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How to Choose Colour for the Master Bedroom

By 07/04/2010February 10th, 201747 Comments

I’m painting this weekend. I have now made enough decisions on decor that I can choose the colour and paint—yaay! This means the current pinky beige will be gone!

First, the loveseat and chair I bought from Martha Stewart Furniture has arrived and it is pretty darn cute (below):

I haven’t picked out an end table or coffee table yet so I grabbed this cafe table I was going to sell on Craigslist (from the last house) and found a white tablecloth to cover it up.

Photos by Maria Killam

Are skirted tables out? I’m thinking I can keep it there with a different tablecloth, maybe. The crewel pillows came with it which I’m not crazy about but they are okay for now.

The existing colour is a much lighter version of BM CC-60 Brandy Cream. I can’t wait to paint it!

The lamp I found the other day, I don’t think I’m going to keep because it takes up too much space on the table, I want to have more room for flowers and branches like the ones I picked from outside the other day.

The coffee table books I received as a gift from one of my favourite clients! I love books in vignettes, they can act as a pedestal for almost anything.

Once I bought the same faux shell (it’s made out of some kind of plastic) for a client. She liked everything we purchased on our shopping trip together that day but she returned the shell, she thought it looked like a messy roll of toilet paper—clearly she did not see the beauty in it that I did 🙂

A bedroom colour is much easier to choose than main areas of the house. Many times all you need is the bedding to decide. Because this bedroom is bigger than usual and I have this little sitting area, I could paint the room the muted turquoise of the love seat/chair.

The other place to look for the colour is the drapery (mine will be white linen) and the upholstered Martha Stewart bed which is on order, but here’s the linen it will be in (above).

Martha Stewart for Bernhardt

I chose OC-15 Baby Fawn which (it turns out) is the same as HC-173 Edgecomb Gray. The reason I’m doing a warm gray instead of the muted turquoise of my furniture is because I already have a clean tiffany blue colour in my office upstairs. That would not flow well from one room to another so the room will be a pale gray to coordinate with the bed.

Yesterday, I painted the fireplace brick (currently it’s the same colour as the walls). I’m getting white drapes and the ceiling is white so I matched the colour to the ceiling which was OC-65 Chantilly Lace. No need to comment on the peach tile and the brass fireplace insert—one step at a time. 🙂

After I got the first coat up, I noticed it looked WAY whiter than the ceiling (even though they are the same colour) you may not be able to see the difference from the photo. So I’m going to take the quart of paint and get it tinted slightly creamier for the second coat.

Here’s another picture of them both. I know texture makes a colour appear darker but the bricks have lots of texture too, so I’m going to see if they look any different when the new colour goes up, which will be after I finish writing this post! Most likely it won’t but the way colour changes in the light endlessly fascinates me, and every time I think I’ve got it nailed, it surprises me. It’s certainly never boring which is why I love it so much!

Happy 4th of July to all my American readers!

ps. I’m thinking of going to Seattle this weekend? Anyone need a consultation? Email me at [email protected]

If you would like your home to fill you with happiness every time you walk in, contact us! We would love to help you choose colours, select the right combination of hard finishes or create a plan to pull your room together. You can find our fabulous e-design consultation packages here.

Related posts:

Decorating the Master Bedroom

How to Create an Ethereal Colour Scheme

Have you made these Decorating Mistakes?

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  • Erin @ The Impatient Gardener says:

    This is what I love about you, Maria … you're the same as all the rest of us! You can't wait to get rid of a color that's driving you nuts and you ponder over what color will be best. You even occasionally have unexpected things happen … like the fireplace looking too stark. It gives me hope and reassurance that even color experts go through these little challenges.

  • Cindy Sue says:

    Looking Good! If you're going to change out the lamp, how about an art deco style table to go in the corner? And play it up with a crystal lamp? Adore the Martha Stewart finds! Can't wait to see it all done!

  • pve design says:

    Love your little "boudoir" sitting room area – in your bedroom! It has a "parlor" feel. I would love to see that table painted or a lovely shantung table cloth and another lamp – perhaps a candlestick lamp – which will give you the added space you need.
    Have you tried the new Benjamin Moore Affinity colors, they are amazing. I love the matte and the richness of the palette.
    For your hearth, you may surprise yourself and find a lovely screen, in wrought iron. Look forward to seeing your room evolve!

  • Jen @ Bloggers Abode says:

    So pretty! Super jealous that you have a fireplace in the bedroom!

  • Moxie Maley says:

    It's looking great! I love the Martha Stewart pieces, and I think skirted tables are great! Keep us posted 🙂

  • Grace @ Sense and Simplicity says:

    I'm loving the progress shots. Your sofa and chair are gorgeous. I'm looking forward to seeing the progression, and especially how you make decisions and correct mistakes (like the paint colours in your bedroom). Good lessons.

  • The Martha Stewart pieces are lovely! Also jealous of the fireplace in your bedroom. Can't wait to see what all you do!

  • Tamara Nicole says:

    Love those pillows! Can't wait to see how it turns out:-) i just did a post on my office/craft room decor ideas, don't you just love home projects?!

  • Susan says:

    I wish I had a bedroom like yours. Oh my… you get a fireplace, a sofa, a chair and that lovely upholstered bed. The room must be insanely big. I love love love the sofa and chair (pretty colour) and your bed selection. I know it's going to be Fab when you're done.

    I personally love the shell. I can't imagine someone not liking it. But then I'm a little biased towards shells of all kinds.

    We need to teach electricians that the middle of walls do not make an ideal place for a thermostat. When will they ever learn!!! 🙂


  • Beth says:

    I agree – the lamp should go… to my house, please. It's fun following you through your personal color journey. Thank you.

  • Marcus Design says:

    I love the brick around your fireplace in white, it looks fresh and modern. I also love the tufted set you got for the sitting area, they are so pretty! This room looks like it is shaping up to be a lovely retreat already.

  • Ava says:

    I have the exact bed in the exact fabric you chose. Just knowing you also have it makes me feel as if I have great taste and know what I'm doing 🙂

    I had a color consultation a couple weeks ago and the designer selected a warm gray (Porter Paint 530-4 Gray Marble) for my bedroom (color picked from the fireplace tile in the bedroom). She also chose a more richer gray 2 shades down on the same card as an accent behind the bed. I have white bedding and white linen drapes so I just hope it doesn't feel too cold.

    I'm anxious to see the results of your MBR. Such a great start so far.

  • Maria Killam says:

    HI Susan,
    I so agree about that thermostat! Hello? What the heck is it doing in the middle of the wall?
    Thanks for your comment!

  • Anonymous says:

    Love what you have done in the bedroom! Can't wait to see if the paisley linens look good with the blue furniture. 🙂

  • Maria Killam says:

    Hi Ava,
    I love that you have the same bed as me, how cool is that!!

    And Anonymous, the paisley bedding was picked out with the furniture in mind, it works but now I'm thinking I want more colour than blue and green–not that I need to be married to the duvet (where have I heard this before–from many, many cients 🙂

  • Trell says:

    Maria, love your posts, as usual, but I personally don't think the skirted tables are out. I love the classic look that the room is starting to form. I'm confident it's going to look amazing! I can't wait to see the bed!

  • Vanessa@decor happy says:

    I had no idea that HC-173 and OC-15are the same colour. They are two of my favourites and spec both of them often.

    Love your furniture choices and look forward to seeing the room when finished.

  • DesignTies says:

    Loving your choices so far, Maria! Looking forward to seeing the final reveal 😉
    Victoria @ DesignTies

  • Minus75 says:

    I really like the lamp, it's so different.

    It looks great already. I can't wait to see the finished room.

  • chanteusevca says:

    What fun it is to watch you design and paint your own home. I agree with Erin above. It's wonderful to see you going through the process you have guided so many of your readers and clients through. Love the room and love your choices. Looking forward to viewing the transformation. I know it will be beautiful.

    Victoria in Texas, continuing our transformations too

  • Kate Smith says:

    Lovely sitting area. The color and style is so what I think of as you. And how nice to have a fireplace in the bedroom even if the look isn't perfect (yet anyway). It looks like a very inviting bedroom in the making. Look forward to seeing more. xo~Kate

    PS-How annoying to have the thermostat smack in the center of the wall.

  • Kim@Chattafabulous says:

    Maria, I love all of your selections so far and can't wait to see more!

  • Houses Gardens People says:

    I wonder if there is a solution for the pink tile around the fireplace that your landlord might go for. There are companies that refurbish tile in bathrooms with spray-on enamel (look for companies that refurbish old bathtubs and sinks). I've seen it done and it looks like new tile. I don't see why it wouldn't work on the tile in your bedroom. Tell your landlord if he doesn't like it, you'll have it painted back the pinkish color when you move. I bet he goes for the idea, and then loves the new color so much he'll opt to keep it!

    Also, I love the tufted sofa and chair, and love the color of blue!

  • Michelle says:

    Coincidentally, I am getting ready to paint all my living areas Edgecomb Gray. I think of it though as a light beige with gray undertones – not a light gray with warm undertones. I hope it does not actually look gray on my walls. Any thoughts on that?

  • Melissa Rakowski says:

    Maria, What a coincedence! I am redoing my son's room and chose Edgecomb Gray. The room consists of bright blues and acid greens along with wenge furniture. I chose the Edgecomb gray to calm the overall brightness down. I will probably use 80% of formula which I tend to do on most jobs just to soften the color. I will post photos when I am done!! Good luck with you decorating and happy painting!


  • Mona Thompson says:

    Love your furniture and all of your plans. It will be fun to watch your new home progress.

  • Maria Killam says:

    Hi Vanessa,
    It's funny I decided on Baby Fawn and when I got to the paint store I pulled out Edgecomb gray and thought they so close I asked them what the difference was–nothing- they are the same colour!

    Hi Michelle,
    Edgecomb gray is similar to Revere Pewter. I would call it a greeny gray over a beige but it's the kind of colour that sometimes looks beige, sometimes green, sometimes just like a neutral gray, sometimes like linen. . . I think it's good 🙂

  • Between you, me and the Fencepost says:

    Who notices thermostats in the middle of the wall? (I'm sure there is a funny punchline but I can't think of one now) You decorator types' attention to detail amazes me. Your pictures don't do justice to the beautiful colour of your coach and chair. Can't wait to come over and see the finished product!

  • Steph@TheGraniteGurus says:

    I'm in love with your new Martha Stewart furniture! The color is great.
    I like the fireplace painted white too. The room is beautiful.

  • suzanne says:

    Hi: Love the new sofa and chair – consider a bigger skirted round table – I think the scale in relation to the other pieces would be better – Ballard anyone?

    Suzanne on St. Simons

  • Annie Wilcox Designs says:

    What a wonderful story to follow. i will mark these colors in my swatch decks as strong choices for rooms. Thanks for all that you are sharing with your own personal work. I appreciate it.

  • Anonymous says:

    Wouldn't the room look so pretty if the ceiling were painted a soft turquoise …?

  • Maria Killam says:

    Hi Anonymous,
    Mmmm. . . love that idea, but I may get to that last, so much other stuff to decorate!
    Great suggestion!

  • cljohnson says:

    this color of gray you've chosen is "warm" so would it get along with a "yellow beige" in adjoining rooms? I ask because our relatively new house's main rooms are in Sand (a yellow beige) and I'd like to change out the master bedroom to a soft, pale gray which would complement the master bath's tile and also our master bedroom's curtain panels. We have turquoises and greens in this bedroom and just a touch of yellow in decor items. I wish I had your eye! Love your choices in this bedroom.

  • cljohnson says:

    this color of gray you've chosen is "warm" so would it get along with a "yellow beige" in adjoining rooms? I ask because our relatively new house's main rooms are in Sand (a yellow beige) and I'd like to change out the master bedroom to a soft, pale gray which would complement the master bath's tile and also our master bedroom's curtain panels. We have turquoises and greens in this bedroom and just a touch of yellow in decor items. I wish I had your eye! Love your choices in this bedroom.

  • Ashlee says:

    Baby Fawn (OC-15) is my favorite color! I've painted every place I've had that color. Currently my bedroom is BF. It's the perfect khaki/beige, not too gray, not too pink! Love it! Looks great.

  • Anonymous says:

    like your choices, Maria! wondering if your choice of gray as a warm gray would be good pals with a yellowy beige? I'm going to switch out my "builder beige," as I call it, to a pale gray for our master bedroom and master bath (which would echo the gray in curtain panels) and also complement the turquoise and greens in bed decor. Gray, like beige, can be green, blue, cool and warm — challenging, in short! Cannot afford to make changes in the rest of the house at this time but "have to" change this bedroom!

  • Michelle says:

    Maria, I am considering painting my main living areas Edgecomb gray. I have dark cherry cabinetry with red undertones in the living and kitchen areas. Would that work? I am thinking the gray beige of Edgecomb gray would work well with the reddish brown of the cherry cabinetry. It seems that a yellow beige would not work, and a pinky beige would be too much red in the room. What do you think?

  • Kathysue says:

    Maria, I love, love your M. Stewart settee,chair and bed, Great choices. What a wonderful foundation you are creating, Love it!! I think the soft, soft blue ceiling would be a winner in the bedroom. I did that in my guest room and I love love it, so peaceful to look up at, very calming. Have fun!! Kathysue

  • Donna says:

    Dear Maria, I love your photos of decorating your bedroom. They really help us understand better how to decorate our own.

    Thank you so much for the consultation–You have transformed my home and I have even started painting yet! I wrote a nice long comment yesterday and it got deleted somehow by me pushing a wrong button and then I didn't have time to fix it.

    I am working on a super special post today–all about the color consultation you did for me. I've taken some good photos of before and after. All I did was pull down some border, buy a new bedspread and curtains and re-arrange all the decor and paintings to match the colors that we chose for each room.

    I'll be painting some next week. But for now, the house already looks so much better. Hubby is impressed!

    Thanks again, so much. Your advice is worth every penny!

    Donna @ Comin' Home

    PS. Can't wait to see the rest of your decorating–as it happens. :o)

  • Maria Killam says:

    Hi Michelle,
    A yellow beige would work great with cherry furniture as will the Edgecomb gray. If your upholstery has yellow beige undertones though then I would consider going in that direction.

  • Michelle says:

    Hi Maria, Thanks! One question though – you mentioned in your piece on beige undertones that red undertones (as in my cherry cabinetry) would make a yellow undertone wall look "dirty". That's why I was staying away from yellow beige on the wall. Do I have that confused somehow?

    Also, not that it really matters, but I went online and noticed that Baby fawn has a different light reflective value than Edgecomb gray, so they must be slightly different formulas.

  • Christina - The Diva's Home says:

    Love the furniture and the colors! Skirted tables are classic Traditional style and so don't really ever go out of style. Plus the skirts are a great way to cover up furniture you aren't really fond of until you can change it. Thanks for sharing your decorating adventure with us!

  • Maria Killam says:

    Hi Michelle,
    In my piece on beige I meant everything but wood (but it's a good question). Cherry floors or cabinetry will not make a yellow beige look dirty at all.

    Re: Edgecomb gray, I just asked the guys in the paint store what the difference was and they told me they were the same, I didn't see the formulas myself.

  • Betty says:

    Happy 4th of July???? Nice, but it’s only JUNE now. LOL! You ARE tired! Love ya! XOXO

  • Maria Killam says:

    Hi Betty,
    This is an old post from 2010. Maria

  • Hi! I’ve been following your website for a while now and finally got the bravery to go ahead and give you a shout out from Huffman Texas! Just wanted to mention keep up the excellent job!

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