Photos by Maria Killam
The first time this couple hired me to help them with their house (around 4-5 years ago), it was to choose a colour for the kitchen cabinets. Their house had been completely re-done (a lot of it without their approval) while they were out of town and their designer back then had chosen a colour that looked a lot like battleship gray (HC-101 below). She said it looked far worse in person than in this photo.
The only colour (after they tried a total of six) that did not fight with the many finishes, including the Birdseye maple, mahogany and the pink, black and green granite (above) was black in the end, so there were many black walls in this house, in addition to the greeny gray colour which remained in the kitchen which was BM 2137-40.
This was the white kitchen, and in this house it stuck out like a big white elephant because all the colours were so dark and dramatic. The colour I chose to coordinate with the existing wall colour was 2141-50. If you pull out your fandeck and look at these colours, you’ll notice I didn’t just go down a couple shades from 2137-40 because the colour needed to be warmer. The lighter shade of the one you have isn’t always the best way to go.
This summer, they had some real estate agents and stagers through the house. It was established that something needed to be done with the colour but the stagers thought more black was in order and that was when my client called me. She was convinced that the house needed to drop all the heavy black and she was absolutely right!
The big discussion during our consultation was which colour once again would not fight with all the different colours already in the room. I decided a light green gray was the way to go. We chose 3 different shades to try [BM 2143-50 Old Prarie, OC-47, Ashwood and OC-15 Baby Fawn] and and I recommended that they paint the entire wall to the right of the fireplace. The colour was going to be such an extreme departure from the black that it would be impossible to test it any other way. Here is the one we ended up with [OC-15] below:
I know with this much light it almost looks like white in the photos but if you look at the ceiling you can see the difference. The colour also nicely relates to the inlaid stainless in the fireplace wall.
This is the view from the living room (well every room actually), it’s up in the British Properties.
What a difference the addition of the light shag rug, moving art around and the new light colour has made!
My client said she had been reading my “How to Create a Tablescape” post, which is why the vignette on the end table looked so great, I didn’t have to move a thing for the photo!
She also said the Mahogany just screamed with the black and that now it’s gone to sleep with the new light gray and I agree!
My clients were having a dinner party so she staged the kitchen for me because she knew I’d be taking photos when I came over. Love the apple green vases!
The dining chairs were custom made years ago (if you look closely you can see the fabric has bottles of wine on it. As this room is the first thing you see (besides the view of course) when you walk into the house, and because it’s such a big focal point I suggested we update the chairs with a look that was softer and more current. Here is what they are now.
She also turned a room formerly used as a dressing room into a guest room. I like the way she mixed the fresh yellow green with the existing greeny gray shade on the walls.
Just like a light colour will never come to life in a dark room, a house with this much light needed a pale colour! My client said she only wished they had done this sooner! Hope you enjoyed the tour.
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