Monday, 16 May 2011

Paint colors: Round Two

I have a confession: I didn't take photos in the red brick building over the weekend so I don't have new ones to share with you.  Bad, I know, but I forgot.  In case you didn't notice from the image quality, I'm not so into photography.  Anyway, I'm sorry and I'll try to take some soon.

This morning was all about picking up Round Two of paint color samples and applying them in (what feels like) two dozen rooms.  I think I'm getting closer, though there will definitely need to be a Round Three for some of the spaces.  One interesting thing I'm noticing is that even if a color isn't right in one room, it might still be very appealing in and of itself and I can move it around and try it in another room.  I did that a few times today with Round One colors.  Keeping in mind that the colors on the screen look almost nothing like they do in reality, here's what I have so far:

Common Entryway Floor (the walls will be navy blue silk dupioni):

It's Benjamin Moore Old Navy.  I wish it was a bit darker and with a smidge more purple, but it's the closest color I found to the silk fabric.  I might swing by Home Depot and see if one of the brands they carry has a closer match than the specialty paint store.  Or I might brave the color matching system at the paint store.  The problem is that they don't sell pints of color matched paints - only gallons, which seems like a crazy price simply to test something.  I asked the paint guy how I could know if would be right and he said "trust me".  With something this subtle? Yeah, right.

Owners' Entryway:

I'm looking for a pale but bright blue to give me a light, sunny jolt after passing through the navy common entryway.  (There's no natural light in our entryway.)  It needs to have some gray in it to harmonize with the porte cochere curtains of the coat closet doors, but not clash with the more jewel-like tone of the navy.  I've got it down to three:

Farrow and Ball Cabbage White:

Farrow and Ball Borrowed Light:

C2 Kind of Blue:

Next is our open concept living room/dining room/kitchen level, which I want to paint all one color (except the powder room, which I'm planning to cover with buff pheasant feather pads.  Seriously.)  I had the perfect color in my living room in London and want the same thing here, but it's a bear finding just the right match.  Maybe the light is very different? Everything looks either dull and washed out or waaaay too cold and dark.  The three I haven't ruled out yet are:

Benjamin Moore Icicle:

Farrow and Ball Pointing:

Farrow and Ball White Tie:

For the walk-in closet in the master bedroom, I'm going with Farrow and Ball Red Earth:

The master bedroom itself is trickier. I want a light nude/flesh tone that's not too pink (girly), not too brown/grey (muddy/dirty), and not too yellow (then it's just cream).  Benjamin Moore Pompeii is nice, on the more yellow side:

Benjamin Moore Colonial Cream is nice on the pinker side:

Bu to complicate matters, all along I'd been thinking about painting the master bedroom and bathroom different colors, even though the wall between them is glass so they're pretty much open to each other. (I'd been thinking of painting the bathroom cream.)  Today I started wondering whether they should be the same color and whether it would be distracting to even subtly vary the paints.  The cream I like best in there is Farrow and Ball Tallow:

If I do go the all-one-color route, I could still use Tallow in the tiny cubicle where the toilet is. 

I'd like to paint the exercise room/guest bedroom a blue that's warm enough to be energizing but that's not wimpy either.  The thought being that I want the room to be decorated, even elegant, and not some no-man's land that's just a box with weights in it.  (Undecorated workout spaces are one of my pet peeves.  Just because you're sweating doesn't mean you want to be surrounded by ugly.  On the contrary, you want something beautiful that entices you to linger and thus sweat more.)  I'd like to make the space a little masculine so that it's got a slight gentleman's study atmosphere, so there's that to keep in mind as well.  All the paint colors in the first round seemed either too sweet or too light.  In Round Two, I swatched Farrow and Ball Borrowed Light (see above) and it looks pretty good.  If we don't go for it in our entryway, maybe we use it here.  I was thinking about getting a pot of Farrow and Ball Stone Blue but chickened out, worrying that it will be too dark and definitive.  Now I might go for it after all.

I've tried more colors in the headhouse than anywhere else (about a dozen).  It's tricky without the roof garden in place, since that's what will determine much of the look.  The room itself is almost all black aluminum windows, with very little wall area.  I could see maybe wrapping the wall color over the ceiling, as long as that doesn't further lower said ceiling.  So many desires: I want to make a color statement (while staying sophisticated).  I don't want to negate the brightness of the space (which it its entire point) but on the other hand I don't want a color that will make the room feel bakingly hot when the sun is shining either.  On the subdued side, I've got Farrow and Ball Pavillion Blue, which looks so little like this in real life that I'm hesitant to even post it:

Honest: in real life it approaches an extremely pale turquoise and I get a kick out of its aqua tone.  On the bolder side, I've got Farrow and Ball Mahogany:

(It's warmer/more red/purple in real life.)  I think anyone would worry when painting a room dark brown.  It is after all a neutral, though, I do like dark brown, and I'm intrigued by the idea of picking up the color of the soil in the garden as a way to further integrate the indoors with the outdoors.

I painted swatches of Farrow and Ball Calluna and Farrow and Ball Dorset Cream in my boyfriend's daughter's room:

 We're going to narrow it down to a few choices and then ask what she likes best.  I like Calluna a lot, though it has too much purple for my boyfriend to be thrilled about us using it in more public spaces.  I feel like I'd get tired of Dorset Cream, but it's not bad in itself and maybe she'll want a yellow.  Later in the color selection process, I want to try a few blues in her room that we like but nix for other places.

Speaking of trying things in one place that we like but ruled out in another, the close calls from the master bathroom and second floor living room/dining room/kitchen are ultimately destined for swatching in the guest bathroom, the sole remaining unswatched space.

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