve always had a good eye for color and design, but it’s been great to read about your system and know WHY something doesn’t look right. It helps me explain to friends and family, too.

    I live in a hundred year old craftsman style house and would love a post about how to paint and style old homes without losing their original feel.

  • Victoria says:

    Lucky me I found you in 2008. Have shared your blog with many.
    Congratulations on 10 years! Will follow on Instagram.
    Have to tell you I was overjoyed when I found you because many of we share so many ideas about
    timeless design. It was like this gal lives in my head. Hope that makes sense. Much happiness to you and your family.

  • Susan Clifton says:

    Thank you Maria for all of the great information you’ve posted on your blog! I find myself using it over and over. I’m new to your blog, and I would love your insight about mixing painted furniture and wood tones in one space. Additionally, what’s the trend with mixing finish colors for light fixtures, lamps, picture frames, cabinet hardware etc. ? I’m in the middle of a remodel and find myself stuck trying to blend old and new. Congratulations on your 10 year anniversary!

    Thank you!

    • Maria Killam says:

      Thanks Susan, I have written a few posts about painted furniture, just search ‘maria killam, painted furniture and the others will come up, here’s one
      The trend with mixing finishes is that everyone’s doing it, and you should repeat it at least once to make it look intentional. So for example in my master bath which I will post shortly, the faucets and towel rods are chrome while my sconces and mirror including the framed artwork in my bathroom are gold. Hope that helps, thanks for following me! Maria

  • Sheila says:

    Congrats on 10 years! I read ur blog faithfully! I have zero decorator’s instincts , so ur system helps me so much!

  • nirma says:

    Hi Maria,
    Congratulations on your 10 years of blogging! Your posts are always filled with helpful advice. I have particularly learned so much about how bossy white is and how to have better room flow with my interior color choices. Thank you!
    I would love to see a post about painting the exterior of the house (wood siding) when there is orangey/red brick trim on a wall and carried out on walkways etc. Not easy to repaint and eliminate. Also geographically speaking, in New England, it’s a common trim.
    Familiar wherever you turn but people tend to use white or grey to coordinate with the brick.
    Thanks again and keep up the good work!

  • Leasa Brown says:

    Congratulations Maria! One thing I’d like covered is where and how do you find people to help you reach the vision you have of your home? For example, I want to re-work our fireplace and know it will take a trim carpenter but, where do I find them? After I find my, example trim carpenter of my dreams, how do I communicate my vision? I’m a visual person but drawing impaired. Are pins and other images enough? I want to be a good client. How do I do that?

  • Heather says:

    Congratulations on 10 years! I have been a reader of your blog for just under two years – and like many others I suspect – I wish I found it earlier! Thankfully, you and your fabulous team were able to give me great advice about my kitchen and dining areas which saved the day! I look forward to partnering with you on my living room soon :-). Keep blogging – it’s literally the only email I actively look for every week!!

  • LMC says:

    Maria, Happy Anniversary! What a pleasure it has been reading your blog for the past seven years. You have taught me so much about color, particularly undertones, and I have passed on what I’ve learned from you to others, as I’m sure many other readers have. No doubt your influence is much broader and deeper than anyone can imagine. I also admire your talent as a stylist. You are a magician at taking an average room and styling it into a knock-out without spending huge amounts of money or effort. The pictures you use to illustrate your blogs are always stunning and after reading, I find myself returning to study them. One of the most important lessons I have learned from you is to be mindful of the details. Thank you for sharing your knowledge and experience.

  • Barbara says:

    Happy anniversary!
    I’d love to see a post about how to update an 80s living room, piece by piece.

  • Barb says:

    THANK YOU MARIA AND TERRIA for an amazing run!! I love reading your posts and have learned so much! Thank you so much for all you that you give to us in your posts and your incredible design seminars!!! And thank you for being so honest and transparent – you are both the best!!

  • Such a huge milestone, congratulations! I have a kitchen and bath showroom and have won awards for designs. When I happened upon you (not sure what I was searching for in a google search, but you popped up!), I had never even realized that I was constantly struggling with the undertones. I’ve dug into your blogs and books and have been forever changed. My projects are even better due to you, so thank you!
    I hate that you ever had to worry about sharing your wife with the world! The world would be a better place if everyone could just love. I’m glad that you have had mostly support, she is a huge part of who you are 🙂
    I couldn’t even begin to tell you what to blog about, but my struggle is always the right white with the right quartz product. Everyone still wants a white on white and when I explain the complexity of finding white cabinet color, white tile and white counter all with the same undertones, my clients still don’t get it most of the time!
    I pray my budget will allow me to attend one of your classes soon! My husband has been my biggest advocate and was willing to front our life’s savings to allow me to open shop 5 years ago. I’ve done well enough that he was able to retire from a job he hated last year.
    Stay strong in posting what you believe in and always remember that you have far more who love you and ignore the “hate” mail, I’m sure you get some and that has to be so difficult

  • Carol Corley says:

    Oh my; I’ve missed 10 years?? I just found you a few months ago, and you are a godsend. We’re doing a mid-century whole-house remodel, and all I knew for sure is that the go-to colors I’ve used in past Tudors wouldn’t work. I’ve always been good at seeing when colors don’t work together, but never had the foggiest idea why–and I’ve never been efficient at picking colors that do work well together; it’s often taken several tries. When I found you and started devouring your blogs, it all came clear. Bless you for that. Though this may be covered in past blogs I’ve yet to see, I’m craving more info on choosing exterior colors, deciding which outside features to highlight with colors different from the base and whether to paint or stain brick. I’d also love more on maintaining a whole-house sense of continuity when using different colors for rooms. Oh, and bless you for the color boards. They are crazy useful and everyone wants them!

    • Maria Killam says:

      Haha everyone sure does want those boards once they see them! I have written a bunch of exterior posts, just scroll down to my sidebar where you’ll see all my labels and click exterior colour! Thanks for following me! Maria

  • Barb says:

    PS – Congratulations!!

  • Amy S says:

    Happy anniversary, Maria! Your blog has transformed the way I see everything—just ask my husband! “It’s all about the undertones…”. I am totally a layperson—not in the business at all, but my dream is to one day attend your seminar. I so appreciate that you have made color accessible and purposeful. Perhaps I’ve missed the blog in the 5 years I’ve been following, but I’d love to see one on dealing with rooms that have minimal natural light (our house faces east, has a front porch that blocks light and is in a neighborhood inundated by trees). I follow you on Instagram.

  • Bexky says:

    Congratulations Maria! An area I see a need for more focus is in brand new construction. How do you select a color pallet when you are building a new home? What do you select first and last? Each purchase affects the next ie; furniture, drapery, bedding. Flooring, walls, cabinets. How to design a home with color?

    Keep up the great work and fingers crossed my name is drawn!

  • Stacee says:

    Happy 10 years and here’s to 10 more! I found you just 4 years ago while my house was nearing construction. I went back and read everything you had posted!
    You saved me from a couple mistakes that I was able to correct at that stage of construction, but when we built 2 years later, I was able to take everything you taught me through your blogs and ebooks and incorporate it all!
    Our newest house is fabulous and I know it will be for years to come!! Simple is classic!
    Many thanks to you and Terreeia!

  • Elizabeth Sproule says:

    Congrats! I love your blog and instagram. I love that you sometimes over share. It makes you seem real and approachable. My favorite non-design stories are about you and your wife- you both seem so happy and it’s such a pleasure to hear about your life together! The design posts I’d like to see more about are the slow process of moving into a new space and adapting it over time (and with a strict budget). I’d love to hear more about what to address first, second, etc.

  • Heather says:

    Thank you, Maria. As a staying at home self designer with no training, but someone who loves her home and decorating it, I appreciate the knowledge and insights you have passed on. I dont think I’ve found much information on how to decorate around existing flooring. We live in a 103 year old home with 1.5 inch original oak floors that HAVE to stay the way they are because they can’t be sanded down anymore. I heard a designer tell me, 10 years ago, that I needed cool colors to balance the floor color. What do you think? Thx!

    • Maria Killam says:

      Cool and warm are totally relative. You can always find a cooler colour and you can always find a warmer one! Focus on coordinating the paint colour to your decorating instead of the floor! Hope that helps, Maria

  • Kay says:

    Happy 10th and many more. For lots of us that have small homes – will you please do a post on how to decorate a small master bedroom. I would like my room to be noticeable but the footprint is small – so it looks like an ordinary bedroom. Thanks for all that you do.

  • Gayle Ahrens says:

    I am forever grateful for you and your fabulous course.
    Happiest Anniversary !!!

  • Kelly Weaver says:

    Congrats Maria! I have followed your blog for many years and am fortunate enough to have taken your class. We just moved into our new home and could not be more pleased with how it turned out, thanks to you! If you have not taken the color class please put it on top of your list to do, you will not be disappointed! Classic and Timeless ❤️

  • Gayle Ahrens says:

    I am forever grateful for you and your fabulous course.
    I remember very well “Colour Me Happy”….

    Happiest Anniversary !!!

  • Cindy says:

    Thanks for all your posts. Please come to Denver.
    I’m not on IG, but have 2 of your iBooks.

  • Maggie S says:

    Congratulations on your ten year anniversary Maria!! You were the very first blog I found..9 years ago (YIKES- I can’t believe that it was so long ago!!) I spent the weekend going back and reading ALL of your old posts -I LOVED everyone!! I used to buy 3-4 samples of paint and spent weeks mixing them and trying them on the wall to find a color that I was happy with, I don’t have to do that anymore! I have all your books and my home is painted with Maria Killam chosen colors!!

    Let me tell you what has happened to me from reading your blog. I found Kristy Barnett, The Decorologist (and others) from the list of blogs you liked–I discovered that I had a passion to help people with their homes so I went and took Kristy’s Home Staging class and I am now a home stager–and loving my creative life!! And I have you and your blog to thank for that!

    I think your success is due to 3 things-your work ethic, your gift to educate, and your authentic voice. Don’t feel bad about anything you wrote -you are a real imperfect person (as we all are). One of the gifts of getting older is learning to accept your self. I am from Pittsburgh and this week (after the terrible shooting here) everyone is talking about Mr. Rogers(who lived here) and his wonderful message of acceptance. As Mr. Rogers would say …I like you just the way you are!
    I really enjoy your highlighting real people and the problems they are having and would like to see more of that.
    I’m looking forward to another 10 years of your inspiration!!

  • Victoria Austin says:

    Congratulations, beautiful Maria and Teeria! So blessed to have witnessed the extraordinary growth in you and your calling to color our world since discovering and subscribing to your blog. I love following you on Instagram too. It’s been fun following you on your mission. I have even considered coming to one of your color classes here in Dallas as I continue to feel the nudge toward my more creative side. I’m not sure what new thing you can write about. You have shared a lot of goodness in the last 10 years. Thanks for all the great posts! Keep it up and I’ll keep following!

    • Maria Killam says:

      Victoria you were my very first subscriber, I can’t even believe it! Thanks for following me all these years!! xoxo

  • Colleen says:

    Maria, can we purchase your color wheel?


  • Pam says:

    Happy Anniversary. So glad I found your blog! I have learned so much and realized how much more I have to learn!
    I am a kitchen designer; If you could write more about how to pull together a great (foolproof?) plan for colors and hard surfaces that I could share with my clients, that would be amazing.

  • Sandee Doss says:

    Congratulations, Maria!
    How about a post on stained concrete floors and how to tie in wall color thru house? Kemiko stains make popular black (which turns up grayish on most floors depending on what strength you go with) there are mahogany stains, brown etc.
    *I follow you on Insta!!
    Happy Hallo-versary!!

  • Dusti says:

    Hi Maria! I’m new to learning about you in the last month. Since then, I have so enjoyed your ebook and the insights you share in your blog posts. I’m just dreaming about attending your training weekend someday (but have to save up for that), owning your color cards, and reading more of your colorful insights!
    Since I’m new, you have very likely covered one of these topics, but I’d be curious to learn more about combining wood finishes with paint (ex: yellowish oak trim) and what wood flooring finish is the simpliest to combine paint colors? Also, learning about color trends would be so fascinating! I would love to know where colors are going after all the gray and white.
    Another idea is discussing color patterns and trends of the past (ex: 90’s) and how to update those paints in a home without always needing to repaint every single surface. Maybe there is no other option, but it seems overwhelming to find paints that coordinate well with ceilings and trim without the updated color looking terrible.
    I’d so so love an online e-course, similar to your weekend color trainings, but possibly less cost ?
    So appreciate all your doing to teach and train my eye to see colors as they actually are! Thank you!!!

  • Kelli says:

    Congratulations Maria! I am a new subscriber but am so glad that your name came up on my search for color advice. In just a few weeks my understanding of color has really expanded and I am beginning to develop an eye for undertones! It has helped me begin to think about ways that I can be braver with color and also helped me think about how to make the most of the miles of travertine we inherited with our current home. It has gotten me excited to expand outside my comfort zone and try to make our home more “us.” Thank you! I would love the opportunity to take your course some day. Regarding your blog, since I’m a new subscriber, I’m still making my way through the older posts. I thought that your post about designing an interior in Houston was really interesting, and would love to read your insights about working within various regional trends. For example, I can imagine that creating a kitchen in an area such as Santa Fe, with its earthy, organic architecture and “dirty” colors must present a very different set of challenges than working in a place like Charleston, with its clear pastels.

  • Jo says:

    Congratulations! What an accomplishment! Your course is on my bucket list. Any plans for doing a post on commercial color selection?

  • Franci says:

    Congrats, Maria. I’ve been following since the early days. I know you are busy, but I miss more regular blog posts, and I do follow on Instagram. Would love to win. Thanks for the opportunity.

  • Carol Frampton says:

    Congratulations Maria! Yours is one of my favorite blogs. I’ve been a faithful reader for about 5 years and I follow you on Instagram. I love your house and especially your garden. I wish I had found you before we did our master bath renovation – while I like it I know I now know I would have preferred going all-white. I’m most interested in colors, and ideas for keeping a 30-year old house and garden current.

  • Mel says:

    Congratulations, 10 years, WOW! I have been following you for about 5 or 6 years. Can’t believe how much I’ve learned about what I shouldn’t have done, my pre-Maria phase I call it! Your course is tops on my bucket list. I was able to use your exterior paint services for the commercial building my family owns. We just love driving up to work and seeing the color palette everyday and receive many compliments from the locals. If you haven’t done one, I would love to see a post about how to choose paint and decor for open floor plans. My entry, kitchen, living room and office are open to another. I find it very challenging so everything is shades of cream and beige for now. I’d love some color but not sure how to incorporate them all cohesively. Cheers to you and your talents!

  • Marcy says:

    Congratulations on 10 years and on building such a successful business! I have followed you for years, designed a new kitchen from your blog and used your edesign service. When we sold our home, 10 years after the kitchen reno, it sold immediately…because of the white, timeless kitchen!

  • Leslie Lewis says:

    Congrats. Love your blog!

  • Suzanne says:

    Happy Anniversary, Maria! Like the other commenters, I’m a huge fan. I have all of your eBooks, all of your color samples, and I recommend you to anyone who will listen. I’m not a professional, but an avid amateur. I would LOVE to attend your True Color Expert workshop – come to Memphis! Here’s my idea for a post: as we age, accessibility becomes more of an issue. How do we blend style with these (often institutional) aids?

  • Patricia says:

    Congratulations on 10 years and the way your hard work has paid off for you. I am thankful that I found your blog, that I’ve learned so much from you, and that you write honestly. I’m struggling to come up with something new for you to write about. I always enjoy the before and afters – the recent one of a front door and another one of an e-design consult – so keep doing those. Also enjoyed the recent post showing the stylish home of a True Color Expert, so maybe more of those. (still thinking…) We know colors are trendy – tuscan brown, gray, current examples – but aren’t furniture styles trendy, too? If we’re trying to keep timeless and classic with colors, should we keep timeless and classic with furniture? For example, it seems since Mad Men was on TV, mid century modern has become the style du jour. Is that just trendy? Whatever you write about, I’ll continue to read. Happy anniversary. And Happy Halloween. 😉

  • Hi Maria,
    I have been following you since the beginning too. I have no problem imagining how to change a layout but like everyone else color choices are somewhat overwhelming. Your blog has helped me simplify the process. So many of your great tips have become second nature to me now. Thank you, thank you, thank you.
    I would like you to illustrate how different a warm color (and also a cool color )changes in different natural lights as well as in day light and night light. This is my most difficult challenge,
    BTW I love your personal stories and remember well the day you introduced Terreeia. The loving support of your faithful readers was great!

  • Linda says:

    Happy 10-year anniversary!

    The value of your blogs is that they cover so much more than just color. I have been working with a “designer” for months now to design our next home. I recently learned that I should be working with an architect, an interior designer and the contractor. In actuality, I am working with only a former contractor who knows building code and construction. It has been up to me to fill in the gaps, and that has required a lot of research on my part.

    “Will My Cabinets Look Dated Even If I Paint Them” was especially timely. I was planning on running my kitchen cabinets up to the ceiling. But my ceilings will be 10′ high, and I am wondering how safe it will be for me in my retirement years to climb up a ladder to access those really high cabinets. The pretty soffits you showed may be the answer.

    “What Everyone Should Know About Joy” helped me to understand why my husband wants a curved driveway instead of a straight one. As I pick out design elements for our home, I will be looking for rounded features as opposed to squared off ones.

    Thanks to “10 Steps to Create the Rest of the Room” I have already purchased my patterned duvet covers. From the covers I have determined the color of my sheets. And from the color of my sheets, I have determined the color I want to paint the tray ceiling in our master bedroom.

    I can’t find it now, but I just loved the blog you shared about Claudia Ricciardone’s remodel. Her home looked so cohesive and beautiful – it was truly an inspiration.

    Through your blog I have also learned about the blogs of other designers. While I am not following those blogs like I do yours, checking them out has also given me valuable new ideas for our new home.

    I must confess that I lean towards “dirty” colors as opposed to the “clean” ones. I find them more calming, and at this stage of my life, I am looking for calm. And yet I have truly enjoyed all of the posts that you have shared of your own home. Your “clean” colors look bright and invigorating. And cheerful. And I just love your beautiful yard!

    Thank you, Maria, for your wonderful posts. They have inspired and educated me more than I can express!

  • Kristyn White says:

    Congratulations! It’s so wonderful that you were and are able to turn your creative passion into a successful career. I am a newer follower in the scheme of things but am thankful for your blog’s 10-year (searchable) history. I would love to see a solution to what I believe is a common kitchen design issue. Many kitchens have windows over the sink. Unfortunately not all of those windows have scenic views. Is there a nice looking top-down bottom-up window treatment that would give light and privacy (while say washing dishes in my PJs) but also edure occasional splashes? Many thank yous for your practical and timeless design advice.

  • Emily B says:

    I’m Soo thankful for your blog! There is such a huge difference from how we redid our bathroom B.M. (Before Maria, haha), and our lovely white kitchen, A.M.
    You still need to do many before and after school, because I love seeing the transformations.

  • Angelle says:

    I’m in Dallas now and about to attend day one of your Specifying Colour with Confidence course which is something I’ve been wanting to do for over five years! I just did a complete overhaul on my staircase and would have loved to have had a blog post to refer to about timeless and classic staircases. In any case, I believe that I made the right choices simply because I have been following your blog for several years and have read all of your e-books. Congratulations on 10 years! You are a rock star in my book! ⭐️

  • Nancy says:

    Maria and Terreeia – Happy twenty years and Happy Ten years !!!
    I remember when I first Found your Blog.
    I was like who
    Is this lady ?
    I had to sign up and couldn’t get enough and still can’t …
    I have learned more from your blogs then I could ever dream possible …
    Thank You Maria and Terreeia you both are great at what you do .
    You have not only shared your knowledge of color and design with us .
    You have shared your family
    Your journeys
    Your heart and your soul .
    Wishing you both many more years of health , happiness and success !

  • Sue Markley says:


    Ten years! Congratulations.

    Your blogs are the first ones read. Something is gleaned from every single blog you write.

    I attended your Washington DC TCE in 2016 and it was the best investment I ever made in myself. The TCE Facebook page is invaluable. The large color samples are indispensable.

    Keep up the fantastic work.

  • Cindy Cook says:

    I am a real estate broker in Chicago and just recently started following your blog. It has helped me tremendously in helping clients choose neutral paints to freshen up before listing. Thank you! How about a blog about ceiling color? I know ‘ceiling white’ isn’t always the best choice! Happy 10 yr anniversary!

  • Hannah says:

    Congrats Maria! You have been a blessing to me….I am always looking forward to reading your post. Keep up the good work!

  • Candice Hill says:

    Hi, Maria…Do you have anything to say about art in closets? Does that sound silly? Does it look stupid? I find when any room or long hall or closet feels empty, I hang up some art.That ‘s one of the 1st things we did after placing the furniture in our, new to us, house, because it felt so lonely and so far away from home. . Decorating is like therapy, it makes me feel so good. I know there usually isn’t room for that sort of thing in closets, but my walls are tall and not full. Maybe this a good psychology question, involved with decorating.Maybe this can spark something for you. I couldn’t think of anything, you haven’t covered. I reread things that you write and always learn something else, that I missed or wasn’t in the right frame of mind for, at the time..And I did see my error, with taupe and NOT simply white. I think I’m just so obsessed with no cream! Love off white!You’ve got it all though!! I love it all! And I follow you on Instagram! Love you to pieces. Candy

  • Alisha says:

    Your blog is one of my favorites. I’ve enjoy seeing more posts on exterior issues – lots of them out there! Congratulations on all your success!

  • Loren, Blue Door Decor says:

    10 years and 10 thousand!
    Congratulations to you and your team.
    Your colour boards transformed my business, making it possible for me to quickly and accurately choose colours. More importantly, I’m able to show my clients ‘why’ the colour is the right choice. Thank you.
    One of the reasons I follow your posts, here and Instagram, is because you keep it real. With humour.
    Keep it coming!

  • Louise Mate says:

    Congratulations on 10 years! I only found your blog about 1.5 years ago but have learned so much about color and decorating to the point that my confidence has gained enough to actually try out some ideas on my own. I also love exploring and reading your old blogs.
    I wish you continued success for another 10 years plus!

  • Nicky McElfresh says:

    I am so grateful you started this blog 10 years ago! You’ve helped me learn so much about color in the two years I’ve been studying design. Though I know you’ve touched on this some in your blog, I think many people could use advice on how to update their builder-basic houses. I’ve been going through my own 18-year-old builder-basic home, making changes that work with what I’ve been given. For instance, I chose a medium brown wood-look tile with enough color variations to relate to my oak trim.

    Also, I’d love to see advice on how much the light fixtures in your house should relate to one another.

    Keep up the amazing work! I’d love to win any of those prizes!

  • Susan Langley says:

    I would appreciate an article with advice on painting woodwork, around doors, windows, archways. Many times I am afraid to paint woodwork in one room without continuing all throughout the house. I have stained woodwork, walnut/cherry color, and would like to brighten up some rooms with white woodwork, but don’t particularly want to do the whole house.

  • Cindy Cook says:

    I am a real estate broker in Chicago and just recently started following your blog. It has helped me tremendously in helping clients choose neutral paints to freshen up before listing. Thank you! How about a blog about ceiling color? I know ‘ceiling white’ isn’t always the best choice! LOL Happy 10 yr anniversary!

  • Carolynne says:

    Happy 10 Colorful Years from an Instagram follower! My thoughts on a topic I haven’t seen covered—Is there such a thing as “masculine” design? I am a lady who is more drawn to interiors designed for men but not sure why. I’m not referring to man caves, hunting or sports-themed decor, and other looks that focus on traditionally “male” interests. Aside from avoiding pink and frilly trims, what gives a room that look?

  • Rhonda says:

    Happy Tenth Year Anniversary! I’ve been here from the beginning and have learned an amazing amount of valuable information from you! I even had a phone consult with you, and appreciated all the changes you told me to make. The transformation in my kitchen, and ultimately my home, didn’t happen exactly as you specified, but following your suggestions and principles, it looks beautiful! I never want to leave home!

  • Rachel says:

    Been reading you for 5 years. Bought your ebooks. Love your expertise, sense of style and personality. Even though I am not a design professional, I also like reading posts like this one that gives a peak into the business aspect of what you do … and also the family aspect of who you are. 🙂 Would love to know if you recommend white cabinets and backsplash in a north-facing, low-light kitchen – and if so, some posts on how to pull that off well?

  • Marianna says:

    Congratulations Maria, I always look forward to reading your posts and find them very informative and eye-catching! It is great to find practical advice on how to make your surroundings beautiful. I especially appreciated the message about being be prudent in selecting finishes that will stand the test of time.

  • Diane Suess says:

    Happy happy anniversaries Maria. I am always so excited when I open my email to see a post from you.
    I have been following you for about 7 months since taking an online color consultation course and the instructor referenced you multiple times. Since starting my business – although still in its infancy – I have purchased the color boards and your 2 ebooks. I feel so confident to use the boards to compare colors and have the knowledge to explain why I recommend one color over another. My goal for 2019 is to get more ahead financially and attend your workshop. Please accept my gratitude for doing what you do to make us all successful. Hugs

  • Kim says:

    Wow, congratulations Maria, on these 2 huge milestones! I’ve been a loyal reader for many years now, have all your books, and took your Renovate With Confidence online course. I’m a design enthusiast, not a design professional, and the information I’ve gleaned from you over the years enabled me to design my dream bathroom earlier this year. Thanks so much for keeping it real here on the blog and sharing your color system with the world. <3

  • Debra says:

    Congratulations Maria ! Happy10 year anniversary !
    I have been following you for 7 years and have to say you have changed the way I see color. I have your e books, they have been so helpful over the years ,attending one of your classes is something I always wanted to do. So happy to have found “Color me Happy.” ?

  • Shelley says:

    Congratulations on this milestone in your creative life! I enjoy your posts: colour related and personal and hear myself asking “dirty or clean” when I see colours. I often suggest my friends check out your blog when they’re trying to choose colour palettes or updating their homes. I would enjoy a post on choosing carpet colour. Paint is easy to do again but carpet is a longtime investment and influences all further colour choices. Im following you on Instagram.

  • Dana Tucker says:

    Maria, I’ve been faithfully reading your blog for over 8 years and have learned so much!!! I would love to win!!! When I started reading your blog, we were a cabinet painting company. With the confidence I gained by reading your blog, I began offering color consultations and now kitchen remodeling and design. I use your Large Paint Samples in my consultations but would LOVE to have the full set. It’s also a goal to take one of your Specify Color courses. I could kick myself for not taking the class when you were in Nashville. Please come back.

    I would love to see you write about “not tiling above the 5″ inch countertop backsplash” that should always be removed when tiling the backsplash. In my opinion it is either/or. Not both. I go into soooooo many kitchens where they have bossy granite with a 5″bossy backsplash and then multi-color stone tiled backsplashes on top. Please help the kitchens of the world with this little detail. I’ll share it far and wide. Thanks!

  • Dianne Thompson says:

    Hi Maria,
    I’ve been following you for a number of years now. I am not a decorator but have gained invaluable advice from you when I needed to pretend to be a professional…and when I did my best to make decisions like you have shown us how to do, I had excellent results! Your blog helped me create the most charming space in my little dream summer cottage in Michigan (if I may say so myself!). That project gave me the confidence to specify finishes for a small resort of tiny cottages that my husband and I are developing right now. I just keep repeating the mantra, “keep it timeless” or “what would Maria do?” Lol. All this to say: Thank you. I have enjoyed your blog, advice, writing style and personality immensely. Someday, I will take your Specify Color with Confidence course and I can’t wait! I am looking forward to working with you soon because my husband and I have arranged an on-line color consultation for the exterior of one of our hotels. Congrats on 10 years! (Oh, and I have followed you on instagram.) I don’t think you need help on blog topics…you always seem to hit all of the bases and feel relevant.

  • Kim says:

    Maria: The history of how you birthed this blog is inspiring and a testament to your focus, perseverance and creativity. Sincere Congratulations! More importantly, your success is a tribute to the support you have had from both your mom and Terreeia. What wonderful people they must be and your accomplishments are wonderful gifts to them both!

    I only recently (within the last 6 months) discovered your blog so I have no history about which to write but I am impressed at the number of Ah-Ha moments I have had while reading. I am in the process of moving from CA to NC and am leaving a small home behind that lived well in warm shades of beige (yes, with pink undertones). It was my first house to decorate and while I struggled with decisions on color, I now realize — thanks to your blog — why the choices were tough. I am visual and my husband suspected it was just me being picky. I am happy to know that is an inaccurate assessment!

    What I would love to see — and if you have written about this already I’m still trying to find how to access old blogs from your site (is there a library link I am missing? ) — is how you stretch your color theory into accent pieces and artwork or perhaps how they complement each other. A room is always better for its “jewelry” and I would love to hear some creative thoughts on projects you’ve done. A little insight into an artist’s mind so to speak! Congratulations again on your inspiring blog! And having never won anything, I am hoping to win a set of those color boards which I was just planning to order! What a great way to start off in a new home!

    • Maria Killam says:

      Hi Kim, scroll down to the sidebar where you’ll see the archives section and you can select month by month! Thanks for your comment, Maria

  • Margaret Anna Robertson says:

    Congrats. Love your blog. How about a post for the Mellinials, studio apartments?

  • kathy spadafore says:

    Dear Maria, congratulations on your 10th year of colour me happy. I look forward to reading your blog and find them very educational and inspiring! As I am about to embark into my retirement years from working in public health I must admit the design world has and will always be my ultimate dream, while reading your blogs you have resonated the importance of following your passions, It is my hope that I can attend one of your workshops to kick start my own passion, till then keep up the great work and your awe inspiring blogs Maria!

  • Cheryl says:

    Hi Maria,
    I have only been following for about a year but I have learned a lot. You may have written about this in the ten years, but I would like to know more about layering of colours, patterns and objects in the room to achieve a depth of “tone” that is really pleasing to the eye. Would love to win one of your anniversary prizes. Congrats on ten years!

  • Amy says:

    I think your blog provides great practical device. I think a key to your success is that you’ve mostly focused on an area – color and undertones and your system – which differentiates you from the many design bloggers which are usual more general. One of my favorite things you do is break it down for readers — example: this works if your house looks like this (insert photo of super high end professionally designed home with expensive everything and glorious view), but not when it looks like this (the average home the majority of us have). I would love to see more on coordinating wood tones, color flow through house, and choosing paint colors for furniture. I also would love a post discussing the use of darker or colored walls with white trim vs trim matching the walls (is this trendy?). I have a great case study 🙂 … mostly light home (Soft Chamois with off-white trim) but want to do go darker in my bedroom, but don’t want to paint the doors and trim, so not sure I’ll like the look as much as I do in the photos I see on social media.

  • Liz says:

    Congratulations Maria! I discovered your blog seven years ago in 2011 when we were furnishing our rental from scratch after traveling full time for over eight years in a large RV. Your blog has helped me now with three different homes.

    I ordered new furniture, rugs and art online for our current home, and I would love to see you post about getting the colors right. I did it by putting photos next to each other (and holding my breath until they were delivered), but there is probably a better way…a Maria way!

    Thank you for your hard work and dedication to beauty through color.

  • Julie kincaid says:

    Out of all the blogs I have read over the years, yours is the ONLY one to make a permanent and REAL impact. I’ve been reading for several years, and my only wish is that I had found you sooner.

    I’m not a design professional. I’m a mom of six from Alaska who happens to love home design. The other thing I love is when people give it to me straight and practical. That is why I love your blog. I can’t even count how many times I have quoted you over the years will helping others too.

    I’ve never shared me new home build with you, but i will now to help you see what you have done for someone like me. I think you will see your influence all over it. Thanks, and please keep writing!

  • Mary says:

    When I read about your color system, I often think about the trend in the 80s/early 90s of having your “color” done (I was a fall!). Have you ever considered applying your color system to personal style? How many people where pink beige and yellow – aaagh!

    • karen says:

      Happy anniversary to a beautiful and amazing person!

      I am a new fan from late 2017 and by reading your posts I’ve learned that I’m not crazy for always thinking in terms of “clean” or “true” colors vs “muddied” colors. I love the technical advice such as how to extend cabinets up to the ceiling and how you re-did your bathrooms.

      You offer the complete package!

      I would like to learn more about color flow throughout the house, especially in my 1920s (read older) home because I can’t be the only person not living in a loft or open concept space. How can we keep the charm which initially drew us to an older home in a lovely old neighborhood and still be relevant to today’s world???

      In particular: how to camouflage a TV screen? Speakers? Store a/v equipment?

      I would love to win one of your prizes but I love more your generosity and thoughtfulness. I don’t follow you on twitter but when you include relevant twitter posts at the end of posts I always click on them. Does that make me a follower? Lol!

      Thank you for all of it!

  • Congratulations Maria! I have been a longtime blog follower – still remember your original banner. My favourite memory: when you shared about your partner Terreeia — that made my heart sing and I am so happy for both of you! I have learned SO much from your blog and am so grateful. Waking up to your instagram posts is now something I share with my hubby – imagine that!

    The subject I would like to see you write about: how to successfully do upgrades in your renovations. I note that you have done this well in your new home. You don’t do everything at once, which most of us can’t afford to do. How to keep the flow, how to plan it out, etc. I know [from reading your blog] that if I upgrade one element … everything else will look dated and shabby. What to do? [I get overwhelmed and do nothing – not a good solution!] My sincere thanks for sharing your expertise with us!

  • Jane Osborn says:

    Maria, not sure when I found your blog, probably in the first year or two, but remember the original header and loved the name, Color Me Happy. I had a design business, including a retail decorating store for window treatments, wallpaper, accessories, and retired a few years ago. I studied psychology of color in my early days, and that helped me a lot working with clients. I really miss working with color, it does make me happy!!

    My favorite post was about not painting a dark room white to lighten it (just turns it gray). Used that many times! I really thought of taking your Dallas course (I’m in Oklahoma), but I just turned 70 and my husband doesn’t want me to work again. But maybe just color consulting? May join you yet! Anyway, congratulations on 10 fabulous years, your color wheel will be revolutionary, and I wish you only the best!!

  • sandi says:

    I am not really a “color person” as I love white, black, gray & any neutral—but I have been following you for 2 yrs. & you make color interesting—but for me it is still from a distance—but you do it well! I did follow your advice regarding backsplash & counter tops w/floor choices. That was huge in making my home work. Thank you.
    Maybe I will win your workshop visit & learn some more.

  • Emily says:

    I love your blog, all your advice has been so helpful and totally changed the way I see color! I dream about being able to attend one of your workshops someday!

  • Emily says:

    I also follow you on Instagram ?

  • Jane Cassidy says:

    Dear Maria, what a momentous post ! To celebrate the success of 10 years of making others’ lives so much more beautiful is truly an amazing accomplishment. And I especially LOVE that you thanked those closest to you, your supportive loving wife and your incredibly loving Mother. How lucky for you! I am especially grateful to you for all the years of lessons I’ve learned, but also the e-design for paint colors that you & your team helped me with, in choosing for my living room/dining and kitchen. I bit the bullet and did a navy blue in the living room, and WOW I could just hug my house when I come in each evening. I have an idea for a post that may seem out in left field, but am sure there are others who share my situation. My husband and I have three grown daughters, who live on their own. Before they all moved out, we fostered and adopted a little girl, she is now 10 years old. Our little girl has 2 small half-siblings (5 & 2 y/o), in another state who are now in foster care. We have been contacted by Children’s Services to move them to Florida and adopt them. Hence, my idea for a blog – when you reach 60 years old, and find your home needing to be transitioned to kid friendly again. As much as I love my new look, of less clutter, there seems to be a greater power telling us things will change and we will need ideas of how to make a 3/2 house work for three children and bigger family get togethers. In closing, congratulations of your milestone, I could not be prouder or more happy for you! PS: I remember the post from Italy that you referred to, personally I found it hysterical, because we’ve all been there when sheer frustration creates those moments of “omg ! I’m losing it!!” :hahaha : ) too bad the reader couldn’t appreciate your sincere sharing of a very trying situation – because we ALL have issues at some point in time. Exhale and move on! xo

  • Pam says:

    Congratulations Maria, I would love to see a blog post on ‘how to hire a professional’ or “what questions to ask your professional before signing the dotted line”. Despite trying to follow your adage of ‘hiring a professional will save you money’ , sometimes it can be difficult to find a professional that knows color, even when you are willing to pay for the best (not all professionals have taken your class yet ;)) The two times that I was grateful for hiring a professional was when I hired you. Keep up the great work.

  • Suzanne H. says:

    Happy 10th Anniversary Maria! I’ve been following your blog for a number of years and am always keen to read your newest blog posts. I’ve been avoiding going down the Instagram rabbit hole but maybe it’s time – I only follow a few decor blogs and I think I’m missing some great stuff from all of you! What I would like to see is something more on decorating small, ordinary townhouses; there’s a lot of those where I live. I see so many beautiful posts about homes (even small ones) that have lots of light, character and “rooms” you can work with but it’s a far cry from long, narrow homes with little natural light and a layout where you see everything with one look. I did find some from back in 2013 when you lived in a townhouse but not much otherwise. Cheers and here’s to many more years of Color Me Happy blogging!

  • Barb says:

    Love your blog and how your personality come through. I enjoy seeing real houses with delimmas and how we can decorate to suppress ills that can not be changed. I would like to see an article on styling a glass block window. Here in the southern US, builders in neighborhoods often use glass block in bathroom windows. I’d like to see how to decorate it so the glass block is turned into something more attractive. Congratulations on your anniversary. May you have many more years of successfully coloring the world!

  • Laura says:

    I really enjoy your blog! I would love to see a post addressing whether or not to mix metals in an open floor plan regarding cabinet hardware and light fixtures, etc. It would be great to see some photos of both mixed metals and matching metals, what not to mix, etc.

  • Kari says:

    Happy 10 year anniversary, Maria! I’ve been following you from the beginning. You’ve helped me choose colors for the house I currently own as well as my previous home. I do remember a more personal post from years past that created a storm of comments. You know what? You may have alienated a few followers, but I’m sure it drew more people to you. I love watching your business evolve over the years. I am using your business as a model. I would love to hear more posts about how your business has evolved and what tools and strategies you found useful as you grew.

  • Kelly Danielsen says:

    Congratulations on a successful 10 years! I’ve been a long time reader of your blog. Would love to attend one of your workshops!! Your blog has been an incredible source of decorating advice to me over the years, and most recently I remodeled my bathroom, using white subway and white hex tiles. Kept it all classic and I receive compliments from everyone who sees it! The installers even praised my choices saying they loved working on my bathroom, putting a period appropriate bathroom into a 1920’s home, since they are usually ripping these finishes out and replacing with modern finishes. So thank you Maria for all of the great advice over the years!

  • Joni Theis says:

    Hi Maria! Happy for you to be the success you knew you could be! Being creative is your air! Would love to hear more on lighting and how it can change color. High spots, lamps, pendants! I’m trying to get it right… happy tenth!

  • Torri says:

    Congrats! I love your blog and also follow you on instagram. One of my dilemmas I have been having in our current house is the transition from our pine hardwood floors to the tile in our bathroom. Right now our bathroom is separated into 2 rooms. The vanity room and the toilet and shower room. The hardwood is throughout every single part of the house except tile in the shower areas. I like the flow of the wood into the vanity area from our bedroom but want to open up the bathroom and make it one room instead of 2. Im having trouble picking out the color of the tile because I really don’t want to take out the wood but I still want to the bathroom to flow. I know you always recommend white tile but I feel it will still give me a 2 room look with such a drastic color difference. Should I try and match the wood a little more, add white tiles in more of an artsy way, or just rip out the wood and tile the whole bathroom? Thanks for your advice.

  • Evaline says:

    Hi Maria, Congratulations on all your success and achievements! (I follow you on intagram.)
    I wanted to say that I especially appreciate the “happy” aspect of COLOUR ME HAPPY.” Colour makes me so happy…I have never been a grey person. Have your books and really enjoy your blog. We collect original art and our floors are pecan oak. I would appreciate hearing from you on choosing the frame material and colour when framing art.

  • Maria, I absolutely look forward to your emails telling me there has been a new blog posted! I would love to see something on creating an inviting basement – one that people would love to spend time in. What colours work best in spaces with very little natural light? What kind of lighting is best in basements?

  • Holly says:

    Hi Maria,
    I am a home owner who often seeks your advice via your blog for anything I do in my house, and figuring out how to put it all together. It’s not perfect, but you helped me ‘deal’ with my bossy (and very large) pink sandstone fireplace. I probably would have just ignored it without you. You know that would have been a huge mistake! Every post you write I learn from, and I will continue to do so with each new one. I find I mentally file away the subject, then search for it when I need it. Sometimes I manage to actually get them pinned!

  • Patricia Borgula says:

    Congratulations and Happy Blog-aversary, Maria! I’ve learned so much from reading your blog top to bottom. I love that you introduce us to your family. And you talk about juicing, saunas and Tony Robbins. I take the path less traveled too, and appreciate you sharing YOU. Would love to see more about fabric choices in the future. Again congrats for 10k at ten years!

  • Betty says:

    Congratulations, Maria! I find your journey very inspiring (I’d like to do the same and put my own thoughts & theories “out there”. Not colour-related, BTW.). I’m a long-time subscriber. I find your ability to pick the perfect neutral just astounding, and am so grateful you’ve shared your system with the world. Here’s a topic, and I don’t know whether you’d consider it at all: occasionally I see a great interior that mixes clean and dirty, and yet works just great. I know you’ve written about this before, but not very much (I recall just one post). Why do these sometimes work? Are there rules – albeit more complicated ones? And another topic (a bonus!): the role of contrast (in light and dark) in creating a great interior. Thank you for sharing your talents and ideas with all of us for the last 10 years.

    • Maria Killam says:

      It works because the styling is fabulous! Look again and you’ll see that I’m right. Like I say in my live colour workshops, if all else fails and you’ve made a mistake, start styling! It distracts from lots of colour mistakes! Hope that helps, Maria

  • Fran Kiker says:

    I, too, have followed you for several years. I enjoy your blog because you are real, enthusiast, knowledgeable, and creative. I have learned a lot about how to consider points of decorating.
    I congratulate you and wish you many more years of happy colors….ah, colours!
    Have you ever considered a directory of those who have trained in your workshops?
    Everything good for you and your family,

  • Mary says:

    Maria, I’m a homeowner who loves your blog so much and uses the information to make sense out of my home decorating decisions. Have you considered the topic choosing art ( pictures) based on color? Pictures can make a room and using color theory I’ll bet you have some great ideas for us about choosing art to make our rooms “sing”. Happy 10th Anniversary!

  • Michelle says:

    Congratulation Maria! I love to see great things happen to great people. Wishing you and Terreeia continued success! I’d like to see a post on when to paint room a color versus when it’s better to use a neutral.

  • Mary Stein says:

    Thank you, Maria for being an innovator in the field of color and adding some new dimensions in using color as a tool in design. I have been following you for at least nine years and appreciate you own unique viewpoints and comments!

  • Gail M says:

    I’m already following you on Instagram. LOVE your posts. LOVE your blogs.

    Just reading your blogs, and a couple of your eBooks has made me realize and learn so much about design. And, trust me, I’m NOT inclined to design! Just a simple homeowner trying to make it look like I know what I’m doing! LOL

    I devour your blogs on whites and blues cause they are my favs. Never get tired of blogs on white and blue. Oh wait, did I say that already? White, blue. White, blue.

  • Heather says:

    I am so grateful you have so many posts archived! I just bumped into your blog a month ago. I can’t recall how I found it, but I am so glad I did. I have been binge reading, sometimes thru the night. I can’t wait to see where the links at the bottom of your post will lead me next. There is still so much to discover. I have to tell you I think I have just as much to learn from Terreeia and Helen, as I do from you. ? I would love to meet all 3 of you.
    Do you have a post that includes a quiz, to see, if I can see what you see regarding color? I sometimes wonder if I can learn what you are teaching, to be a “color myself happy” diy or I if I just need a Color Me Happy budget. Any tips/posts on making timely decisions? I seem to want to keep looking for more options. When actually I should be taking action.
    Thank you.

    • Maria Killam says:

      This is a good question and something I talked about just yesterday in the 2nd day of my Specify Colour with Confidence event going on right now here in Dallas. The reason why a non design professional keeps looking is because you really DON’T KNOW all the possible options, what kinds of finishes are new or current that could actually save you a lot of money. For example, laminate countertops have come a long way, maybe you don’t need stone in your laundry room and you could install a new marble-look laminate and save some money, the list goes on and on. What if you have a modern aesthetic and your home is traditional and what you are about to install is just wrong. Like a linear fireplace in a traditional space? Only an experienced design professional can help you navigate those decisions and make you feel confident that you are moving in the right direction. So I recommend either our eDesign department or find a designer whose aesthetic you like! Thanks for your thoughtful comment! Maria

  • Kathlleen DeMill says:

    Congratulations! Your blog is extremely helpful. I would like to know how to find resources for furniture, and decor. We have fewer furniture stores, and not many for decor.

    And I would like to know if I should change my fireplace tile when I remodel my kitchen. Both are visible from the same room.

    Keep up the terrific blog- it makes me smile when i see it in my inbox!

    • Maria Killam says:

      Yes your kitchen and fireplace should look like they are married and about to run off together 🙂 Hope that helps, Maria

  • Congratulations! On my five year goals you are top 10 to attend your course! Just following your blog and reading your books has been invaluable for me! I can only imagine how great it would be if I actually attended the course!! Fingers (and toes!) crossed for good luck! I also follow you on instagram!

  • Nancy says:

    Hi Maria and congratulations on your milestones! You’ve helped me so much and I refer to your ebook still. I hope to purchase your color wheel if you will tell me how to do that. I can’t find it on your shopping page.
    Congrats again!

  • Jennifer says:

    Congratulations! I’d love to see a blog about making a builder grade home look more unique or interesting.

  • Brenda says:

    I have been following you for ages! Maybe not the full 10 years but pretty darn close! Congratulations on achieving 10 years and providing the masses with all your valuable knowledge and insight. It has gone a long way in my own home decorating and I will be forever grateful for you and your blog. It seems to me that you cover it all — in fact just in the last day or so, you talked about the space above kitchen cupboards and what to do about it. That had been a question I had for a while. When I finally paint my natural maple cabinets, I know know what to do first! I hate climbing up there to clean anyway, so why not fill it in!!! I have a pretty firm grasp on how to renovate my master bathroom (thanks to you), even though we are still waiting to see what you did with yours (no pressure!)… I love your posts on styling and how to personalize a space also. I also love the snippets of your personal life and I don’t mind that you are blunt and honest. I don’t really come away thinking that you have major issues — but nobody is perfect, we are all a work in progress. As long as you blog, I will continue to read. And some day, I will make it to one of your workshops! Thank you so much!!!

  • Donna says:

    Happy 10 years Maria! I’ve followed your blog most of that time and have been helped to avoid mistakes (as well as been educated and entertained!). It’s also helped me help my girls as they worked on their homes too. Here’s to the next 10 years!

  • Beth Lester says:

    Congratulations on your anniversary, Maria. You’ve made me look at everything differently, and it’s now hard to stay in hotels with horrible color combinations and to see people fawning over another designer’s work where there are multiple undertones going and it looks just terrible, ha. Thank you for continuing to put yourself out there!

    Lighting is a subject that I still struggle with and would be “happy” to see more of!

  • Hi Maria, I have learned so much from your blog and very much appreciate your advice! I always debate on a new build what color hardware such as door knobs and cabinet hardware. Which goes best with various paint colors? I am mainly choosing for a commercial type building (assisted living) and I really want the look to be as timeless as possible. Your large Essential Collection colour boards have been invaluable in choosing paint colors. I follow your instagram of course! I am not a decorator but enjoy learning about color and decor. I would love, love, love to take your course! I could use the help!
    Congrats on the success of your business~

  • Rieca says:

    Incredible this journey we have all been on together. I have enjoyed your insight into colour and design.
    Your quirks and personal stories keeps your blog friendly, I feel like you are talking with me energetically in a cafe over a cup of tea. You invite us in, and we love you for it.
    I have been with you 8 years. I had recently moved and was looking for inspiration on how to make my new home my own. I have bossy granite which I can’t afford to replace and on your advice I painted it white, and when I say white I mean cream?. I still love it 8 years later. I also installed a pale grey subway not because it was trendy but because it was in my granite and calmed the beast! Thank you!
    Topics I would love to see is how to use colour to distract and trick the eye. How to use colour to give scale to furniture. How to create scale when you simply can’t afford to rebuy everything.
    Rules for lighting. Are their any? Everyone is mixing metals and repeating it, I get that. But I love all metals and traditional to bohemian how does one know when to stop mixing?
    How to successfully create an accent colour.
    I loved your article with the gorgeous green handrail. And how you played back and forth throughout the house with green and blue to create flow. Some of us still need help with flow!
    Happy Anniversary, to you both your success is a joint venture!

  • Bonnie says:

    Congratulations on 10 years of inspiring others Maria. You share your 10-year blogging anniversary with another gold award-winner health blogger that I admire – Angela Lidden of I have learned so much from you both.

  • Pamela says:

    Best wishes for many more successful years! I am a newer reader and wish I would have found you sooner! I have learned so much already and been able to fix colors, elements in my home that I was unable to identify the problem with before, I just knew they felt “off”. I am not a designer, but I LOVE designing and changing up things in my home. I would like to see more before and after pics. These are especially helpful when you show how to work with existing ( sometimes dated) finishes to freshen and pull together things until a remodel or renovation is possible. I love all the posts though and look forward to each one! Thank You and Teerria for your had work and making the world a more beautiful place!

  • Helen says:

    Congratulations on your tenth year anniversary of blogging. I discovered you several years ago and I admire your candour. I have a friend is a lot more unfiltered than you and it makes me laugh.
    I love to work with colour in quilts and traditional rug hooking. However, when it comes to walls and furniture, I’m a little reticent. Analysis paralysis.
    Congratulations again and all the best to you and Terreeia.

  • Deborah Young says:

    Congratulations on ten years of teaching so many of us how to achieve better results with our color choices. I am a university professor by employment (in a field that has nothing to do with design), but paint color has long been a hobby for me. Thanks to you I now do a much better job choosing colors and I understand my mistakes in the past (like not realizing huge leafy green trees outside the window would make the paint inside appear green). I look forward to each post and joined Instagram so I could follow you there. Here’s to another decade of Colour Me Happy!

  • Beth says:

    Hi Maria, Congratulations – 10 years – wow! I;ve followed you all these years. I’ve learned a lot. I;m not a designer but just very interested in colours. I’ve always lived in an apt. so any future advice about colours in a small apt would be helpful. Thanks for all that you do. Beth

  • Lisa says:

    Congratulations Maria! I have been following your blog for a couple years now and have appreciated your help on interior and exterior color consultations. We just bought a new mountain home with light wood floors, black windows, and yep, all white walls just like in all of the magazines right now. Trying to add color but I fear I will be consulting you in 10 years asking how to “update” this look! I hope you come to Denver soon, and I love following you on Instagram as well.

  • Bibianna Maddox says:

    Wahoo! Time flies when your having fun!! I can’t personally thank you enough for your blog and course! As a homeowner, I have always felt “unqualified” to choose my own colors and decorate but always had the desire to do so! Your blog gave me the confidence I needed to help revamp 2 of the last homes we have lived in and approach it from the perspective of choosing finishes that will last and not have to ripped out time and time again- creating waste.
    I still feel unsure about decorating because I hate clutter and am more of a minimalist. (Comes from growing up with a hoarder parent). And I hate buying items that to me are just “junk” to fill a space. Could you speak more to decorating/ styling using minimal?
    Congratulations again! Keep blogging because I love your authenticity!

  • Christian P. says:

    Congratulations on 10 years, Maria. Your path to success is inspiring. Your visionary system and tools helped me make a heavy Tuscan-trend home we bought feel fresher and like our own. I’m so thankful for your guidance. One topic I’d love to see you cover is using the landscape/view from your windows as a starting point for color selections. I once read an interview with Barbara Streisand where she talked about coordinating her landscaping to the decor of her rooms. For those with a commanding view, windows function as a giant piece of art.

  • sharon says:

    Hi Maria,

    I have learned so much from your blog about clean and dirty colors. Not sure if I missed a blog on this topic but here goes…..there is a major difference in color choices in different parts of the country. For example, when we lived in Chicago I used dirtier colors and when we moved to CA….they didn’t work at all! The light is completely different here and we had to change everything because alll the furnishings looked too…..dirty!

    Thank you for your wisdom, Maria!

  • Brenda Hileman says:

    Hi Maria,
    You have been a lifesaver for our new build! I have purchased two of your webinars, and they now have me on the “boring” mindset. THANKS!!!

    I am a recent subscriber… rather than suggest what you might need to add….I am still reading to catch up on your helpful and needed design guidance.

    Blog post suggestion…how does the homeowner know when their decision making is complete? How do they give themselves the grace to accept their choices?

  • Debra Rigby says:

    Wow Maria – Congratulations!! I don’t remember how I found your blog but have followed it since you started Colour Me Happy!
    As a designer I thought of your blog as a mix of inspiration and education. I started by purchasing your e-books and applied
    your theory to 2 of my own homes with great success. The best thing I EVER did for my business was sign up for your
    colour course in Toronto. I really had my eyes opened and came away with such clarity. I couldn’t wait to receive
    your paint boards.
    Its been 3 years since then and no longer do I find my nerves getting the better of me when I head out on paint consults.
    My clients truly are amazed and enjoy the education that comes with comparing and understanding undertones!!!
    When I see posts from people asking where to obtain ‘colour’ help or whether your course is worth the
    time and money, I respond that its the best investment!!
    I have enjoyed watching you grow and still remain authetic!
    Cheers to another 10 years!


  • Jeannie says:


    I have learned more from you than any other decor blog. I love how you help readers improve their space working with what they have—not all of us can afford a complete rip out and redo. I read and reread your posts. I recently purchased your undertones ebook but haven’t had time to delve into it yet. I also appreciate your use of color. I’m so tired of seeing white or beige sofas. I love your yellow choice—vibrant like its owner. Mine will be green—reupholstered. I read your warning about recovering an old sofa—that it would still look dated. Do you have ideas on modifications? I’m going to eliminate the skirt, adding wooden legs. I hope that will be enough. But then I’m old and dated myself.

    In summary, I love what you do. Thank-you.

    • Maria Killam says:

      Haha, if your sofa is a classic style then by all means, get it recovered, but what a lot of people don’t realize is it often costs the same as buying a new sofa. Once you buy the fabric and pay for the labour, it’s the same price. So you should only recover your sofa if you really love the style, or if it was really expensive to begin with, meaning that the quality is really good. Hope that helps, Maria

  • Sandra-Kay Daniels says:

    Thank you for the education about color and design you have so beautifully shared on your blog. My suggestion as a topic relates to updating color without changing the entire color scheme. I think the issue is that I want to make a slight move toward cleaner and I know that, using your definitions, that mixing dirty and clean colors is extremely dicey. My situation is that the living area is presently painted a neutral to dirty yellow (about a 3 on the value scale). My furniture and accessories relate in shades of mustard, rusty rose, mossy to grassy green, dirty turquoise with medium to dark woods. It all looks good now, but I need to repaint and would like to update a bit. It is possible to go lighter and cleaner with the yellow (or another color) without making all the furniture and accessories look unrelated? Of course, I want to achieve an updated look. (P.S. My floors are natural oak and I have several oriental rugs that have to stay.)

  • Kristi Steed says:

    Congrats on 10 years of posts! I have learned SO much from you over the past few years….both online and in your class. Could you do a post on shutters? i.e. choosing the best shutter style for a home, wood vs. vinyl, when it’s a better look to remove them completely.

    I also follow you on Instagram and would love to win the large paint samples. 🙂

  • Pam says:

    I began following your blog 3-4 years ago and have read and re-read your e-books and every post multiple times! I was so glad I purchased them before we began building our new home three years ago. I knew I wanted classic and timeless fixed features but did not know how to explain it to my husband who was so set on choosing a granite that was so busy it gave me nightmares! He thought black was so boring. Thankfully I could show him example after example of how I wanted my kitchen to look and feel from pictures on your blog. It also helped me convince him to let me paint the knotty alder kitchen and railing in my previous home which made it feel so fresh and bright! I would love to attend a color training workshop!
    PS also follow on Instagram PSS We compromised by using a black granite which looks absolutely gorgeous and we both love it!