Whenever I talk about grey flooring on social media, I always hear from followers that had a bad experience with choosing grey. However, in this particular story a design professional was involved, and they blamed the bad store lighting for the error. But here’s what really went wrong and how it could be saved in the end.
Can bad store lighting lead to bad colour choices?
I recently received this note and photos from one of my Instagram followers. And I was dismayed to read that not only did her designer choose a very bad colour for her flooring, I also learned that it’s tile! Eeeeek. Even harder to remove and replace than a material like LVP (luxury vinyl plank).
🛑 Before you scroll down, can you identify the undertones here?
When I saw this, I had to ask how her designer replied when she declared that she hated it:
What are the undertones of grey?
Keep in mind, wood look flooring photographs badly. But the undertones in this kitchen are definitely wrong. The floor reads violet grey, and may have some taupe undertones too. And yikes, the pattern is way too busy.
In this example, the homeowner is absolutely right. The floor does not in any way coordinate with the blue grey cabinet colour.
I suspect her designer walked into the flooring store, saw “grey” and assumed grey was grey. But we know it’s not that simple right?
There are three undertones of grey:
- green grey
- blue grey
- violet grey
Get your neutral colour wheel (with real paint) here
What is the least expensive fix for this kitchen?
The least expensive fix here would be to repaint the cabinets and trim a violet grey. The right violet grey can be found in either of my ebooks with my Bonus book of colours here. There are only 5 to choose from, which makes this fix a lot less complicated than it looks.
How to avoid this kitchen mistake
This disaster could easily have been avoided if the designer had chosen a cabinet paint colour to coordinate with the flooring. She could have compared paint chips to the flooring options right in the store.
Everyone is quick to blame the light when their colour choices don’t work out. But most of the time the problem is that the most important step in choosing colour was skipped: DIRECT COMPARISON.
BTW, I have several hands-on exercises that help train your eye through direct comparison in my Specify Colour with Confidence two-day workshop.
Oh, and another thing that would have helped is being keenly aware of the undertones of neutrals and how to work with them properly. When you have a system like mine, bad store lighting won’t lead to bad colour choices.
But really, had she chosen a timeless brown or blonde wood look tile flooring instead, the blue grey cabinets (or ANY cabinet colour for that matter) would have looked great in this kitchen. Remember, EVERY design decision is also a colour decision.
What happens when the design professional gets it wrong?
It’s upsetting that this happens to people earnestly seeking out professional design help. Sound colour choices are fundamental and exactly what you’re paying for.
This got me to thinking… Have you ever had a designer help you choose finishes and the result was bad? What did the designer say when it was all finished and there was nothing that could be done? I would love to know in the comments below!
I recently drove by this violet grey exterior. It looks similar to the flooring above doesn’t it?
Whether you are a homeowner trying to update your home or a design professional working with clients, being able to choose timeless finishes in the right colour is paramount to creating a beautiful result. You be able to do with this with CONFIDENCE when you become a True Colour Expert this Spring.
Specify Colour with Confidence is a real-time workshop via Zoom for homeowners, design professionals, and colour enthusiasts who want to learn a solid process for making colour and decorating decisions from start to finish – that can be applied to ANY project.
Not only will you learn how to make the right choices for your home – but also the confidence that comes with understanding what’s missing or what’s wrong and how to make it better.
ICYMI: Vadara Quartz Guest Speaker
I was happy to see there are still lots of colourful homes in San Francisco, this one was so pretty in yellow:
I brought my sister Elizabeth along to be my photographer 🙂
Renovation update: My primary bathroom is almost finished! I’ll be sharing here with you soon, my lovelies!