Month: January 2014

Working With That Bossy Bath Fixture

January 30, 2014


Can you pick out which item is the ‘bossy’ one in the room? This ‘custom designed’ bath was very popular in the 90’s. This color was very common. Why is the tub considered bossy? Because it is so large in the room you can not overlook it and the color is so bold:


Can you see all the pink undertones in the tub color? The tub color is not what is wrong in this room, it is the yellow wall paint with the pink tub that is not working together:


Thankfully the wall tile also has the pink undertones so it is playing well with the tub. The toilet and sink are also this taupe color:

The homeowner does not want to get rid of the tub, but does want to replace the toilet and sink which is a good start.

So the tub is staying and we must work with it because it has such a demanding presence in the room. The tile floor is also staying:


Which is obviously filled with pink undertones. So, what can you change to make the room look beautiful? Why paint of course!


A couple good color choice for the walls here would be Benjamin Moore Shaker Beige HC-45 or Benjamin Moore Cedar Key 982. They are a safe color choice, they both will blend with the tub,  the room will look more cohesive and either choice would look beautiful.

Another option you might want to look at is the color in the tile:


I see a lot of gray color. Gray is a great neutral so that would be a good color choice to look at. To pull the gray out of the tile even more, I would use a stronger shade of gray such as Ben Moore Rockport Gray HC- 105 or Boothbay Gray HC-165. There is also white in the tile, but I think a white would look too pale in the room and to me, make the tub stand out even more.


Do you have a bathtub or other bossy piece in your home that has prevented you from redoing the room? Always work with it, not against it, (and do not ignore it) or it may stand out even more. A fresh coat of the right paint color will help update the room quickly and inexpensively. The magic of paint!

If you need help selecting paint colors for your home, contact me today.

Agree or Disagree to Paint Mantel?

January 25, 2014

[pinterest]Our living room with french accents 1-2014 005

A big shout out to my decorator friend Connie, for graciously volunteering to be our first subject authorized decorating project. She has even provided great photos to share.

Here is her story:

Hi Kelly,

I have a dilemma 😉

I have a faux fireplace in our living room(actually it does burn gel canisters). I like the wood (I think it’s Brazilian pine like the armoire we have in our family room) BUT I’m wondering if its wood tone looks out of place in the room:

Our living room with french accents 1-2014 006

There are no other wood tones items in the room, either in the seating side where the fireplace is, or the opposite side of the room where the black grand piano is. Also, because the LR opens to the upper level, everything should flow nicely. No wood tone there either:

Our living room with french accents 1-2014 001

I’m kinda thinking the fireplace is the sore thumb and I’ve pondered over and over (and over!) about painting it. Of course, the next question is “ Should I paint it white like the trim or use a faux finish to age it like my end tables?”:

end table 'after'

As a decorator myself, we do from time to time, have our own unsolved dilemmas ;).  Thank you Kelly!

What a beautiful room. It looks so comfortable (and so French!) Wonderful job decorating Connie. I think the fireplace wood mantel is very pretty and I would also hesitate to paint over. BUT as you stated, there are no other wood toned items in the room. For your first question wondering if the mantel looks out of place in this room, I would have to say yes. Your eye is immediately drawn to it because it is so bossy and different from anything else you see in the room. If this is your taste and style living room, I think painting the fireplace will work into your color and decorating design better:

Our living room with french accents 1-2014 006

If you look at the pictures you sent me, especially of the two inspirational photos you love:

french living room 1


Gustavian room 1


You will notice that they both have white mantels in a white room. I think you already knew the answer to that dilemma. Yes, it should be painted to work with the rest of the room.

Your next question regarding if you should paint it white or faux finish like your end tables, I vote for the white. Your sofa, lampshades, pillows and even your paint color looks ‘clean’, where the end tables:

end table 'after'

Have more of a ‘dirty/beige’ color. Do you see what I mean? I think they work in your room for contrast but for not for such a big piece such as the mantel.

What is the color of your trim Connie? Is it the same white you used for the staircase spindles? If so, I would paint the mantel the same to tie it all in together.

Thank you Connie for sharing!

Agree or Disagree everyone?

If you need advice on paint colors for your home, contact me today.

Pottery Barn’s Spring/Summer 2014 Color Palette

January 23, 2014



This post is for those of you that love looking at photos of Pottery Barn rooms that are painted in special colors for the Season. In previous years, Benjamin Moore colors were highlighted with Pottery Barn merchandise. I am not sure what happened, but Sherwin Williams is Pottery Barn’s new paint partner in creating seasonal coordinated rooms. Let’s see what you think of the colors:

SW 6244 Naval & SW 7566 Westhighland White:



Cupola Yellow SW 7692:



Distance SW 6243:



So pretty! SW used a painting technique called Striae Quartz Stone technique with the color Distance to achieve this look.

Westhighland White SW 7566:



Latte SW 6108:



And beautiful Naval SW 6244:



Extra White SW 7006:

extra white


A modern, clean, blue undertoned white.

Virtual Taupe SW 7039:

virtual taupe


Another pretty beige with red undertones.

Here are a few of the 2014 colors not featured with Pottery Barn furnishings but I wanted to you to see:

Swelte Sage SW 6164:



A beautiful green, don’t you agree? Swelte Sage would work well with stained trim and also oak cabinets.

Burlap SW 6137:

sw burlap


A nice beige but be aware of the green undertones.

Library Pewter SW 0038:

library pewter


Can you see what the undertone above is?

Best of all, Sherwin Williams is having a sale right now! Go here to receive a coupon for $15.00 off your next paint purchase over $75.00.

I hope you have enjoyed looking through the photos. Any favorites? Any inspiring colors you would like to try?

If you need help selecting paint colors for your home, contact me today.

A New Approach

January 21, 2014


I really appreciated all of your comments on my recent post ’Agree or Disagree?’ Did you know when I first had the idea of showing properties with issues that could use a little advice, I was going to call it ‘What’s Up With That?’



I tried to make it more professional sounding, hence the name ‘Agree or Disagree?’ See how much time and thought I put into this? 🙂


A few readers commented with a great idea. What if a reader sent in a picture and asked for advice? For instance, Sally is getting ready to put her home on the market and would like someone else’s opinion on what she could do in her home to make it Open House Ready.



Or maybe someone would like suggestions for a new front door color.


I think this is an improved idea for teaching and advice. So, if you have a design or color question that you would love to hear suggestions and feedback to share on my blog, send me an email and we will see how it goes!

Thanks everyone!

If you need help with your space, contact me today.

Agree or Disagree?

January 18, 2014


I have been receiving quite a few letters wondering why I have not written my “Agree or Disagree?” posts lately. I thought I would explain to everyone why I decided not to write anymore.


I had originally thought I would post pictures and point out items that could be used as a teaching technique. I did not know any of the owner’s of the photos, I just choose the photos randomly.


Well, I received a letter written by a reader that stated that more or less that I was not being kind and was sounding like a bully. That comment really bothered me. I know it probably should not, but it does.


Then I started second guessing what I was writing and worried that I was offending someone. So I decided to stop writing “Agree or Disagree’ all together. And that is my story. I apologize if I have upset anyone, that certainly was not my intention.

Agree or Disagree?

Sneak Peek At My New Condo

January 16, 2014


I thought I would share a little preview of the new condo we moved into last month. Things were a little crazy with the Holiday’s and moving, but I wanted to get started on the place so we can relax. You might remember what I looked like when we first moved in:


I  used most what I already owned such as this couch:


It really did not look good with the white walls, so I bought a TJ Maxx king-sized, micromink blanket to disguise it:


I did buy that fantastic mirror from Joss & Main and also the rug. Both incredible values for the total price of under $350.00.




I still have a few accessories I would like to get. Plus, my by-the-side-of-the-road chairs I found are being upholstered. I will post a few pictures when they are finished.

What do you think? It is now a room I walk into and smile.

If you would like help decorating your space, contact me today.