The Perils of Decorating with Black + a Colour Board Giveaway

I’ve been talking about how to decorate with black for years on this blog, but now this trend is full steam ahead. So, I thought it might be time to share a round up of my best tips for decorating with black (in case you missed them). 

And, since today happens to be Halloween – a post about black seems pretty fitting, don’t you think? And it’s also my 12th blogiversary. Can you believe it?

Who has been with me for 12 years? I’d love to hear in the comments!

To celebrate, I’m giving away a set of my large painted colour samples (you’ll get to choose which set)!

Simply comment on this post to enter.

Blog Anniversary Giveaway Contest

How to Decorate with Black

Black is powerful, chic and glamorous when it’s done right. But the overuse of black quickly becomes boring, masculine, harsh, flat and predictable.

And while everyone is now embracing this trend as the NEW NEUTRAL, this is a reminder to tread lightly. 

Those of us stuck with grey everything (and all that grey flooring) haven’t forgotten the last trendy neutral that invaded our homes with vigor and left some of us with finishes we no longer love.

Introduce black with intention, and it will look timeless. Keep saying ‘black’ whenever you are asked for a colour decision, and your bathroom will definitely fit into the current trend. 

[click on the photo or the green headline to visit the post]

What Everyone Should Know About Black

If you’re thinking of indulging in the black trend inside your home, this post is your START HERE

Modern Glam Black Walls

Via Domino

Black can be sophisticated and moody, or it can be altogether boring and bland. Similar to the way white can look unfinished and stark in a room that is not decorated and styled, black gets heavy and masculine really fast if it isn’t well thought out.

In this post, I’ll take you through what you need to know about decorating with black – when it works and when it doesn’t.

Black as an Accent Colour

There’s really only one way to decorate with black in your home – and that’s to use it as an accent colour. This post is from many moons ago, but the advice is solid and the post has been shared thousands of times! 😉

Ask Maria: Should I Buy a Black Sofa?

Here’s what’s I find interesting about this post, I wrote it in November 2019 BEFORE cognac became the trendy, neutral sofa-of-the-moment. And in this case, that is fine with me. A cognac sofa is truly one of the leather sofas I think is a timeless colour.

Your sofa is arguably the largest piece of furniture in the room. That’s why I’ve always said that buying a sofa in your favourite colour is the most timeless choice. 

Via AZOA.fr

But, if you’re shopping for a new sofa and tempted to choose black, there are a few things you need to consider first. Read this post to find out why a black sofa is a big commitment and an especially challenging design element to decorate around. 

And if your heart is already set on the black sofa, I’ve got some tips for introducing a little colour that’ll help guide you to the most classic and timeless look without being too stark and heavy.

Ask Maria: What Colours Work Best with Black Furniture?

In this post, we’ll explore a real living room from one of my readers who is trying to make her home look its best with her existing black furniture. 

colours that go with black sofa

Sofa | Blue Pillow | Camel Spotted Pillow | Lumbar Pillow | Area Rug | Cognac Chair

A well-decorated room needs a bit of contrast and warmth so I’ve got tips for introducing colour by choosing the right curtains, throw pillows and area rugs to go with dark furniture. This post is will give you a glimpse into how my eDesign consultations work with more ideas for decorating with black.

How to Decorate with Black in a Bathroom (Don’t Overdo It)

If you want to decorate with black, the key is not to overdo it. Black is the darkest colour in the spectrum and it’s much easier to pull off in small doses.

My Havenlist

This means that a little black goes a long way. So before you go out and purchase all black hardware and faucets or a black shower door, check out this post. It’s a great example of how to decorate with black in a timeless way.

What IKEA Knows About Black Kitchens (That You Don’t)

After attending a kitchen and bath show in 2018, I noticed that black was quickly becoming the new grey. Fast forward to 2020, and black and white kitchens are everywhere. In fact, this is one of my most popular posts on Pinterest.

Domaine Home

In order to achieve black and white kitchen that is also classic and timeless, I’m dissecting a few IKEA showroom kitchens. Because it’s these well-planned and executed details that are critical to getting the look and feel of a black and white kitchen right. Designer kitchens aren’t easily copied, but I can help you avoid some of the perils of black kitchens.

Do’s and Don’ts for Painting Your Doors Black

I get asked a lot about my opinion on painting doors black so I decided to share my thoughts on when it’s a good idea (or a bad idea) to introduce a black door in your house. Because, once again, the right contrast is important to getting the look right.

black interior door

Via Scout and Nimble

It’s not often that I say, “It’s only paint” – maybe never? But, in this post I’m suggesting that this might be the easiest way for you to entertain a little drama with colour – not just black. I mean, it’s only a door and that’s a smaller commitment than an entire room, right? 

Are Black Shower Doors the Best Choice for Your New Bathroom?

If you make every hardware choice black, your bathroom will say “We renovated in the black and white trend”. 

Railica Design

How to Decorate with Black Tile

You’ve found the most amazing bathroom on Pinterest with black tile but you’re not quite ready to commit? Obviously you don’t want to overdo it with black (because you’ve already read this post) but also you may not be completely renovation your space – so there’s a risk of mixing old and new. 

decorate black tile bathroom

Via @Carpendaughter

This post is filled to the brim with my best tips for how to make easier design decisions if you want to incorporate black tile as well as alternative design ideas for achieving a similar look.

Happy Halloween!

Post a comment below and let us know which set of boards you’d like to win! I’ll draw the winner and announce it in my next post which will go out Monday morning!

Related posts:

All Grey Home in 2011 and All Black in 2019

Why Your Teenager Wants a Black Room

Are Black Windows the Best Choice for your New Build?

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  1. Hi Maria,
    This is one of the best posts when it comes to decorating with black! And your words ring so true… when done right, black is powerful, chic and glamorous. Bravo!
    Best, Maria

    • Thanks for all your help, Maria! I’d love the neutrals, colors and darks! Not really a black fan but I love navy.

      • I painted my pantry door in my last house black and loved it! I really enjoy your blog and have learned so much from you! Thanks!

        • Congratulations on your 12th blogiversary, Maria! In my opinion, your longevity online is due to your inspiring professional posts like this one, your great sense of humor, and your honest open style. I wish you and your family much continued success in all you do!

          Black- I love using it in just about every room. I think it’s elegant and timeless especially when used in a bathroom or kitchen or as accents in other rooms.

          Thank you for offering this fun giveaway! It is hard to choose, but I would love to receive the BM VIP Neutrals, Colours and Darks collection

          Enjoy the rest of your weekend, Maria!

        • Congratulations on 12 years of successful blogging! I’ve been reading your posts for about 8 years and have very much enjoyed them. I will look forward to many years of posts to come. I would love to win the BM VIP collection of boards.

      • Happy Blogaversary! I learn so much from your posts and this one doesn’t disappoint. I love wearing black, but not living surrounded by black! Would love an entry for the Full Collection or SW Collection.

      • Good advice Maria!
        A little black goes a long way, for sure.
        One of my favorites is to paint the insides of a window frame( around the glass itself) black when the view is particularly good. It acts like a black matte around a photo and enhances the view.
        Another is a little black line or narrow stripe just above the base board when there’s a bit of black in the flooring.
        I remember coloring the outer lines of my coloring book pictures and then filling in with color. It just made everything pop. Like lipliner makes any color look good on you!😘

    • Dear Maria:

      I have been following you for about seven years and had the pleasure of attending a color class 4 years ago right when the election here in the states was going on. Your class made the results somewhat tolerable ( something wonderful to think about).. Your class and blogs are always the best advice. I am grateful for you in a world of all kinds of design but not necessarily timeless.

      Thank you and congrats on 12 years!

      Connie

    • Thank you for such a timely post! I’m working an entire main floor space around a black sectional that my clients insist on keeping. It’s been somewhat of a challenge so many of your ideas are very helpful. Moua!

      • Maria, you have saved me from a number of mistakes in paint and furniture choices. For years I would look at paint and fabrics and knew something was wrong but couldn’t put my finger on it. Then came you! Your ebooks and blogs have opened my eyes and given me confidence to make choices. The color wheel is a necessary item for every shopping trip. Thank you!

    • Hi. Maria. Congrats on 12 years! Your blog, IG posts and ebooks have helped me make choices with my home, and fixing up our childhood home to sell (under contract in 10 days!). Yep! Black is an accent…my parents built our home in 1976 with a black bathroom and a yellow one. What’s old is new again!

      • Maria,
        You’re blog (and life) are so interesting and you are so funny! You’ve definitely taught me a lot just from being your avid reader. I have and use your Neutrals colorboards frequently.
        Thanks for being an inspiration to so many.
        I’d love to have my name drawn for the BM VIP collection.

      • Hi Maria!

        I’m a new subscriber of your blog and everything is so fascinating and helpful! I’d love to win the neutrals, colours and dark colour board as I have a home in preconstruction and the colourboard would help greatly in the interior decorating of my first home!

      • Maria, I’ve been a follower since the beginning! I love, love, love the way you punctuate your thoughts with a descriptive picture. Thanks for sharing so much over the years. I don’t have the Sherwin Williams boards yet. That paint brand is very popular here.

    • Congratulations on 12 years! I’ve learned so much from your blog and ebooks! Thank you for sharing. I would love the BM VIP collection!

      • I’ve been following your blog since 2011. My daughter put me on to you when I was agonizing about whether I should paint my Oak cabinets. As soon as I read your post I was convinced it was the right way to go. I hired you to help me choose finishes for my kitchen and it turned out great. I haven’t missed too many of your blogs since then.
        I would love to win the Neutal, Colours and Dark boards. Thank, Maria, for all your help. Happy Blogiversary.

    • I use a lot of black—the Parade Home I did in 2018 had black cabs—I LOVED them and so did many others. They look great with natural wood. I also love the black fixtures youve shown, but it’s so important to have a water softener, otherwise they get gross so quickly!

      Love the post! Thanks.

  2. LOVE your blog and wish I’d known about you twelve years ago! Going through your older posts is my favorite way to start my day.

  3. I blundered into your class without reading the blogs first. I did everything backwards, but still am enjoying the ride. Congrats.

  4. Hi Maria! I can’t believe you are having this giveaway, because just last week I ponied up for your Sherwin Williams boards!! I hope I win a set of boards anyway….

  5. I came across your blog while searching something about paint colors and have been a faithful reader ever since. I have learned so much about color from reading all your posts.I recently bought a bathroom cabinet in what I thought was white, ignoring your voice in my head, I purchased without comparing. Well as you say white is not white and the color was so wrong. Being unable to return it I ended up having to paint a brand new cabinet because I did not follow your advice. Lesson learned. Do not ignore Maria’s voice in your head.Keep the informative posts coming.

  6. Hi Maria,

    I LOVE color – all color but I especially love WHITES AND NEUTRALS. I am somewhat of an artist and see these palettes as being the canvases for a home. I, however, am totally intrigued by your presentation of the infamous BLACK. I seem to think it is the perfect color to wear – 🙂 I have been reading your various posts for a long time and your website is well done. I am 77 years old – still working – I hope that’s a forever thing. Thank you for your continuing knowledge.

  7. Maria
    Thales you
    On Instagram I’m seeing black on black
    I’m also feeling black over load
    Thank you great information

  8. Every time I see a new build with black window casings (which is often) I think of you. Thanks for compiling all these tips and happy blog anniversary!

  9. Congratulations on 12 years! I’m relatively new to your site but it’s a goldmine! Your e-books are a wonderful resource. Thank you for sharing all your talents!

  10. I have been reading your blog since 2013 and I have a timeless white backsplash because of you! I love your e books too! Congratulations on your Anniversary Maria!!

  11. Awesome post, Maria. I often think about using black like black pepper, just sprinkle in a little to have more of a grounding effect. When you use more than that, it starts to look trendy and too heavy. I would love to win the boards set of Neutrals and Whites by Sherwin Williams. That would be fantastic and super helpful for my business!

  12. Thank you for clearly calling out the trends! Yesterday I was able steer a client away from grey flooring to white oak by pointing out how large the trend is/was. She will be so much happier with her choice in a few years! I use my SW Foundation Collection all the time. I would love the BM Core collection because Benjamin Moore is being used more and more here in Texas.

  13. I WISH I had found you 12 years ago! Congratulations! I have followed your advice the past few years by reading and re-reading post after post. Every project we’ve finished still looks great, timeless yet fresh. I probably should have said thanks years but in the spirit of better late than never… thank you. Keep rockin’.

  14. Hi Maria, so black is the new trend! I am just starting to redecorate a place down in Palm Springs, and will have your voice in the back of my head before I commit to ANYTHING!
    Thanks for your great advice.

  15. Theresa Blohowiak

    Maria,
    I have been following you since spring of 2011. What I enjoy most about your expertise is that you make me think about my ideas on color and decorating across the board. Thank you for sharing your gifts.
    Happy Halloween🎃💀👻

  16. I enjoyed this post very much. I am an “all white” fan but see that decorating with both black or white (or both) requires a lot of skill to pull off. I’ve learned so much from all your posts over the years and love your flair with beautiful colours to bring spaces alive – many thanks!

  17. Happy 12th Blogversity! I am a newcomer, in December it will be my one year anniversary of reading your blog. I would like to wholeheartedly thank you for posts that are always relevant to the issues I didn’t even know had a name. Please put my name in the hat for the Full Collection. I wish you 12+ more years of blogging bliss!! Happy Halloween!

  18. Awesome post on the latest trendy color! And “Congrats!” on 12 years!! I haven’t been with you for 12 years, not even 12 months, but I’ve learned so much from your books and your blog already. Thanks to you, I have a beautiful off-white kitchen in our new-to-us 1970s ranch. Timeless! Thanks Maria!

  19. Yashira Frederick

    12 years!! Congrats! I can’t say I’ve been a reader the whole 12 years but definitely before any of my kids were born so maybe it’s closer to ten. Wow how time flies!

  20. Happy Halloween Maria,
    You are my “go to” person for everything color. I am shy about color, usually feeling very comfortable with neutrals. You inspire me to think about adding more color in my environment/home/clothes, etc. Your posts fill me with joy and promise!
    Always enjoy your Newsletter!
    Karen

  21. As designer it is always hard to steer clients away from what they see trending in magazines and online. Black is timeless but used in little doses. I agree with your thought, “it is only paint” because this is a great way to dip your feet and then be able to change that paint color out down the road……providing that everything else you picked is timeless.

  22. Happy anniversary! I’ve enjoyed the ten years I have been following you. I take long walks around neighborhood and often think I should leave people notes to contact your for advice!

  23. Congratulations on your blogiversary! Your teaching about undertones has been so very helpful to me. It would be wonderful to win a set of Sherwin Williams boards!

  24. Ive known and followed you since the early blogging days! We no longer blog, but Ive taken your exterior color course and am enjoying your IG and blog posts again, after years of not seeing you. Bravo, and I love your success and your spunky personality!

  25. Darlene Mikolasko

    I discovered your blog in 2014 and have read it faithfully ever since. I’ve gained a wealth of knowledge from you…..thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

  26. As always a voice of reason on how to use trends without unbalancing into the deep end! SWneutrals and whites 😉

  27. I have been renovating our whole home. I have used your whites guide for confidence in picking the correct colour. I have been conflicted about a black feature wall with a fireplace if I should keep it. This article helps me decide to keep the black!
    I’d be interested in the BM neutrals, colours and darks.
    Thank you

  28. Hi Maria,
    I’ve learned so much about color and decorating from your blog. If only I had found you before we painted our bedroom. At least now I know why that soft gray I choose looks a little lavender! I would love to win a set of the Sherwin Williams boards so I can get the color right when we repaint.

  29. You are the colour Queen! Can’t thank you enough for all I’ve learned from you and then been able to carry that skill into clients’ homes. Have you ever stopped to think of how many thousands of homes you’ve impacted through the ripple effect? Incredible.

  30. Congratulations on 12 wonderful years! I too am drooling over that animal print sofa lol! Since I have your ebook on whites, if I won the color boards I think I’d go with the one for colors. I wish I could say I’d been with you all 12 years but I can definitely say I’ll be with you 12 more!

  31. Congratulations on your 12 year anniversary! We are in the midst of building a new home, and your clear color advice has been eye-opening and incredibly helpful. I’d be thrilled to win your Sherwin Williams Foundation Collection – what an amazing help that would be as we choose colors!

  32. Everybody has been asking for black so this is timely indeed! If i were to win the boards, i would take a sherwin williams set to compliment my ben moore boards =)

  33. I remember in the 70’sand 80’s we all had slim black aluminum window frames, it seemed so out of date when wide white vinyl frames became so popular on new builds. Then we had a thousand variations of frames available and it became so confusing. I’m thinking that slim black frames with a contrasting trim (perhaps white) would be like “eyeliner,” This modest accent of black would look nice from the outside with the white lining of curtains or shades showing through the glass. The slim frames on the inside might be “just enough” to be a classic accent. I wouldn’t want the black to be thick or bold, so this is a problem for replacement windows as they have wide frames. Thanks for the offer to win a set of boards!

  34. Congratulations on 12 years blogging! Your website is full of great information and straight forward, no nonsense advice! I love that you share so much here. Thank you!

  35. I enjoy your blog so much. Happy Anniversary!!! I would love a set of Neutral and Whites colour boards in Sherwin Williams.

  36. Awesome post. so informative. Been following your blog for several years. I was looking for a colorist when I was redoing my sitting room, was lucky enough to have one in my area that attended your classes. Can’t thank you enough for all the guidance you have proved . Thank you, thank you thank you………

  37. Maria,
    I think I’ve been here since the beginning. I so appreciate all of the knowledge you have generously shared, and the phone consultations I’ve had with you were so helpful. I’ve always used touches of black in my home, usually in small quantities. I do have a lovely black cabinet in my foyer, and another in our office area. Other than that, it is mostly accessories, lamp shade, mirrors, picture frames, etc. Thanks for everything and keep up the great work!

  38. I’ve been a follower for nearly 10 years! I started following your blog, then Pinterest, then Facebook and Instagram, and I purchased your books! Love all the different formats for learning about color and undertones!
    We’ve been updating our home and the flooring, countertops, and tile decisions have been so much easier because of what I’ve learned. (Once you learn about undertones, you can’t unsee them! Which is good and bad at times! 😬)
    Congratulations on 12 years! I’d love the SW Foundations Collection if I win the giveaway! I’m so frustrated with my old fan deck, paint chips, and too many sample pots!

  39. I look forward to all of your posts and am looking forward to the in person color classes next year. Thank you for your timeless advice.

  40. Thanks so much Maria for all the thoughtful and spot-on advice and suggestions and explanations you have provided over so many wonderful years of reading your blog and your books. I have referred your website to so many friends and family as making our homes so comfortable, inviting and loving for the people we care most about is a wonderful gift to provide. So thank you.

    Everyone in my family could use my paint boards of Sherwin Williams whites and neutrals.

    I read this quote a while ago and it fits perfectly with your advice and suggestions and words and examples you provide us. No small feat for sure.

    “ What you think you become,
    what you feel you attract, what you imagine, what you imagine, you create.
    Buddha.

  41. I’ve been living in my current home for over 10 years and I KNOW I was following your blog in my previous home so likely one of your early fans!!

  42. I loved black and white back in the 90s! Actually I still love it. Trying to figure out if it is appropriate to do a black-and-white floor in my laundry room, which is on a different level than the rest of the house. The rest of the house will have a greige wood tone tile.

  43. Maria, applauding your 12 years and your incredible blogs! I had to read this post to my husband, who always goes for more masculine black, wherever he can get it. We did a black accent wall in powder room behind gold mirror and sconces, then Edgecomb Gray on the other 3 walls. Absolutely love it. Not overdone. 😊

  44. My husband and I are embarking on building our first custom home build. I’m an artist and excitedly have been busy painting and storing up all my paintings for our new home. I’ve done the gray thing for the past 10 years and I’m ready for a change. I have been reading everything you have to give me some direction in my color choices. I’ve read through your white is complicated book twice! Our builder is using RTA cabinets with a factory finish so we won’t likely be painting them a color of our choice. But they do have a few whites to choose from. I would love your SW white and neutral color boards so I can get that wall color just right and match up those countertops as well!

  45. Fantastic post! I will stick to using black only as an accent with accessories so they can be easily changed out. Thanks so much for keeping us on the right track!

  46. Maria, I have thoroughly enjoyed your blog posts over the years and find them enlightening in ways that other designer posts are not. With that being said, I totally agree with you on using the color black liberally. I had the pleasure of designing/staging a house for sale a while back in which the kitchen cabinets were already in place and could not be changed, for obvious reasons. This kitchen had an elevated ceiling and both base and wall cabinets (that extended to the high ceiling) were painted black. It was my job to make this space feel more inviting and homey. While I believe that I was able to accomplish this feat as best as possible, it became a logistical nightmare to then photograph this kitchen “in the best possible light”, pun fully intended. Well, as you have already guessed, no matter what your lighting situation is, the color black absorbs all available light from the room thereby leaving the room feeling dark and heavy. Indeed, a little black goes a long way. Thanks.

  47. Hi Maria,
    Although I love reading your blogs and feel like I always learn something, my favorite part of opening your emails is loving the gorgeous, colorful outfits you are wearing!!

  48. Happy anniversary! I have only been following your blog for a couple years but have learned so much about color and undertones it has helped me immensely in my work as an interior designer. Thank you!

  49. Hi Maria
    This is a wonderful “black” summary blog. Great pertinent information and advise all together in one place. Congratulations on your anniversary. I have enjoyed reading and continually learning from your blogs and instagram. I regretted not purchasing your BM color boards while attending your Northbrook, IL seminar and have been eyeing them recently as I will be moving soon and could put them to good use.

  50. I don’t how I Fell upon your blog but so glad I did! I must of been googling paint colors and their LRV. I had no idea about Undertones! Boy, everything made sense after that. Thank you!! No more wrong choices.
    I’ve passed on your blog to my niece, an interior decorator. Oh, and we purchased a sofa in my favorite color- blue! Best decision!!
    Bernadine

  51. Great suggestions on how to be on trend without full/costly commitment. I feel like black trendy houses and kitchens look great because of the excellent and additional lighting, which isn’t every day.

  52. Hi, Maria,

    Congratulations on your blogiversary and thanks for the many interesting entries you have made over the years! I learn something from each one.

    Decorating with black, like using black paint or large pieces of black furniture, is something I can’t relate to. I like lots of light and color, so black might appear in a lamp or a drawer pull, but not in something major. The exception, in my house, is black granite in the kitchen, which I inherited. The other color in the granite is shades of copper, which is the accent I use there.

    I like that you use Ikea in some of your blogs because I have always thought of it as a forward-thinking company. Their kitchens are always creative and thought-provoking.

  53. BLack is back and beautiful! Even with the guidelines of contrast, not over doing it, warming it up with some wood etc…I don’t think I’m brave enough to buy a black sofa!
    Now maybe if I had your color boards………!
    Love reading this blog.
    Cheers

  54. Happy anniversary, Maria! I love your blog so much and have purchased your ebooks, which were invaluable for getting the whites right in my kitchen and the best pale blue gray Neutral for the walls. Now we’re in a new house—whew!—and have the bossiest slate tiles on the main living area floors. Hoping your large color samples can help me decide what colors will look good with those tiles and hopefully soften the dark, masculine look of those tiles.

  55. Hi Maria
    Congratulations on 12 years! I’d love to win your Neutrals and Whites large painted color boards!!!!!!!!!!!

    • Good article on the colour black. I love the colour black and even painted my small powder room ceiling black! Although, it’s a strong colour, best used in small doses, for me. Happy blogiversity!
      Boards: Fullcollection or SW collection.

  56. Your training on undertones and whites has been so very helpful to me. Not sure how long I’ve been following but at least 19 years! Thank you so much. We don’t have BM in Southwest Florida near me, so would LOVE the SW Foundation boards!

  57. Hi Maria! One of the most helpful pieces of advice around black for me was your post about black windows. In doing our exterior renovation (going from drab to white and fabulous), I REALLY wanted black windows, but it was not possible as we were not replacing our current white windows. Then I read your post about the window treatments and what does/doesn’t look good with black windows. I noticed the new build up the street, a gorgeous white house with black windows – and their window treatments were white half shutters. I did not like the look at all and I thought “Maria is so right”! After that I was able to relax about and appreciate my white windows (with my white plantation shutters), and I’ve never looked back! xoxo Sue F.

  58. Congratulations on twelve years!! I’ve only been reading a year or two, but have gained so much helpful instruction in that time. Thank you!

  59. I’ve been following your blog since 2008. Thank you for all of the thoughtful tips for all those years! I’d love to have the neutral and darks color boards.

    You suggested early on that having a black accent would make a room pop. You were right.

  60. Happy Blogiversary! I just started reading your blogs this year but I wish I had found you sooner, as I would have made some different renovation decisions! It’s hard to not go overboard with black – it’s one of those colors that looks so good in inspiration photos but doesn’t always turn out the same way in our own homes. I would love to start with the Benjamin Moore VIP collection because it has a nice mix of neutrals and colors. Thank you Maria!

  61. Your never ending energy is contagious! Thank you for all the wonderful years of blogging and reminding us that…..”boring today is timeless & classic tomorrow”! Great work Maria and many thanks.
    PS: I would LOVE to win the BM Core Collection! Keeping my fingers crossed 🙂

  62. Hi Maria: Thanks so much for the tips on decorating with black. I have purchased a couple of your ebooks and your focus on undertones has helped me immensely! I love reading your blogs.

  63. I never thought black would be one of my favorite colors, but it is! I love what it can add to a room and soooo appreciate the hints shared here for doing it correctly and in good taste. Thank you!

  64. Love your blog – so many ideas and inspiration!
    I love a dash of black in every room; it adds depth and interest. Which is why I use it sparingly, but consciously.
    Only yesterday I finished transforming my daughter’s former room into a library – a soft, but vibrantly yellow library, which is definitely non-traditional.
    If I should win I’d be thrilled with a BM VIP collection.

  65. Happy Blogiversary! I just started reading your blogs this year but I wish I had found you sooner, as I would have made some different renovation decisions! It’s hard to not go overboard with black – it’s one of those colors that looks so good in inspiration photos but doesn’t always turn out the same way in our own homes. I would love to start with the Benjamin Moore VIP collection because it has a nice mix of neutrals and colors. Thank you Maria!

  66. Congratulations on the 12 years, only been here for a couple of years but enjoying every post in my in box.

  67. I don’t know how many years I’ve been following you, but enough that your name is known by my kids! I’d love to win the BM VIP collection since I’m considering repainting my master bedroom and bathroom!

  68. Love your posts. I’ve learned so much from you over the years and once had a phone consultation for colors for my living room/dining room/kitchen that all flowed together but were not strictly open-concept. The colors were perfect and I loved how the rooms worked together. Here’s to another 12 years of great design.

  69. Happy Blog-a-versary, Maria. I distinctly remember receiving your first post all those years ago because I was on your e-mail list as a participating designer in the former Benjamin Moore Painting and Decorating referral service where we first met. You have offered up years of timely and valuable information in an easily accessible format. I congratulate you on your success!

  70. Hi Maria! Happy Anniversary! I am new to your blog and I have been devouring every tip and trick. Black is my favorite! Thank you so much for sharing all of this. I’m a fan!

  71. I have been following you for a looong time, I feel like you have the best advice on paint colors – namely how to think about paint colors. I would LOVE to get one of your sets.

  72. CONGRATULATIONS on 12 years and Happy Halloween!

    I wasn’t here since the beginning, but I sure am glad I found you…

  73. A big thanks to you and your blog – when we had to do two unexpected bathroom remodels this summer (thanks to a burst pipe!) we chose classic and timeless tiles- white subway and white hexagon for one bathroom and white subway and white herringbone for the other bathroom as well as white vanities and sconce lighting. I’m pretty sure I would have fudged it up royally if left to my own devices! I couldn’t be more happy with the results. This blog has helped me so much! Cheers to your 12 years

  74. I have the neutral/ white boards and love them! They helped me with a my kitchen makeover. Your advice had been invaluable in helping coordinate colors with the existing marble fireplace surround. It turned out beautifully.

    I’d like the Benjamin Moore VIP Collection.

  75. Well, that was a fun black hole to fall into. Now, let’s paint all our Airbnb rooms black! (haha, reference to your post a few days ago when people were outraged that you critiqued the cold, sterile Airbnb interiors and dared to bring your own kitchen sink!).

    I just repainted my house’s front door black. It had been a lovely mid range warm turquoise for years. I especially loved it when the orange day lilies bloomed next to it. But the black door is so Elegant I feel like I should move out and let Elegant people live here. I love the black with the antique brass door knocker I bought back from a trip to Spain and with the original 1929 brass mail slot and door handle. I’ve mixed metals as well with a brushed stainless storm door. Miraculously, it looks so good that it looks like I knew what I was doing (I did not)!

    Recently I’ve been considering black paint for my bedroom, having sudden migraines on a regular basis and dark rooms as the antidote. But, how do you get dressed in a black room? How do you wake up in a black bedroom? How do you paint over black paint once you decide a black bedroom is depressing and practically inviting migraines?

    Love the blog, love the concept of demystifying color. Love your take on things.

  76. Happy Halloween and your ‘blogversary’ too❣️ While living overseas, your emails were my go-to, for an always interesting and educational read on what to both do and not do too! It’s sooo hard for us to not listen to trends pushed on us by most decor magazines. You are the steadfast voice of reason and common sense – and your readers love you for it! I just bought a blue sofa and then read your post on not getting a neutral one, haha – made me smile for days knowing stepping out of my comfort zone was indeed a decorating win…thanks again! Any neutral board collection would be a true gift. ❤️

  77. Thank you as always for your insights shared via your blog. I belong to a local Facebook group here where every day there is a post asking for a great white,grey,neutral,black color for interior or exterior. Or for members to weigh in on kitchen choices. I think of you every time now and how empowering your system is for people overwhelmed by how to make these choices! My goal is to own the Sherwin Wms boards for me and my family (and friends)!

  78. Good day Maria,
    I have subscribed to your blog posts since the early days of your blog, and I follow you on Instagram as #onmyway54. You are so very generous with your knowledge and advice, and I look forward to every post that arrives in my inbox. Your Instagram stories are among the few that I listen to each day. I have recommended your site to many people, including my local Benjamin Moore retailer.
    Happy Anniversary, and may your success be as timeless as your advice!
    Trudy

  79. Thank you for all your help! I have utilized your e-design and e-books. I was also fortunate enough that you selected a question with pictures to feature in one of your posts. That helped immensely and now my “tuscan brown” kitchen is bright and classic.

  80. Found your blog 6 years ago as I was scouring the internet for paint color ideas prior to moving into our home and I have been devouring your posts ever since. Using your advice from the blog I was able to land on Pale Oak for our neutral and it has hit the nail on the head for being the perfect canvas to bring our existing hard finish colors into a current look/feel and is so easy for me to decorate around. We also bought a couch right after move in and per your advice, I picked my favorite color (navy blue). In 2 months time I had two major (expensive for us) decisions I made directly influenced by your blog. There is no way my house would make me this happy without your blog!

  81. 12 years! Congratulations!I have been an avid reader of your posts for years. I first heard about you way back when the HGTV website still had the color forums and someone posted the information about you. You have made me very aware of the undertones in color and whites and why colors may just clash with each other when they are dirty vs. clean. Also, the concept of too many busy surfaces was an eye opener for me. Thanks!

  82. Congrats on your Blogaversary Maria! Loved following your timeless & classic posts that don’t waste your money. Special thanks for making color enthusiasts feel as welcome as color experts/decorators! I’m a follower for life-keep up the amazing work-you are so appreciated!!
    Smiles! Donna
    Neutrals, Colours & Darks

  83. Been following you for 10 years — not quite 12, but not far off. Fabulous advice every time. Would love your neutrals & whites collection!

  84. Congratulations Maria! I am decorating challenged and was so happy to find your blog. I purchased your e books White is Complicated and How to Choose Paint Colours and highly recommend them. Your books and blog are chock full of well written useful information for understanding the whys and wherefore of selecting and combining colour. I also have your colour wheel, it is a great tool when shopping. Last week, as per your advice I added two lamps to our kitchen. I love how they have improved the ambiance. Thank you for sharing your knowledge and developing your proprietary colour system. I wish you continued success.

  85. Your posts are always so insightful, Maria. Can’t thank you enough for your never-ending advice about color! I would LOVE a set of Sherwin Williams Foundation boards to add to my color tools.

  86. Happy 12th Blogversity! Your blog is timeless!! I go back and read your old posts often. They are truly informative and helpful.

  87. Hi Maria,

    Congratulations on your anniversary! I have learned so much from your blogs and I use your colour wheel regularly! I am not a fan of black hardware on light cabinets or doors – I think that it is all you see – but I do like a touch of black in a room!

    Thanks!

  88. I wasn’t here from the start but have been a loyal reader since 2012 when I started researching for my kitchen remodel. It’s the only blog I subscribe to! I attended your seminar in Dallas a few years ago.

    Three years ago we built an addition onto our home and I fell in love with dramatic black tiled bathrooms but when it came to my own home I followed your advice and have a bathroom which looks a lot like your example picture with white subway tile a bit more than halfway up the wall and black paint on the drywall portion. The cabinets are white IKEA with chrome hardware. I wanted the black toilet but didn’t want to spend the extra money so I have the throwback looking white toilet with a black seat.

    For our kitchenette I have white ikea cabinets with two floating black uppers around the sink with glass doors, walnut countertops with a black sink and faucet. I love the touch of black. The black faucet is easier to keep looking nice than chrome which gets spots if it isn’t wiped down. But the black silgranite sink takes a little extra care. Porcelain may have been a better choice for cleaning.

  89. I love the black doors! I have painted the trim inside my family room window black, just around the insides of the 4 windows in my window seat. It frames the windows and adds depth. Everyone thought I was crazy when I did this but it is not overwhelming or heavy. It looks beautiful. I wish I could post a picture.

  90. Love reading your posts as you provide so much information. I found you about 4 years ago and look forward to new posts in my e-mail. I would love to have The chance to win your SW Foundation collection.

    Thank you and keeping my fingers crossed. 🤞

  91. Great post, Maria! Thanks for sharing your wisdom and congrats on 12 years. I found you about 4 years ago and have done a lot of remodeling since then. Your advice is always practical and beautiful when implemented!

  92. I think I’ve followed you for at least 10 years. Your insights have saved me so much time and money, and I have a more beautiful home because of you! Thank you for your guidance and I look forward to following you forever!!!

  93. Happy 12 Blogaversary, and cheers to many more years to come!
    Your blog is always so helpful and current. I appreciate the way that you explain the “why” behind your advise. You inspire me to make much more timelss, and colorful choices for my home.

    Thank You!
    Trudy

  94. Your blogs have saved my sanity. We are renovating our kitchen which dates from the 60’s; we had to make do with it as money was rather tight. Now the old kitchen is coming out and the new kitchen is going to be an off white. Light brown wood floor to go with the ash parquet flooring in the rest of the house. I have a black kitchen sink which I want to keep so the countertops will be a black formica perhaps with some veining Your blogs have convinced me to have subway tiles as a back splash. I had never liked subway tiles as the grout always seemed to turn a dingy colour and no amount of bleaching or scrubbing with a toothbrush seemed to change that; but your block on different grout colours was perfect. I have a black leather sofa in my living room. The walls are Powell’s Buff, which is the back ground colour of my curtains. Curtains have a wine coloured Jacobean pattern, couch has wined coloured cushions and 2 with the same print as the curtains. Plus 3 beige sheepskins which mutes the black and a wine coloured throw.

  95. I absolutely LOVE your posts and have for years! You are wise beyond your years in this field! I think I have been following you for at least 7 years or more. Have learned so much and will add the “black tips” to my repertoire! Thanks Maria!!!

  96. Happy Blogiversary, Maria.
    I’m so glad to see that grey is on the way out. After living in a rental apartment with battleship grey accent walls for the past two years, I am now starting to choose colours for my new condo. I have a vision of light and bright at the end of this tunnel. So looking forward to it.

    Penny

  97. Great post. Lots of useful info. We purchased a black bench for our bedroom. I fell in love with the little sparkley buttons in the tufting. To balance it I put artwork with black mats and I really liked how it looked.
    Happy 12 blogversary. And I remember when you started the blog. Tetreeia had to explain to me what a blog was. Lol. How far you have come!!!
    If I am to choose color boards it would be neutrals

  98. Hi Maria
    Happy Anniversary! Your blogs are TIMELESS!!!
    And my all time, can’t get enough, favorite class :Exterior Colour Masterclass!!
    Thank You! Thank You! ThankYou!

  99. Happy Anniversary! I’m not sure how many years I’ve been following you, but I am truly grateful for all your advice. I would love to win one of your color boards! I have all your ebooks, exterior Masterclass and love them. I even did a consultation with you years ago. I’m a homeowner with a two rentals and apply your advice when ever we update fixtures, paint, flooring (though I still can’t find a green beige carpet – maybe a blog post on current carpet styles and a few suggested brands/colors?). You do help me narrow down my choices, though I still struggle and did just buy eight exterior sample colors for our cabin we painted (no fixed elements so SW Dried Thyme was the winner). Will be using all I’ve learned when we update the inside of our cabin too. Timely article for me again! You Rock!

  100. Happy Halloween and Happy Anniversary! I am so happy to be learning from an expert and I always look forward to your Instagram and blog posts. I would love the Sherwin-Williams neutrals and whites board set.

  101. Hi. Maria. Congrats on 12 years! Your blog, IG posts and ebooks have helped me make choices with my home, and fixing up our childhood home to sell (under contract in 10 days!). Yep! Black is an accent…my parents built our home in 1976 with a black bathroom and a yellow one. What’s old is new again!

  102. I still have an email saved from 2010 about turquoise. So I know I’ve been following your blog for at least 10 years!!

  103. You had me when I came across your post about pot lights. I never liked seeing so many of them but now I know why.

    I would choose Benjamin Moore Neutrals and Whites.

  104. Congrats on 12 years. I’ve been a follower for almost that long. I found your blog searching for paint colors that wouldn’t clash with a large brick fireplace that couldn’t be changed. The biggest gift was learning about the difference between dirty and clean colors. I so appreciate that you share your tricks! My husband is always calling me the “diabolical decorator” but all my best ideas have been from reading your blog.

  105. I love your posts and look forward to them every week! I would love to win the large neutral boards for SW. Crossing my fingers!

  106. Great post. Do you still believe that if you use a very, very dark brown, it works somewhat like black. I am not a black fan. I did like the grey trend. I am happy to introduce some very dark brown or even better very dark navy (love navy). I do like the bathroom tiles you show with some black and white. I already own your SW boards. I would love to win the Ben Moore set: Neutrals, Colours and Darks. Happy blog anniversary, Maria!

  107. Happy Blog-iversary, Maria! I’ve been following your blog for about 6 years now and have learned SO MUCH! Thank you! Too bad I didn’t know about your blog since the beginning though because that could’ve saved me a lot of heartbreak, pain and money — as far as color and design go. I’d love to win the BM VIP Collection!

  108. I’ve been with you for 12 years and have learned so much from your blog. Today’s black post is great. I got rid of my black leather sectional in January and bought a cognac leather sofa instead. Instant facelift for the room. I would LOVE, LOVE, LOVE to win the BM Neutrals, Colours & Darks collection.

  109. Your advice on your blog has been so helpful through our process of building our home last year and continuing to decorate this year! I would love to win the SW Neutrals and Whites set!

  110. Okay, okay, okay!! I will read the blog post in just a minute but I just HAVE to enter the contest first!! Pick me!

  111. Margaret Anna Robertson

    Your blogs have changed my life! I’ve loved reading and studying them for the past five years or so. I even have a black chair which goes with a black floor lamp and some black in the rug in my living room. It feels fresh and new every time I enter, thanks to your help! Would love SW color boards to help my young adult children decorate their new spaces.

  112. Happy Anniversary, Maria. Thank you for inventing your system and generously sharing your insights with us. You have saved me tons of money with your advice! I enjoy your blog because you always teach us something valuable.

  113. I have followed you for several years and have learned so much! Thanks for your dedication to keeping this blog going so that we can learn from you. I’d love to have the Benjamin Moore neutrals and white collection

  114. Congrats on your anniversary! I’ve followed your blog at least before you moved into this house – not sure how long! Thanks to you, I totally nailed our beige paint choice in our main living area – when we repainted after the house flooded from a toilet valve leak. Once we repainted, I finally loved my house!

  115. Only since 2012 I think. Back then I read all your posts that I had missed so I feel like I’ve been here from the beginning. I love black but I find with my tiny apartment one has to be extra careful not to overdo it. I did learn from you that yes, I can paint the walls of my walnut sized bathroom black because everything else in it is white(timeless) my fixtures are chrome and if I change my mind, I just have to paint out the walls, change out the black decor and boom I’ve got a new look for my bathroom! I also took to heart what you wrote about how people often are unhappy when they can’t see the final result. My boyfriend balked at black bathroom walls till I painted black colour boards, stuck one on each tiny wall and brought in the accessories. He got it right away. One of my favourite posts about black is the guest post written by the late Susan Hargraves many years ago, which is around the time I found your blog. Happy Blogiversary!

  116. Congrats on 12 years! Your blog is my most favorite of the many interior design blogs I follow because you offer real advice that anyone can put into use immediately. Thank you for that!

  117. Congratulations on 12 years! Your post are so true and easy to understand. I am relatively new here but have learned so much already. Keep up the awesome work!

  118. I enjoy all your blogs; with no background in color, they have been my color college. At first I couldn’t understand how you saw undertones. But with about two years of reading your blog, and learning from your examples, I feel well on my way. We are going to be building a new home soon in the mountains and will need to apply everything you’ve taught. Heartfelt thanks!

  119. Hi Maria,
    Thank you for such an informative post and happy 12 year bloggiversary!

    If I won your giveaway, I would like the Neutrals and Whites by Benjamin Moore Boards.

    Thank you!

    Ginny

  120. While black can be stunning in photos of rooms that are professionally decorated, I agree with your comment in another post, that the only way to decorate with black is using it as an accent color. I couldn’t live with black kitchen cabinets. Cheerful mornings? I think not. Pairing black with cognac, terracotta, and lighter earthy tones is such a nice look. I like those combinations in clothing too. Black slacks and terracotta turtleneck sweater…good to go!

    Thank you for your insights, Maria!

  121. Congrats on your 12 year anniversary Maria! I’ve learned so much here, thank you! Would love to win a set of your boards.

  122. Congratulations Maria!! You know I’ve been with you the whole 12 years. My color boards have come in so handy – I definitely need a new set! Thanks for bringing your color knowledge to the world!

  123. After almost 20 years in our home, we can finally afford some updates and your blog, ebooks and Instagram have kept me on the right track! Thank you so much!

  124. Hi Maria! Congratulations on your blog anniversary! This is my first time posting! I love a well-done black-accented space but agree it is tricky to get it right. Since I love layered and serene neutrals with little pops of color, your posts have been so helpful to read. Am planning a bathroom redo so this post on black shower doors was a good reminder regarding how to keep things timeless! Thank you for your open-hearted and fun sharing and teaching! I would love to have the SW Neutrals and Whites boards. I have your neutrals color wheel but am still working on truly “seeing” the undertones.

  125. Hello! I’ve been reading your blog and following on instagram for around a year and enjoy every post! I just need a push to start executing on your advice. Almost every room in my house is painted yellow, and I’m pretty sure yellow is not a neutral lol. Congrats on 12 years!

  126. My goal to attend your live training in 2020 was postponed, like so much, due to COVID, but it’s on my calendar for next year! I’ve been following you for many years – not sure how many now. I’m always quoting you when I try to help people make color decisions. Thanks for all you do to make the world beautiful and Happy!

  127. I like to wear black, even all black for everyday wear. But in rooms, I like it as little punches of accent–tho I do love me a black piano. Many many years ago, as a young woman, I decorated a bathroom in black and white and yellow, and was very happy with its drama. I would not choose it today, but then again, if I had the right situation, I could see a black and white bedroom dressed in toile, with a bit of some bright color to give relief and oomph. But then…I could decorate a thousand rooms!

  128. I’ve only known you for four years but you’ve changed my business and consequently my life, if that’s not too dramatic to say, with your no nonsense color advice and timeless and classic movement. 💛🧡💛💙💛💚💛

  129. Happy Blogiversary! I am a fairly recent convert to your color wisdom party. I love black & have lost the battle of a black front door to my husband for the last 4 decades. I frequently choose paint colors for house prep as a realtor/property manager and typically use the Benjamin Moore classic colors. I love that your blog is all about creating a timeless look. The Benjamin Moore neutral color board set would help make our color decisions easier and more accurate.

  130. Happy Anni- I think people think I’m paid by you I recommend you so much! I’ve been following you for at least the last 8YO but I think it’s really longer. We loved our home exterior paint consult your team did last year- we finally painted this summer and it turned out great!

  131. Maria,
    I have followed you for at least 10 years. The training from you has taken my business to another level. And, my husband knows exactly who “the Maria” is that I talk about all.the.time!

    Thanks for pouring into me!

  132. Hey Maria!

    I love a little black in EVERY room! It’s so chic! I recently used Sherwin-Williams Iron Ore SW 7069 on an accent wall in a client’s downtown loft and it was the PERFECT backdrop for a beautiful wooden TV console..and somewhat HID HIS SEVENTY-FIVE INCH TV HE HAD TO HAVE! Ugh! (Sometimes we just have to work our color Consult magic!) 😉

    Thank you for sharing this amazing post! You’re the best!
    With love from Minneapolis,
    Patti

  133. I wish I had found you before we had picked our exterior black windows which my husband insisted we install in our whole house renovation! Fortunately, I found you after that decision had been made but before our siding was chosen and you steered us to a beautiful combination. This interior advice will keep us on track with black. My husband wants it everywhere – thank you!

  134. Congratulations Maria! I’ve been here since the spring of 2011 and your posts have helped me move to four different rentals. Thank you! (Just want to mention that your poster at the beginning of this post says 2018 instead of 2008…I want to make sure you get credit for all your years. :-))

    I would LOVE to win the “Neutrals, Colors and Darks” color boards!

  135. Congratulations on 12 years! I started your blog at least 5 years ago maybe longer. I would love the BM neutrals and lights boards.

  136. Happy Blogiversary Maria!
    You’re such a gift to the world! Love all the timely color and advice tips you give so generously!! In the right setting, love
    SW 7020 Black Fox (satin) for interior doors. Super classy & warm. I purchased the SW Foundation Collection last year. Use them all the time, best money ever spent! Would love to add Benjamin Moore boards to complete my color world. Hope to meet you in San Diego 2021!!

  137. Congrats on 12 years of filling the internet with beauty and amazing insights on creating fantastic spaces! You’re incredible, Maria!

  138. Another informative blog. I have a black leather couch so will be seeing what to change. Thanks.
    Maria I have follow you in your blog for possibly 10 to 12 years. I really don’t know. Somehow I came across your blog and never left plus have friends now following you. I resonated with you in your timeless decoration, color expertise and still do.
    If I win I would like neutrals, colours and dark.

  139. Hi Maria, I have been reading your blog from the beginning. Whenever we are contemplating a change in our home I tell my husband “my color expert blogger says……”. We’ve moved/purchased three different homes since you began. We now are in our age-in-place home. We’ve been here only one month but I have referred to you and your blog several times for guidance and direction.
    If my name is drawn I would love your BM collection of Neutrals and Whites. Thank you for generously sharing your knowledge here on your blog.

  140. I love some black in decorating. I have some lamps in my living room with black iron weave look bases with white shades.

  141. Unfortunately, I only discovered you this year as I was online searching like a crazy lady during my renovations in July. I’m so glad I found your blog and I’m now addicted! I actually just had a “Maria” moment this morning when I heard myself say ” That green is too clean for the sofa. It makes it look dirty” Joining your master class is not in the cards for me right now, but I do have the electronic book and it’s on my wish list for my retirement in 2 years!!! For now, I have my stack of painted poster boards. 🙂

  142. Happy Blogaversary! Love your posts .I am actually a fan of black and white but not in my own home! Sounds crazy but I started long ago with light colors and never made that change to black anything. However I did just have my kitchen cabinets painted white. My counter top is a dark brown caesar stone so I decided that dark brown knobs and pulls would look better than the silver I had and I am overwhelmed with how stylish it looks. So dark brown is a little close to black I guess! My island is a medium brown and I think I will keep it brown for contrast. The island counter top is a cream with white in it which I may change later when I find the right top. Since it is small I am finding it hard to find something that I don’t have to buy a minimum footage of. Wow. This tuned into a long story. Sorry. Keep up the excellent blogging. I read every single one with anticipation of learning something.

  143. Congratulations on your blog anniversary, Maria! I always enjoy reading and much of your advice has been incorporated into my home over the years. Keep doing what you do!

  144. Would love to receive the Ben Moore neutrals and whites packet if I win.
    What a lovely and helpful gift idea! I’ll be redoing my entire kitchen soon, and painting some of the bedrooms and the bath.
    Happy blogiversary, and many years of continued success!

  145. You wrote . . . “But the overuse of black quickly becomes boring, masculine, harsh, flat and predictable.”

    While I agree with the intent of your message, I don’t understand why you’re lumping in “masculine” with the other pejorative decorating descriptors (i.e., boring, harsh, flat, predictable). There’s nothing inherently wrong with either a masculine or feminine vibe, it all depends on the overall look you’re going for.

    And congratulations on 12 years. I’ve been a reader from the very beginning and always enjoy reading and learning from your posts. It’s exciting and a pleasure watching you develop and grow your business as you save the world from wrong color choices!

  146. I think I found your blog about 8 years ago. You helped me with paint for my Great Room and some light fixtures about 6 years ago.

    I have started incorporating more black so this post is timely. Also appreciated your recent post about antiques as I have a lot of those and have been reluctant to part with them.

    Thanks for all your tips and tricks!

  147. We were going to buy a black velvet or chocolate brown sofa to replace a recently purchased (2017) off-white sofa that the fabric had shown undue wear with minimal use.

    Long story short, the fabric options from the two vendors for the new sofa did not have any black or brown offerings that looked good… so we chose a light wheat/beige color with a green undertone.

    I’m sure we’ll need to reupholster the existing transitional wingback chairs once the new couch arrives. It’s always something.

    Maybe I’ll add two black occasional chairs – using your handy guides above.

    Thank you for this deep dive into decorating with black!

    Happy Halloween 🎃

    Tara

  148. Hi Maria, you are always so spot on and ahead of the pack. I found your blog 4 years ago on another designer’s Recommended websites, and have learned so much following it and your IG. You put everything into logical context and made it easier to learn. Now I recommend you all the time to any friend struggling with color. And while I am posting, I would love a set of the BM Core Collection.

  149. Maria…. I’d love to win a set of SW boards! I’ve been with you for 4 years, 4 very thankful years. Without you’re help I’d have been in the middle of many disasters. I’m certainly appreciating the black blog today….I’m in the middle of a flip where we are using black at bit.
    Xoxoxo to you!

  150. I love all of your posts on black and particularly the current popularity of black windows and why they won’t work long term.
    Keep up the good work. Love reading it!

  151. Really helpful thank you. The right amount of black looks stunning and its too easy to use too much and tip into trendy without having good advice.
    (BM please 😁)

  152. I signed up April 20, 2014. Have saved most of your blogs. Enjoy very much. Not a decorator just interested in decoration and love color. Happy anniversary and many more.

  153. 12 years! Congratulations Maria and thank you for your continued blog posts and offerings. I so appreciate and enjoy your work ❤️🙏

  154. You have come a long way baby! I’ve been here since the beginning and have enjoyed the ride! Congrats on your longevity . Wishing you many more years ahead and looking forward to what will be next.

  155. I wish I had known about your blog 12 years ago! I’ve been reading for almost 2 years. I’d love the Benjamin Moore Core collection!

  156. Happy Halloween! What a fantastic post filled with useful tips and principles! I am a photographer and consult with clients as we are planning their large wall portrait installations! I would love the treat of winning your large sample boards!!

  157. I’ve been faithfully reading your blogs for the better part of the decade, so Happy 12th Blogiversary!
    IMHO, you’ve taught me to think of white tile as the same as a white blouse, and the color in the removable decor accessories as being similar to a neck scarf or necklace or earrings. It was this relationship (for me) that made me understand that the tile is just the canvas for the color we choose to add on top of it at any moment in time. By using white, it allows us to constantly change our decision about our decor. Just like I wouldn’t want to wear the same jewelry every day, removable color decor items allow me to change my interior design decisions.
    Anyway, thank you for all you do. It has been an education!

  158. Congrats on 12 years, Maria!! I am a 10 yr follower and look forward to every post! You have taught me so much!

  159. Happy Halloween and 12th Blogiversary! I’ve been following your blog for many years (10+) and I’ve learned so much (how to pick classic & timeless finishes, how to identify undertones, the importance of lamps, how decor creates a look and feel, and so much more). I love a touch of black as an accent but won’t be using too much more than that in my home. I live in deepest, darkest Deep Cove so black walls or black sofa’s are not something I’ll be considering anytime soon as the forest and fog make for a gloomy vibe. I need some happy colours in my home to keep me going in the winter.

    Thanks so much for all your helpful posts.

    P.S. I’d love to win the BM VIP Collection (you never know what could happen on a Blue Moon Halloween eve in the midst of a global pandemic!!).

  160. Congratulations Maria! I have followed your blog since taking your color course ~3-4 years ago, as a “color enthusiast”. You have saved me from making some decor mistakes – my thanks!

  161. When your blog notification comes to my email list, it’s the first one I open!
    We’re in a Condo built c. 15 years ago, where all the kitchens have black subway tile and black granite countertops. Apparently there was a black trend in the early 2000s too, or maybe a sale on black? I’m a “black clothes- yes, black furniture- no” person. Black decor shows every little spot or smudge, and also sucks in all the light.
    Your ‘Neutrals, Colors, and Darks’ would be a great choice when the time comes that we can redecorate.

  162. Love this post! Black doors and windows have been a favorite of mine for a while. Black furniture scares me though because of my animals. I would be happy with any of your color boards but the neutrals would help me the most with my cabinet refinishing business.

  163. I’d love the neutral and dark board. I would like to incorporate black into my new suite.
    I’m new to this area and have just come across your blog within the past few months. It’s amazing!

  164. I love your posts and I am so in love with black at the moment. I painted our media room Black Panther but chickened out on black kitchen cabinets. Just doing black on the island cabinets.
    I would love a set of Benjamin Moore colours.

  165. A very timely post! We were just discussing painting a interior door black. I think it might work after reading your post! Congratulations on 12 years of blogging!

  166. Maria, Congratulations on your blog anniversary! Thank you for being so generous with your information. I loved your color wheel concept and was shocked it was free. It prompted me to buy two of your ebooks. I wanted to learn more and so I took your color class last year. I would absolutely love to get my hands on the color boards. They are best way to learn to choose color.

  167. Happy Halloween! I was just speaking with my client about decorating her dining room in black and I’m glad I crossed this post. I will review the rest of the links within the blog and feel comfortable moving forward with black in the dining room. I’ve done it before and it looked great, so I’m excited to see what we come up with.

  168. Hannah Winebarger

    Thank you so much for this timely post (and generous giveaway). I’ve been “scared” of black so appreciate the advice of how to use it well.

  169. Happy Blogiversary and Happy Halloween. Have been with you since May 2013. I was renovating a house with selling in mind, madly lost and searching the internet for even just one tiny little clue. Though you never knew about it the reno was a hit and the house sold in 2 days for above asking price. Timeless hard finishes sell houses. Thank you for that! Would love to enter the giveaway for a color board. The current house needs help. Don’t love black with anything but white and the palest of pale wood floors. Great post as always.

  170. Maria, I love your blog and it feels like you’ve become my friend as I read your blogs:) if I won I would definitely want one of the cream and neutrals!! I want to put a lighter sand or beige color on my walls soon and want to put a lot of samples up.

  171. Crazy how I used to choose colors, now I know a bit better since following you. I at least stop to think about how the color “works” to pull the room together or add the right accent. Thank you!

  172. Just bought a house with lots of oiled bronze details which read as black. Thanks to you our color choices have made them look good. You always brighten my day ☀️Thank you Maria!

  173. Your blog is so helpful and inspiring – wish I would have discovered it many years ago. Reading your posts and viewing the photos really illustrate how black used as an accent enlivens a room. We’re planning a kitchen remodel next year (classic white cabinets) and after reading your posts, are considering a black soapstone or quartz countertop. I’d love the Benjamin Moore neutrals, colors and darks collection. Happy 12th anniversary!
    Renee

  174. Maria, Happy 12 Years. I find your blog very interested. I love working with colours on my quilts and hand hooked rugs, but when it comes to my walls, I am a bit hesitant with my choices. I can now see the undertones of paint colours, flooring and finishes, thanks to you. I’d love to win some colour boards as well. Thanks for running this Giveaway.

  175. Happy 12 year anniversary! I was late to the party and found you in 2010. Your site has grown so much. It’s been a pleasure watching you succeed. Best wishes.

  176. Keeping a blog alive for 12 years is no small undertaking, so congratulations! A friend of mine on Facebook recommended your site many moons ago and I’ve been hooked ever since. I love black in interiors in small doses, but not particularly on walls. I have two bedrooms with elements of black and I think picking the right contrasting colors makes all the difference. Thank you for allowing us to follow your work and wisdom. I would love the SW neutral and white boards as those are the ones I have the hardest time picking. I second guess myself A LOT!

  177. I now ask myself “what would Maria do?” Thanks for freely sharing so much of your knowledge! I’ve learned a lot.

  178. Hi Maria,

    I recently painted my shutters on house SW Tricorn Black and have received many positive comments.

    I would like to win the Neutrals and White Color Boards from Sherwin Williams!

  179. I really wish I had discovered you 12 years ago!!! But I’ve been rigorously following you the past five years 🎉🎉🎉 Thanks for your amazing work and Happy blog anniversary xx

  180. I found your blog only a year or so ago, but have learned so much through your ebooks since then! Congratulations on your 12 years of blogging!

  181. When I painted my bedroom, I made it a soft sage-y green. I HATED it from the day I finished. I finally painted it again, BM Iron Mountain. Very, very dark charcoal. I think it’s a purple undertone? (I’ve learned SO much from you, thank you!) I have LOVED it every single day I wake up in it. What makes it work is that the ceiling, the trim, the door and the sliding closet doors that take up a whole wall are all a creamy white. BM Vanilla Ice Cream. I have repeated that creamy white on the ceilings and trim and even kitchen cabinets throughout the house. I have a large beveled mirror with ornate gold-leaf frame that came from my grandmother. The raw silk curtains are sage green. That sounds dirty, but they’re a brighter sage green than dirty. My duvet covers are always creamy or light green or silvery-grey prints that work with the floor and the curtains. Most of the furniture is a warm brown and the floors are old wood-fir, which turns pretty orange. Ok, my king bed is a Restoration Hardware black-tall headboard. The masculinity of it balances the soft, feminine decor. I just love it, thanks to all of your expert help in these posts.

  182. Having been a follower for about 4 years, I own a set of color boards and have purchased your design services. I’ve recommended your blog to the friends and family who will appreciate your wisdom based on years of experience. I too appreciate classic and timeless, tiring of trends quickly. Though I agree with the person who said we cannot “unsee” the mistakes we’ve made, I’ve learned that we can take away the attention from them with decorating. Your photo examples, especially the before and afters, speak volumes. By helping those who love beauty in their surroundings to build their color and decorating muscles, you do a great service. Wishing you many more anniversaries…

  183. Hi Maria! I’ve been a reader for a little over a year now, and I’ve learned so much from you! We just redid a bathroom and I introduced a small amount of black and repeated it, thanks to your blog. It looks great! We are painting soon, so if I won the giveaway, I’d love the lights and neutrals from Benjamin Moore. I own both your ebooks – the boards would complement them! Congrats on your blog anniversary, and thanks for being a great teacher with a great system! 💛

  184. Maria: congratulations on this milestone! I’ve been with you for about 4 years. I was very very late to the blog/internet party as I was uncomfortable with the tech. I thought all this was for tech savvier people, lol!! But I was looking for info and help, finding it on your site. Thank you for the amazing amount of info you put out. I love your books as those helped me pick the BM Classic Gray in much of my house. I would really love the BM neutral, colors and dark Board collection or the BM neutrals and whites collection. Today’s post is oh so timely as the color black is totally mainstream now as the new neutral. Your pics that show how to do it right versus total overkill are spot on. Thanks for the explanation of the details. I do enjoy going back and reading much older posts. You are always well ahead of the trend curve and do a fabulous job of helping us stay fresh, but keep the bones classic! Thank you for everything Maria!! Looking forward to many more years with you!!

  185. Congratulations on 12 years and thank you for sharing your knowledge. I’d love a set of BM neutrals and whites!

  186. Yours was one of the first blogs I started following. I found it when I was shopping for a bed and you happened to have the one I was looking at in your own home. That was about 10 years ago. I would love the BM whites and neutrals as those are always the hardest to see on the smaller samples.

  187. Happy Blogversity to you! I appreciate everything I have learned from you. I would really like the SW collection.

  188. I believe I’ve been reading your blog since the beginning, but it sure doesn’t feel like 12 years!! I’ve learned so much and love your design aesthetic and joy of color!

  189. Congratulations on your 12 year anniversary! I have been reading you posts for years and first heard of you way back when the HGTV website had a paint and color forum. I am grateful for your explanations regarding undertones in paint, dirty and clean colors and for the wise advice of not having too many busy hard surfaces in decorating. Thank you.

  190. Congratulations! You’ve made me stop and look at color in a new way. I love that bathroom’s black and white mosaic tile floor.

  191. So glad this came out now…just when my kiddo’s are thinking of painting their basement black. Bang on advise every time

  192. Doris Samson Betts

    Twelve years of blogging! Congratulations! And although I only found you in recent years, I have read a PILE of your wonderful, educational and informative blog posts from the past! And I recommend your blog to many others on decorating Facebook pages I’ve joined, often linking specific blog posts you’ve written to cover a topic in question. I think you are spot on with your advice concerning timeless choices and have enjoyed your e- books. I would absolutely LOVE to win your Benjamin Moore colour boards! I did purchase your colour wheel in the last year, z terrific tool. The boards would add even more to my design arsenal…I’ve learned so much from you! Keep up the great work and thank you so much for being so generous with your colour and design knowledge!

  193. I have used black in every room in my home, but no black walls…yet. I love black, but for me, it has to have balance. Our large great room has a very large area rug with a black background and green ivy trellis with a cream border. I’ve had it for years and I love it, so it’s staying. When I was going to have my sofa reupholster, I did think of black, but decided to match the rugs cream border. Now I am reupholstering my smaller chair and ottoman and their fabric is a textured black. I have other pieces in patterned black and cream and one chair in green to match the rugs trellis. The comments are always that they never imagined black could be so rich and beautiful.

  194. Hi Maria,

    I’ve been reading along since 2009, so 11 years (maybe 11.75 ha!) And hired you WAY back when it was just you doing the phone consultations for my living room…it was the best money spent for that living room! I painted my own color boards on your recommendation, and we landed on BM Monroe Bisque (loved it). After that my husband became a believer in hiring a designer…”What did Maria say about pillows you picked out?” LOL!

    We have now moved into a new home for our growing family (still in California) and are remodeling the “new to us” kitchen and great room. The BM Neutral’s and Whites boards would be perfect for choosing a “barely there” neutral for our modern farmhouse (we live in the country now).

    Thank you for 12 years of WONDERFUL articles, AMAZING advice, and design service that does not disappoint!
    ~Annette

  195. I’ve been following you since the beginning, Maria! Your advice is as sound as ever and I couldn’t agree more than when it comes to using black in interiors, the “less is more” rule is the wisest approach. I love that it works so beautifully with warm wood tones, cognac, colors and grieges alike.

    • I found your blog in 2011 as I was renovating a neglected 1920 craftsman bungalow from top to bottom: new kitchen, bathrooms and every surface throughout. Your blog posts pointed me in the right direction to create a timeless home. White cabinets and white subway tile along with honed black granite (looks like soapstone) for the kitchen. One bathroom has white subway tile and we were able to repair an original white hex tiled floor with medium blue greek key border. What may seem to be “boring” choices are completely versatile and timeless. Changing out accessories is all it takes to transform the space for very little money. Maria …I’m so grateful that I found your blog 9 years ago! Thank you!

  196. I use a lot of black—the Parade Home I did in 2018 had black cabs—I LOVED them and so did many others. They look great with natural wood. I also love the black fixtures youve shown, but it’s so important to have a water softener, otherwise they get gross so quickly!

    Love the post! Thanks.

  197. Thank you so very much for opening my eyes to undertones! I enjoy your blog and your instagram posts and have taken the exterior color class and read your ebooks. Thank you for sharing all your “color” knowledge so freely with us.

  198. Love the penny tile In The bathroom and and the happy colors of the cabinets.

    I would love the Benjamin Moore VIP set.

    Congrats on your 12th Anniversary!!

    You are amazing. Rachel

  199. Congrats on 12 years of writing your blog Maria. I found you in 2012, and booked a consult just before a painting update started in my home. Then I took your course in 2014. I’d love a set of boards – BM Neutral and Whites (or SW) to start on my kitchen reno and helping my kids choose colours as they launch into places of their own. Thanks.

  200. We just embarked on the journey of building our retirement home in Texas. I find myself visiting your site daily for tips and things to consider. Your black blog was perfect timing as as my hubby wants everything to be black + white.

    I hope I win one for of yours color boards – especially the whites!

    Thank you!!

  201. Happy Blogiversary. I have followed you for 5 years and love everything you do. Your specifying color with confidence was the best investment I made for my business. Thanks for all you do.

  202. I’m pretty new to your blog but your advice has kickstarted our home refresh after living here for 9 years! I love your classic, timeless style!

  203. Hi Maria…great advice on how to include black and not go overboard. I have done exactly that in my place so good to know I did it right. I do still think your dining room table would look FAB in black but understand/appreciate your words of wisdom.

  204. Thx fir for your help with my house, i love my new wall colors! Id like the neutrals, lights and darks set if i win, thx!

  205. Hi Maria! I’ve been following you for about 6 years. I’m grateful that I found you before we built our dream home!! White subway tile and medium brown wood floors… I will never tire of it!!🥰

  206. Thanks for all the years of sharing great resources -I’ve loved your posts, online classes, and just started a landscape plan with Mary White!

  207. I couldn’t agree with you more. 12 years of writing is remarkable, especially because you write at least once a week and I know from my experience that every blog takes considerable time and research. There are many times when I think ‘what are they thinking ?’ (designers/decorators/architects). They should have taken Maria’s courses! Huge kudos to you!

  208. I have been following you for years and words can’t express how wonderful those color boards are. I have the full collection of Benjamin Moore that have been priceless, using multiple times. I would love the Sherwin Williams collection!
    Thank you for your wonderful blog that I have followed for years. You are a color genius and congratulations on 12 years!

  209. Regina Harkleroad

    Maria, While at home during the Covid 19 crisis, I really felt the need to redecorate and have been contemplating adding black to my decor but wasn’t sure where to add it. I am so glad I read this blog because I think I was about to go overboard with black. Your blog has realigned my thinking and clarified that I need to add black in smaller doses so as not to overdo it. Accents in black is exactly what I needed to hear. Thank you so very much for the advice. I look forward to reading more of your blogs to get other ideas for color additions and paint colors. Thanks again.

  210. I have no talent for design and will probably never be competent at seeing undertones, but I’ve subscribe for about 7 years for my own education and enjoyment. If nothing else, I have learned how to tell when other “designers” are making things up as they go. Thank you!

  211. Hi Maria: I do love reading your blog!!!You have the gift of an “eye” for seeing how to make a room “timeless” but contemporary. I am always inspired by your blogs. My wish is for you to do a series on “form” vs “function”. Sometimes I see images of a house or a room which seems so stylized that I wonder how people can cook, sit or just live in the space. Things get moved by children, grandchildren, partners etc and do not stay looking like the photos for long. While visiting relatives in Scandinavia , particularly Finland, I was amazed at how any room could look lovely yet liveable and I yearn for this!!! Thank you for all your work.

  212. Great post! Love your example photos-the cheetah sofa!!!! Love black but sticking to my green-black front door. If name is selected I would like the neutral, colours and dark boards. Thanks!

  213. Great post as always! Although I can appreciate the trend I’ve already done it years ago. It was fresh for me I love to experiment but no one got it, guess I was ahead of trend.

  214. I only found your blog a few years ago, but it was a great help when it came time to renovate the basement bathroom of our home – the first thing I’ve ever renovated in my life!

    At first I considered a “rustic spa-themed” bathroom with porcelain “wood” plank tile floors, a rustic wood vanity, and aquamarine walls. After reading many of your posts about choosing timeless finishes, and because we plan to move sometime in the next five years, I realized it would be better to take a less personal approach to the room so the next owners wouldn’t feel the need to rip everything out, or grit their teeth in resignation whenever they used the room.

    Our house was built in 1957 and while it’s not “cool” mid-century modern (although the little foundation window in the bathroom sort of looks like a clerestory window if you squint really hard at it), I decided the bathroom should keep to the spirit of the house’s era. Therefore, we installed floor-to-ceiling Pepto Bismol pink everything.

    Just kidding! We installed grey tile floors, white subway tile with metal edging strips for a clean, modern look, a walnut vanity with a plain white countertop, and brushed nickel everything. There’s plenty of wallboard if someone wants to have fun with color down the road. (That black wall with the subway tile in the last picture of this post looks really sharp, but I’m not that brave.) Yes, it definitely taps into the mid-century revival trend that has been so popular, but in our case, I think it suits the house. It’s not hyper-feminine or masculine and it doesn’t stick out from the rest of the house the way a “rustic spa” room would. Every time I go in there, I feel so happy that my first renovation turned out so beautifully. I’m glad I had your blog to help me stop and consider my choices more carefully.

    And since you asked, the Neutrals and Whites set would suit me best were I fortunate enough to win them.

  215. I’m pretty sure I found you about 10 years ago! And I still enjoy your blog as much today as I did back then, I think I’ve read every post. Love your style !!!

  216. Love getting your emails! My black cabinets are 12 years old and really need refreshing, a new paint colour perhaps plus new countertops so I’m just getting up the courage to going on that. I’ll be in touch!

  217. Maria,
    Congratulations on your 12th blogiversary! I’ve learned so much about color from reading your blog and I want to thank you for generously sharing your knowledge, you certainly are the color expert!
    Here is to 12 more years!
    Michelle Holland

  218. Thank you for straightforward advice. I often know when something doesn’t look quite right, but can’t put my finger on exactly why it looks a little “off.” You eventually post an explanation for why something doesn’t look as good as
    It could. I look forward to each of your blog posts. You have saved me a lot of money and grief by helping me to avoid mistakes with color. Despite my increased understanding and confidence, I still want your help with the big decisions and am using a gift to purchase an e-consultation with you!

  219. Happy 12 years. I’ve been following you since 2014. I appreciate all the hard work you put into your blog. It’s the best definitely very informative. Since I’d like to paint my cabinets and baseboards, I think the Sherwin-Williams white and neutral color boards would be very helpful.

  220. Hi Maria, I think I found you sometime in year 1, my daughter was a toddler and she just turned 15! I too attended True Colour Expert Training in Vancouver 2011. I’ve always wanted a full collection of your colour boards and often end up painting my own samples I actually think the idea to make the boards came up at dinner during the training! I think I would choose the BM Neutrals, colours and darks. Thanks for the generous gifting opportunity! Cheers Alison

  221. I think I’ve been following you for the full 12 years! I love your advice, I love the stories about your beautiful family and I love now reading about your amazing wife’s journey to health! Congratulations 🎊 and heres to 12 more! And I would love to win the VIP collection!

  222. Congratulations on 12 years! I’ve been following your blog for about five years and have learned so much about color from you! I have your e-books and I re-read them whenever I am making a color decision. Thank you for sharing all your knowledge.

    Emmylou

  223. Great article! We are remodeling our home and you already had me thinking about doing a timeless decor. I finally get it. Remember Lynette Jennings (1996) when she was on TV? Her theory was yes to black but in small doses. This still applies as you’re teaching us in 2020, it is a trend. Off to see what you and Terreeia are up to on IG. Happy 12th! SW neutral for me.

  224. Hi Maria,
    I love your blog and am so impressed with your knowledge. I have bought all of your e-books, as well as the Master Class on Exterior Color Selection – which I am trying to start!
    If I had to choose one of your Color Board Selections, it would be The Foundation Collection – Neutrals & Whites by Sherwin Williams. Will be tuning in on Monday to see if I am the lucky winner!
    Thanks again for all of your information and inspiration. I always look forward to your topics and learn so much from them.

  225. Congratulations on 12 years! I have been following your blog for at least 10 years. Your insights have saved me time and money and helped me create a beautiful home. Thank you!

  226. Charlotte Ivancic

    Hi Maria. Congratulations on your huge success! Thank you for bringing so much fabulous colour and decorating advice, as well as joy and happiness to our inboxes each week. It’s mail that I actually look forward to opening! I think that I’ve been following your blog for over ten years. I know that you have helped me and my family make our home more beautiful over the years, as well as helping me be a blessing to others with your advice. Right now I am in the process of decorating a suite for a women’s shelter. In January 2020 I used my (your!) colour wheel to replace the dark wall colour with Manchester Tan. It looks fabulous! On Monday I will finish decorating with pillows, plants, art and textiles to make it a warm and welcoming haven and refuge for the next woman who moves in. I would LOVE to be considered for your generous gift of the Neutrals, Colours and Darks Colour Board. Thank you!!

  227. Lynn D from West Van / now Victoria

    Hey Maria – weren’t you doing your Colour Me Happy Blog waaaay back in 2003 when we first met? Congrats on all the years, do you have helped thousands and thousands of people!

  228. Congratulations on 12 years! I found your blog 3-4 years ago and took your course in Houston 2+ years ago. Many times I’ll be watching HGTV renovation shows and almost gag at the color choices made by the “Designers”. There are so many that would benefit from your understanding of undertones! Thank you for sharing your knowledge. I always enjoy your posts.

    I would love the BM-VIP Collection: Neutrals, Colours and Darks.

  229. I’ve been reading since 2008 or 2009. I see undertones everywhere now :). I’d like the BM neutrals and whites.

  230. Congratulations, Maria, on 12 years of blogging. That’s a big accomplishment. I love your blog and learn so much from you.

  231. How I found you I do not know…that I found you is such a blessing! I would have made SO many decorating mistakes: busy kitchen backsplash and counter and floor, paints with the wrong undertones, trendy and not classic and timeless. The list could go on! The BM Neutrals and Whites would be so helpful! Thank you for all you do to educate the decorator inside all of us!

  232. Christine Anderson

    I love your posts and learn so much from you, Maria! Thank you for entering me in the drawing!

    Happy Halloween, everyone!

  233. I have to agree. Little doses of black is far better than a whole sofa or kitchen cabinets in black. Too heavy looking. This is too trendy. Thanks Maria again for teaching us how to handle this trend.

  234. Maria,
    Thank you for all of your time and hard work on your blog! I’ve been reading it for about 11 years. I found you when we were building our home back in 2008-2009. I had already made several mistakes, but when it came to the backsplash I held my ground with the tile setter and my husband. They both kept insisting on a “design” behind the cooktop or some accent tiles. I chose a tumbled travertine to go with the busy granite but used a subway tile style. I’m so thankful for that one “save”. I’ve bought your books and colorwheel and attending one of your color weekends is on my wish list! Thanks again!

  235. Congratulations for 12 years writing the blog! I remember finding your blog & website after I provided the contractor the paint color to paint our oak kitchen cabinetry. I was so stressed because I thought I knew what I was doing as we renovated our kitchen, but had no one to confirm I was in the right path. Thankfully, after reading your blog I determined I was going in the right direction and SO GLAD I didn’t listen to the people who told me I needed backsplash accent tiles!

  236. So insightful! I have always loved black. I’m considering black slate entrance and laundry floors. Timeless?

  237. Maria, I found your blog 6 months ago, and I was quickly addicted, reading everything you have written. As a former hairstylist I have struggled with seeing/and being bothered by 5 million shades of color. You put words to my madness. I am grateful for the wisdom you have shared in both of your books and your blog. I would love to be entered for your sample board giveaway, that would be such a dream come true.

  238. Maria, I found your blog 6 months ago, and I was quickly addicted, reading everything you have written. As a former hairstylist I have struggled with seeing/and being bothered by 5 million shades of color. You put words to my madness. I am grateful for the wisdom you have shared in both of your books and your blog. I would love to be entered for your sample board giveaway!!

  239. I think black should be used in small doses. All the black/charcoal grey homes being built now will scream 2020 in years to come ( certainly not timeless).
    Congratulations on 12 years of blogging. You have built a successful international business since inception. I have learned so much about undertones from reading your blog over the years. Thank you for taking the time to educate us for free with your blog posts. 👍

  240. I am a recent follower of your blog. Thank you for sharing your knowledge and life with us. You feel like an old friend. (Sherwin-Williams would be my choice of boards.)

  241. Hi there, congratulations on 12 years. I’ve
    been following you since 2014.
    Thank you for all your amazing posts.
    Since I’d like to paint our base boards and cabinets
    I think the Sherwin-Williams neutrals and white Color boards
    would be very helpful. Thank you! ❤️

  242. I have been following your blog for many many years. Once on a sleepover night, my granddaughter wore a nightie that said “Colour Me Happy” and I laughed, took a photo, and showed her your blog. That was in 2012 and I had been learning from you for a few years already by then !. Can’t thank you enough for your wisdom and enjoyable writings. Congratulations, Maria! Cheers, Maureen

  243. Hi Maria!
    Thank you for your wisdom for your on-trend as well as classic design ideas! I’ve been in the design business for over forty years and your blogs and commentary are always spot on. I have almost worn out my VIP neutral SW sample boards and would LOVE to have the VIP neutral BM boards!

  244. Dianne Egan Buquet

    Maria, J first found you when I was building my home and had no clue what I was doing. I now have white subway tile and no bossy finishes anywhere. I’m so great full for your guidance! I’d live to receive one of your sets in neutrals, beiges, whites!
    Thank you!

  245. All the photos you posted show white sinks… thankfully. Black sinks always look dirty! There is always soap / hard water residue no matter how regularly the sink is rinsed. Not sure how far the black trend will go, but you need to know this just in case fashion trends towards black sinks.

  246. Congratulations and happy 12 year blogiversary! I love your blog, and I’ve been reading since 2011, when I found it after painting my living room a grey that turned out looking baby blue. I’d love the BM Core Collection boards!

  247. I discovered your blog about 5 years ago but I have read every.single.post you’ve written for the past 12 years! I’d LOVE the Benjamin Moore whites and neutrals!🙏🏻🙏🏻🙏🏻

  248. Fantastic round up! I’ve had a club chair and ottoman upholstered in a large scale floral fabric on a black background for at least 15 years. Now I’m super tired of it so black won’t be in my next color palette. I’m also embracing navy, a color I’ve never used much. I’m thinking of a navy sofa as my starting point.

  249. I love the drama of the black walls and leopard sofa (I would choose zebra maybe) for a room that was all mine. I love some drama in decorating (it is, however, overrated in other categories)!
    Congrats on your blogaversary, and for having so much great content available.

  250. Congratulations on 12 years, Maria! I’ve been with you for at least 8 of those 12 years and have learned so much. I love all aspects of your blog and count it among my top 5 that I love! What a generous giveaway… I’d love to win either The Hybrid Collection or the SW Foundation Boards! Thank you, thank you, thank you! Here’s to many more years of success and inspiration! xo Christine

  251. Always my favourite read Maria! Thanks for all the wonderful posts over the years.I agree with Black in small doses. Can give the eye a rest in a colourful decor palette as well.

  252. This is one to be saved for future reference! I just bought a house that needs a lot of updating and your advice will help so much!

  253. Happy Blogiversary!!! I always look forward to your divine wisdom on all topics. My only regret is not finding you sooner!! I would love to be entered to win a set of the BM Core Collection. Thank you for everything

  254. Thanks for all of your terrific posts filled with timely, and timeless, advice. I appreciate all that you do! It would be great if you could offer your true colour expert training class in Denver some day, but short of that, having a set of your boards, in addition to the e-books I have already purchased, would be a huge help to me. Thanks, again!

  255. Happy 12th Blogiversary! Your blog helped me tremendously with designing my new build! When confronted with any design or color choice, I would ask, “what would Maria do?” Now the house is finished and we love everything about it, thanks to you!!! Timeless and classic. No black, though. =) Thank you a million times over for the content you produce and the insights you have into color and design. It would be a true honor to win the Neutral and Whites colour boards in Sherwin Williams.

  256. I’ve only recently discovered your blog, and what a fabulous resource for any current or potential homeowner! Thank you for the wonderful design advice!

  257. Love your blog and have gotten so much inspiration from reading your posts. I have your color wheel and several of the ebooks. I’ve recommended your blog to many of my friends. Thanks for sharing your wisdom with us!

  258. Congratulations Maria! It’s been a number of years that I’ve been following you and look forward to your post everyday. Wish I had been there at the beginning. Thanks for all your great advice.
    If you’re still doing a giveaway I’m thinking the VIP collection would be nice. Thank you

  259. I recently painted my bedroom and all the wood trim SW Illusive Green. I rescued a beautifully shaped reverse camel back sofa from the alley and had it upholstered in an animal type print of black and silver. I think it is stunning against the painted wall. The other black in the room is a lampshade and the top of my nightstand. I’m still searching for the right rug for the foot of the bed, but it will have some black in it as well. Every room in my house has some black, but most people are not aware of it. Although my kitchen is mostly gray I have painted the two large window frames and sills black, the stove top is black, and a large unframed piece of art has a lot of black in it. Oh, and the door knobs (not the backplates) are black. Four doorways and two windows, all with 5″ trim, are painted OC-23. If asked people would say my kitchen is gray and white. If you include the 24″ TV screen, there is a considerable amount of black in the room. This is how black works for me..it makes all the difference in setting off the other colors in the rooms, but probably would never be mentioned as one of the colors in any of my rooms.

  260. Kathleen Ledgerwood

    Congratulations Maria on 12 years of helping us learn about color. You are a wonderful teacher. I found your site 10 years ago when I was redoing my living room I have learned so much over the years, Thank you,

  261. Congratulations Maria!
    Wow, I’m enjoying your posts but this one helps me reconsider my decorating choices while going for the timeless and classic look I so desire. Thank you.
    Please enter me in THE BM VIP COLLECTION.
    All the best,
    Joyce

  262. Congrats on your anniversary! I’m a new follower and found you over the summer when I was struggling to figure out what white to paint my downstairs. I am not a designer by trade, but consider it a hobby. I have slowly introduced touches of black…a mirror, a lamp base, a few black frames in my family room. Black handles and new light fixtures in my master bath. I would love the SW whites and neutrals. Thank you for all the great advice and for doing a giveaway.

  263. I found your blog this past year and I’m hooked.I only wish I would have found you sooner.I love the emphasis on timeless and classic and also the in depth study of color and undertones.I would love to win your Core Collection of color boards.Thank you for the wonderful blog!

  264. Hi Maria! Happy (Belated)Halloween! When I did my staging training in 2008 my instructor told us that every room needs a some amount of black. I think of this all the time… it’s that contrast we always seek. I am a happy reader of your posts, and a former alumni of your course – Chicago 2015. I would love the core collection. Mine is torn and tattered, well used, and ready for retirement.
    Thank you as always, for your continued sharing of information and pro tips.

  265. I enjoy using black in very small changeable accents around my home. It’s a nice contrast but doesn’t become too much. Great article and reminders about black!
    Thank you!

    SW Neutrals and Whites

  266. Elizabeth Matthews

    Thanks, Maria, for helping me to see that black cabinets in my small kitchen would be absolutely wrong! And your colour wheel has been a lifesaver several times now. Your blog is always one of the high points of my week.

    I would love to be entered for the BM VIP collection.

    Hugs to you for all you do!

  267. Happy anniversary. Love the blog. I have used two or three of you e designs and am very happy with the results . I hear you in my head every time I look for lamps !

  268. Love you, Maria! I have been with you for a very long time, and have read all of your posts – many more than once.

  269. Brilliant post, Maria! Your perspective is so helpful and I feel ready to dip my toe into this trend.
    I think I’ve been with you for the majority of your 12 years of blogging. Love it and appreciate your colour savvy! Thanks again!

  270. Hi Maria, I’ve been following you for about one year. I am a retired healthcare designer and needed help with some problems in my own home. Your blog has been a game changer for me and has enabled me to be more deliberate in my choices. I am now helping friends with their homes and loving that I now understand how to work with undertones. -Andrea

  271. Hi Maria…I’m a newcomer (within the last year) and just in time. We are doing a kitchen Reno this winter (it is almost 40 yrs old!!!) and we are going timeless & classic and Never boring 😉 thanks to you!!!

  272. Hi Maria, I read all of your blog posts. Your approach to color has helped me make informed decisions about my home. I share your classic and timeless style and I love how you advise to make trendy choices the most easily changed items in your home. I would love to win your color boards- what a treat that would be!

  273. Can’t believe it’s been twelve years already…I think I’ve been following you since early 2009. You’ve taught us all so much…I follow your advice every time I make a design decision. Congratulations!

    If I win the boards, I would love the BM Neutrals & Whites.

    Thank you

  274. Hello Maria. I think that I came across your blog in 2012 or 2013 and have since enjoyed and appreciated the advice you share so generously. If I could be so lucky, I’d love the BM VIP collection. Congratulations.

  275. Happy blogiversary. I’ve been following you since the early days when you lived in that lovely house in Vancouver with the great large windows. You’ve taught me a lot and give great advice. Wishing you continued success!! Cathy

  276. I think every room should have a little black. Not because it’s trendy. But I think it gives the eye a place to rest. But that may be because I love color and use it liberally. 🙂

  277. That’s a lot of info over 12 years you have gifted your followers with. Thank you for your generosity! I have been a follower since 2012. Haved always loved color, but in our previous home, I overdid it on the walls! In our new home, I was unable to make any decisions, because of the old home mistakes. Then I found the Color Expert, Maria Killam. You have been my blog educator and my Benjamin Moore color boards, ebooks, and Masterclass have been my tools. Thank you!!! Now I need Sherman Williams color boards

  278. I love all your posts on black. Your examples of using black in exterior finishes, with your online course, has stuck with me and helped me navigate my exterior finish selections (esp. when my architect specified black windows and I said ‘no’). Thanks for giving me confidence💝

  279. Maria, thanks for all the advice that I have used over the last 12 years! I am a realtor and property stager and needed to feel confident in choosing colors in my personal life and my business. I read your first book and have followed your blog ever since. My favorite post was on how to update an oriental rug in your home. I even bought the Serena and Lily modern wing chairs you showed in blue buffalo style and have loved them! You have become a star in the color world and I will continue to look forward to your blog posts!

  280. Thank you for all your painting advice!! It really helps! Thanks for this giveaway. I will be picking out paint for
    a lakehouse soon, so would come in handy!!

  281. Wow, 12 years. That’s a lot of creativity and commitment and showing up. I didn’t find you a dozen years ago but it’s been a few and I have learned so much and genuinely look forward to your posts every single week. Much love to you and Terreeia and your mom.

  282. I am curious when masculine is used as a negative — I have never loved decorating that is super-feminine and I still like wood. Can we get some more posts about darker colors or decorating for men and boys? Also, the thing about black and dark is dust!

  283. Hi Maria!
    I am a new follower and have been enjoying all of your posts. I learn so much from your blogs especially as it relates to color. I am a fan of the neutrals and whites of the Benjamin Moore colors because I am most familiar with these – would love to have their set of Color Boards! Since I am a Realtor, I often am consulting with clients on how to best stage their home to sell; while this seems to come naturally to me when advising my clients, it’s not so natural for me in my own home – wondering if you’ve ever covered that in a blog before? Congratulations of your Anniversary!

  284. Hi Maria. I have been following your blog since 2010 when I was first renovating a home. You helped me out with a front door-trim colour. Now we are looking to build and I come back to your blog posts to find all the golden nuggets you have shared on the “do’s” and “please don’ts”. This black blog post is great!

  285. Happy Anniversary and thanks for sharing your knowledge! I only found your blog over 6 years ago when I was planning my kitchen. It was your advice, books and an redesign for my backsplash tile that allowed us to build the kitchen that people still tell me looks gorgeous and like a magazine. It’s perfect to me and I think will be classic. I’ve also recommended it to many people when they ask for help with an issue. It’s always easy for me to find a blog entry that provides people with insights that help their choices.

    I would love a set of the Neutrals & Dark Colour Boards. I love your house but I’m making safe choices I have very little colour in my house and would love to branch out but having some great colours that you’ve selected would give me more confidence. I’ve built my own very small set of Boards (about 15) which people ask to borrow at times but it isn’t enough. I’m also at the life stage where so many of the young people we know are starting to get their own places and would love to be able to share with them the knowledge gained to get them started on the right step.

    Thanks for continuing to share your insights with all of us!

  286. Great and timely post as I’m selecting tiles for 3 bathrooms in a new home. After reading the post I will not introduce black tiles but rather opt for black paint and use white subway tiles.
    I would love to receive THE BM CORE COLLECTION
    50 Benjamin Moore Neutrals & Whites.
    Thanks!

  287. I have read your blogs for many years and hence have used a lot of white subway and BM classic gray in my projects. Love that combo with Carrrera marble tile.
    Would love to win the SW color collection as many painters seem to prefer SW over BM (price point). And color matching NEVER works, does it?

  288. Happy Blogversary! No black furniture and/or paint for me but I love my black and white hexagon tile bathroom floor. My first choice would be the Colour and Dark boards.

  289. Hi Maria! Love this post. Yet ANOTHER PERFECT explanation of why, what, where, when & how for creating that classic and timeless look we all are dreaming and scheming about! Your posts are always on point with just the right amount of professionalism, inspiration and humor. Thank you for always keeping it REAL. I would love to have the Sherwin Williams Boards. Attended your class in NJ (worth EVERY PENNY for anyone even considering) in May 2019 and bought the BM Boards. But would love the SW ones!! Hope I’m the lucky one! Cheers xo Julie Martin

  290. I tend to buy beige couches so I can update the look with pillows, paint and tablecloths, etc. I like the idea of picking a couch in your favorite colour but my husband would not go for a purple couch!

  291. Colour is complicated. You make it understandable. Congratulations on your anniversary! I like black used sparingly. My preference is the BM White and Neutrals collection. Thank you for having a give away.

  292. Hi Maria!,
    Wow it’s really been 12 years? Happy Color Me Happy Anniversary! Wink 😉 I’ve been following for a very long time.
    Who knew color would still be such a hot topic especially in 2020. While being at home 🏠 our walls have spoken asking us to “paint attention, and paint with a purpose”. The more we know the better we do especially with Black. I like to think of Black as the little Black dress in the room especially if it’s velvet it’s classic and adds a touch of sharpness like top stitching on a tailored jacket.
    🍁 THE BM VIP COLLECTION is my choice 🍁

    All the Best for 12 more years of Color us all Happy learning fun!

  293. I have only been following you for about a year, but have learned so much! I not only benefit from your color expertise in interior/exterior design, but also love seeing your gorgeous outfits! Congratulations, and thanks for sharing your knowledge.

  294. I shy away from having a lot of black in a room too. Accent pieces, lamps, or black stair railings are great. I love the drama of black but most people’s lifestyle doesn’t lend itself to black walls or flooring. Having had a black car made me realize how difficult the upkeep is, every dust particle, dirt, ding REALLY shows up on black.( That saying, there isn’t anything prettier then a black car.) I like different colors and I can appreciate the drama of a black wall. And I love a black door. But I would be a slave to the maintenance factor. Thanks Maria for sharing examples of this trend.

  295. Congratulations on your 12 year blogiversary!! I’m not sure how long I have been following you, but I know it was at least a computer (or two?) ago, and it was when I had an older email address, too. Your advice has always been much appreciated and useful. Thank you!

  296. Hi Maria. I have been following you just shy of the 12 years. I value your advice and would be beyond thrilled to receive the Benjamin Moore VIP collection boards. Thanks for 12 years of coloring us happy!

  297. Happy anniversary, Maria, from Kelowna, BC. I have been reading your blog for over a decade and have learned so much! Recently painted the ceiling in our new lounge BM Black Beauty for some drama and it is lush and warm.

  298. Hello Maria. Congrats on 12 years! I love and appreciate all you advice when it come to colours as well as design. You are truly an inspiration to me. I would absolutely love to have the BM full Collection. Thank you for all you do!

  299. Maria,
    You were the very first blog I found and followed -11 years ago (YIKES!!). After I found you I spent a weekend going back and reading ALL your posts from the very beginning. I believe that your success is due to your freely sharing your knowledge (as well as lots of hard work, of course). I love ALL your posts and I have learned SO much from you!!

  300. Maria, thank you for keeping us so informed with color! All has been fascinating to learn from you!
    Best,
    Diane

  301. I get enough black in TVs & coffee makers, etc. Too much black brings me down so a little goes a long way. I love to read your blog even though I am clueless when it comes to decorating. You have such great ideas.
    I would be interested in the Neutral package if I were fortunate enough to win.

  302. Hi Maria,
    Hopefully you don’t get this message multiple times! I’ve been having trouble leaving a comment.
    I would love to win the BM Neutrals, Colours and Darks Boards!
    Love your blog, your way and style and your aesthetic…I think i’ve been with you for the12 years although not from the first post!
    I ddi attend the True Colour Expert Training in Vancouver in 2011. I think the idea to sell the colour boards came up around the dinner table at that course?!
    xo Alison

  303. Insightful as always. The photos add understanding to the well-thought out concepts you present here. Thank you for sharing. I always learn something new reading your blog.

  304. I wouldn’t decorate because something is trendy. Decorate with what you love including colour. Furnishings are too expensive. If you love it and it really reflects you, then it becomes timeless. As far as black goes, a little bit of black is great to ground the room. There , my two cents worth! Lol…

  305. I agree. Maria.I wouldn’t decorate because something is trendy. Decorate with what you love including colour. Furnishings are too expensive. If you love it and it really reflects you, then it becomes timeless. As far as black goes, a little bit of black is great to ground the room. Happy anniversary …