Friday, April 3, 2009

Colour angst

This house was previously owned by a couple from Mexico and the rooms were painted bright Mexican colours: vivid yellow, deep red, blue and strong green. This was part of its appeal--at first. But pretty quickly we found the intense colours overpowering, especially in this grey climate. 

The screaming yellow bedroom and deep red hallway got painted two years ago so that I would be able to sleep, but the rest had to wait. Last summer I tackled the living room, which was also Mexican yellow and it looked kind of charming for a while.

But I chose a toned down greyed golden beige called "Dunmore Cream" that makes the room more restful. I think.

I find wall colour choices extremely stressful. I'm always trying to find a colour that will make a statement (whatever that is) and that will make the room look beautiful so I can live happily with it for a decent length of time. When I was in my 20s we automatically painted every room pure white and put up lots of posters and big bold paintings. Then I went into a soft tan period, then pinks and greys, followed by the bright saturated colours. Now it seems I'm back to beiges. How is it that we change our tastes? Are we so manipulated by the magazines?

In the past I have painted rooms several times over to achieve the colour I had in mind. Sometimes I'm seduced the name of the colour, only to find when I put it on the wall that I hate it.

My project yesterday was to paint the blue room. It was an extremely vivid blue...


And I chose (after much deliberation) a colour with the boring name of Grant Beige that I hoped would look good against the wood floor and closet doors. One thing for sure, it makes the room seem twice a big. But is it boring? Does it make a statement about me?

Oh, for heaven's sake--it's just the spare room.

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