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March 11, 2011

The First Steps to Building a Whole House Palette

Lucianna Samu

It's a rare day when we can take a "last things first" approach to the making of a home.  It even sounds peculiar doesn't it?  Well, that's just what I'm planning to do, beginning today.  No more disclaimers for the lack of color or absence of faux finishes in my house!  Finally, the down and dirty painting story of my house, can be re-written and I'm anxious to replace the "let's hurry-up and just call it done" chapter with a suitably grand renovation epilogue.  I'm especially delighted to begin this transformation knowing that all of you will be here to follow my progress!

Lusamu_restoration_livingroom

I'm going to begin in the foyer.  More than a place to make a big design announcement, the entry in any house takes a beating.  Mine is no exception.  My hand painted "faux wallpaper" is still looking swell.  But the gi-normous gaps in the trim, make the professional painter in me want to scream, while the scratched and nicked glazed walls below bring the faux finisher in me to tears.  I love a swanky entry--I'm a front door kind of gal.  And even if I weren't, I believe my guests deserve the very best 'hello' I can possibly give them.

Lusamu_restoration_foyer

The next area of the house I plan to re-visit is the hall between the kitchen and the living room.  This area measures 9' x 11'-6", a center hall actually, although I'm often told it's nearly the size of a Manhattan studio apartment.  I've got big plans for this central location, and I can't wait to show all of you not only how to create an entire room with a can of paint, but also how diminutive transitional spaces are always willing to tolerate a great deal of receding color. 

Lusamu_restoration_kitchen1

Lusamu_restoration_kitchen2

The kitchen will be next.  My tile guys escaped before I settled on a backsplash and this unfinished area is a blight on my delightful kitchen.  Magnified by the lovely under-counter halogen wash lights, it's a costly tile install in the making so I have other plans!  A budget friendly and color-laden solution will add pattern, rhythm, and color.  Voila!

Lusamu_restoration_kitchen3

Across to the other side of my kitchen, somewhat hidden behind the island, sits the one and only over- the-top color decision I made for the house: my Blue Star range.  I had it custom painted to match Benjamin Moore's August Morning (2156-40), and I LOVE IT.  The open floor plan of the house will also need to welcome this color.  Hmm, kind of an "August Morning" everywhere downstairs; that's fine with me--it's one of my favorite colors.

Lusamu_restoration_kitchenrange

  Lusamu_dollops1

Good, bad or otherwise, you may have a similar color quandary.  When we can't justify eliminating costly or precious color features--such as a floor, or a counter top, or possibly even some well-loved furniture--it's time for a "color compromise."  But fear not.  I'll show you how to expand your color boundaries.  Once I get my palette settled, my beloved August Morning will lend an element of surprise and edginess to the whole house.  You'll see, colors we feel passionately about can always be cajoled, and made to settle quietly, into our homes.

Lusamu_restoration_swatches

Lusamu_dollops2

I'm planning a palette that's very expressive--I want to respect my weakness for hot pink, orange, lime green, and purple--I know, it sounds extreme.  But tweaking architectural elements with bold color statements is my specialty.  I'm equally adept at exploiting perceived anomalies in a room, and my very sunny living room is just the place for such flights of fancy.  It's all going to be a breeze for me now, since I know where the sun shines in the morning, and where to find the moon at night.  Next time, I'll show you how the dream of living with boisterous Exotic Red (2086-10), tranquil Silver Pine (AC-21), or sophisticated Moonlight White (2143-60), can come true when you're willing to put your color planning and painting, first. :)

Stay colorful,
Lu

faux finishes

Blue Star

Benjamin Moore colors:

August Morning (2156-40)

Exotic Red (2086-10)

Moonlight White (2143-60)

Silver Pine (AC-21)

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I can't wait to start seeing some color on the walls myself-won't be long now!

I cannot WAIT to see all of this unfold. I'm on the edge of my seat. So exciting!!!

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