Saturday, August 4, 2012

And what about the living room wall color?!

I completely forgot to delve into that project-- it seems like eons ago that John tackled the painting of the living room and dining room (on the 4th of July no less, when I was out having a pregnant-day with fellow pregnant friend Mary... We were getting pre-natal massages while John toiled in a patriotic heat-wave to get the painting finished before he headed back to work on the 5th... What a guy!)

I was convinced the wall color had always been a little off in the living room and dining room. I loved the color, Benjamin Moore's "Light Daffodil", but it was just never as pronounced as I wanted it to be, a little too creamy and yellowy, and without the contrast to the ceiling and trim that I'd hoped for. After we finished with the construction on the baby's room, the wall between the living room and new hallway needed to be painted anyway, so I thought, what better time to seize the opportunity and repaint the whole space?! Yay! (Okay... not yay, not really... But I've sort of been in a "now or never" mind set since the baby factor came on the scene, so I was not to be swayed.)

I was looking for something a little more defined, but also still soft and neutral, and wanted it to be a smooth transition into the bold color of the new hallway (Benjamin Moore's Marlboro Blue) and to tie nicely in with the crazy IKAT print of the Eames lounge chair and dining-chairs-to-be. After much comparing and contrasting, I decided to break from the mold again, and go with another color from California Paints (gasp!) I know-- I really do prefer the quality of Benjamin Moore over California, and John has even complained that the so-called "scrubbable" paint made by them isn't remotely as "scrubbable" as Benjamin Moore's, but what can I say? I'm a traitor? I'm not practical? I'm an impractical traitor? There ya-go!

I even put together a little collage for you guys (up above), so you can see how all of the colors of the apartment relate to one another... Keep in mind that these colors are the backdrop to many colorful accents: There are "pops" of orange in almost every room (counter stools, accent lamps, the oriental rug, the changing table pad & glider cushions, our vintage dresser & dressing table) and then more splashes of a grey-ed navy blue throughout as well, seen also in the oriental area rug, the Serena & Lily Charing Cross Rug in the baby's room, blue & white polka-dot curtains, and blue accent pillows...

My attitude toward color tends to be one based on balance... For my own spaces, I rarely go in for something very zen and monochromatic, but gravitate instead toward a design where the walls are more quiet and the patterns and fabrics are a little more bold, or vice-versa. In the living room and dining room-- where we are using the punchy IKAT fabric and the colorful oriental rug for inspiration, and where we have lots of playful art work chopping up the walls-- I chose a more subdued color that would allow the art and furniture to stand out in contrast to the quiet of the walls. In the narrow hallway where we have only the large white expanse of the IKEA closets to contend with, I chose a more saturated color that really "jumps" in such a small space. Playing back and forth with this balance can be a fun way to incorporate calm and crazy colors into your home without making the whole place feel like a mad house. The key word there is balance -- it's important to try to think about your space as a whole rather than as a series of separate rooms with separate ideas for each, or you can end up with a house that feels like it was designed by ten different people based on ten different philosophies... I think this is particularly important in apartment living, when you really want to emphasize a feeling of continuous space in order to make your limited square footage feel as expansive as possible... 

So file that tid-bit away in your D-I-Y-thought-to-remember-file, and check back in later this week to see what else we're up to... We're down to the wire here folks, 2 weeks and counting until the baby is slated to arrive, so we're going to keep on plugging on our project list until we head off to the hospital! : ) 

Have a terrific weekend! 


  1. Love that hallway color you chose.

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