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Art and Beauty

What is Enlightenment and Other Deep Questions

By 12/10/2009January 27th, 201722 Comments

Every month when my newsletter goes out I post a special article that is not included in my blog especially for my newsletter subscribers.

This month was no different , thus the headline in yesterdays post titled “Which paint colours are the most timeless?” where I gave anyone that was interested the opportunity to subscribe if they wanted to read it.

You know, like a gift.


After the 3rd comment saying, “I would rather read a blog where I don’t need to subscribe to something to get the information”, I realized what was happening behind the comments (you know how we are never upset for the reason that we think).

That is, we all want the magic answer (I know I do) for everything that makes us anxious. And paint colour is no different.


Some of you were upset that there was something you had to do to read the article or maybe it was just that you even had to wait because you thought that it included a list of ‘can’t go wrong’ paint colours (which it didn’t).

And the reason why there was no list is because there is no such thing as a timeless or perfect paint colour.

Even white is not timeless. As I wrote in my “White is a Snob” post, white is one of the most difficult palettes to work with should you choose to decorate around white walls.


Instead my article included 3 tips on the steps you could take towards having a timeless interior but did not have the magic pill on which colour would take the angst of choosing colour away from you (sorry).

Basically the answer to that question would be the same as the answer to “What is enlightenment? Or here’s the secret to happiness. . .


Wait. Are you sure you want to know?


Okay, here it is. . .

If you want to be happy, be happy.

And there is no easy answer to the first question because enlightenment is also a process and a journey just like decorating your home.

Image source

Without the right lighting, artwork and accessories there is no ‘right’ or ‘perfect’ colour in the world that would work in everyone’s space, all of the time. It’s personal and custom to your space, just like the answer to happiness or enlightenment would be for you personally.

A flower for you (via flickr)

And just so we are clear, (it’s not a secret) I write this blog so that you will get that I know what I’m talking about and maybe even hire me at some point to choose colours or decorate your house or attend my true colour expert colour training, and then you’ll have another reason to be happy.

Because that’s my mission, to give you the confidence in making the right colour choices so that walking into your home fills you with happiness!

A snow heart for you! (via flickr)

Thanks for reading my blog, it contributes greatly to my happiness, reading your comments, and emails and getting to know some of you personally!

Related posts:

Happiness is. . . when what you think ,say and do are in Harmony
Happiness is. . . Living life as an Adventure!
Happiness is. . . Discovery

While you’re here, subscribe to this feed so you don’t miss out!



  • Design Junkie says:

    the right paint color might not bring enlightenment, but the wrong one can definitely bring despair…luckily, happiness is just a couple of gallons of paint away (at least for me)

  • Lauren says:

    Maria- you're amazing. I love your honesty & thoughtfulness.

    I think it's so true about what you said about being happy. Just BE HAPPY if you want to be. SO many times ppl think x y z needs to happen before they can "be happy" and then of course something else always comes along.

    At home we're working really hard in trying to be in the present moment & to enjoy each day & not "click the time away." I'll be honest, we do have to remind ourselves of this fairly often bc it's so easy for us to say "I can't wait until…"

    Anyway I also love that you recognize how personal timelessness is.

    hug hug!!

  • Francine Gardner says:

    Love your posts about colors…i find inspirations in many different palettes taken from nature, architecture or just life…Even on my website, i have a section just for my inspirations…. Here's the link:
    I really love the way you introduce colors via your beautiful images, and well thought out knowledge of color palettes.

  • Renae says:

    You have a fabulous way of words and putting them with beautiful images. A gift indeed!
    I'm sorry your hotel in NY was a disappointment…bummer, but hopefully it didn't put a damper on your trip overall!
    Blessings girl!

  • Karena says:

    Maria, your comments mean so much! maybe some bloggers are completely altruistic. I love to inspire through my art site, however yes I also want to sell my original works of art. I have not added advertisers and yes, I am considering that. (even though some of my favorite bloggers have so much that I feel it clutters their site!

  • Debra Phillips says:

    great post maria!

    as i get older i realize and accept
    -that i cannot make everyone happy. having a business, that is hard to accept at times.
    -you are soooo right; DECIDE to be happy
    -your blog puts a smile in my heart, and inspires me. so thanks for what you do

    my recent post is on turquoise, hope i got it right

  • Maureen Sullivan Stemberg, Interiors says:

    I loved your post today. And all the comments that followed. I do not feel a paint color, can really make a person happy or unhappy. It can indeed make the difference between a good room and a great room.And how one feels about the space when they first walk into a space.
    Happiness, must come from within…Being grateful is a good place to start.
    This post brought me joy today. Thank you, Maureen

  • Ideezine says:


    Perfect post and yet some people still won't like it.

    Happiness is an inside job that R I P P L E S outward and our homes, jobs, clients and daily tasks are no different. Our health is our wealth and happiness which contributes to our personal value to our family, friends, and furture. Happiness is a good thing…take it personally.


  • chanteusevca says:

    Maria, You are brilliant! I love how you tackle things head on — so honest and forthright and brimming with great insight and wisdom. I, for one, cannot wait to hire you to help me select the colors that make me color happy in my home. In the meantime, I continue to learn and glean great information from your blog and newsletter. Thank you for all your extraordinary gifts.


  • Anonymous says:

    Some blog readers are just here for free design advice. They will never hire you, anyway. I see these people everyday in my business. Don't worry if they are ticked because you don't give it all away. I wouldn't tease them into thinking it is going to happen. Our ideas are our livelihood.

  • Arlene says:

    Which Paint Colours are the Most Timeless?
    I'd have to say … (since they've all been around since the dawn of creation) … all colours are timeless! 🙂

    1. Red = passion, excitement, fire, love and war.

    2. Orange = enthusiasm, creativity and flamboyancy.

    3. Yellow = sunlight, energy, joy, hope and happiness.

    4. Green = life, nature, freshness, growth and renewal.

    5. Blue = sky and sea, calmness, coolness and gentleness.

    6. Indigo/Purple = royalty, power, magic, spirituality and nobility.

    7. White = strength, clarity, power and purity.

    8. Black = classical elegance, mystery, sexiness and sophistication.

    9. Brown = stability, wholesomeness and earthiness.

    10. Gold = wealth, prosperity, prestige and grandeur.

    Etc, etc… 🙂

    Thanks for sharing your wealth of knowledge Maria.
    You rock!!

  • Marlo says:

    Eloquently put. I admire your honesty and valour.

  • DesignTies says:

    Speaking of choosing a colour… I chose Edgecomb Grey. And hopefully you'll be happy when you see who won our giveaway…. 🙂


  • Michelle says:

    A color expert and a therapist – what a blog! Thank you for sharing your talents. I always look forward to reading this blog very much.

  • Traci Zeller says:

    Maria, you are the best. I just love your blog … and your insights! I hope you do get around to writing your color course, because I desperately want to take it. Even as a designer, I know I can benefit from your incredible color expertise. As I pondered a color for my own laundry room over the last couple of days, I appreciated the lesson you shared from your client's "mint green" trade show space! 🙂 And your blogging advice has been invaluable. THANK YOU!

  • Susan says:

    I like the way you wrote this post. It reminded me of something I read last week on a marketing companies blog. They put out the question "what is your purpose in life?" and then went about videotaping peoples responses on the street.

    It surprised me how many people did not know how to answer the question. The "enlightened" ones said "to be happy".


  • GREAT POST! loved it!

  • Candied Fabrics says:

    Well written, with wonderful images! thanks!

  • Tazelaar123 says:

    If you're looking for a color in a room, on a house, on a towel etc. to make you happy (and who isn't) you need to be willing to take some time and look at more than the wall, the towel, etc. Ya gotta look at yourself.
    Which color will marry with you? How do YOU want the room to feel. A Pro can help guide the total package and make it sing. But you need to look at you first and only you can know how you feel about any color. It isn't rocket science,It's more complicated than that. It's personal.

  • The Blasphemous Fiendess says:

    You are also demonstrating marvelous professionalism. How rude of people to write impatiently. Everybody want something for free. I have noticed, a i'm new to the blogging world, that many bloggers are blogging as an adjunct to their business. If I needed a decorator i would hire you in an instant, although I think your fee to come to the island might be a challenge! You already offer so much wisdom and advice and you are so obviously a darling person. I feel very defensive of you. Why would anyone think there is a perfect color for their home that someone else would subscribe. If I hired a designer I would be pretty clear about the colours I love and what I can't live with. Oh I could really get going here and babble on. Hugs, Maria. I think you are great.

  • Lisa says:

    You are so very special to so many of us. I have noticed over the year that not only do your clients love the finished product, they loved doing business with YOU!
    When the limo breaks down Maria, we will all ride on the bus WITH you!
    Thank you for all your support and kindness over the year. Yes you have been a teacher but you have also become a friend.
    xo Lisa

  • Soma says:

    I marvel at your ability to speak so elegantly where others would balk. And your mission is so comprehensive, yet so concise.

    I love love love reading your blog!

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