Thursday, February 12, 2015

Paint Is a Many-Splendored Thing

Stained wood trim is a wiley beast. It turns out you cannot use the same paint in your white-trimmed townhouse in your wood-trimmed farmhouse no matter how much you love the hue.  It is just not the same animal.

In my (limited) experience, white trim is far more forgiving.  Wood trim stained in cherry like ours, is orange tinted.  Put that orange next to the beautiful golds and tans I had in the other house and you have the equivalent of mustard and cheese next to each other on a hamburger bun. Not pretty.

Our old bedroom was painted in Sherwin-Williams Anjou Pear.  It was pretty much my favorite paint color and I recommended it to everyone.  

See that orange chest on tall dresser?  Imagine that is the wood trim all along the floors and ceilings with that paint color.  


Throw in brick floors, and you're left with one viable option: cool neutrals.

This has meant a lot of research and a lot of paint samples on the walls.  Not a single wall in our house is free from a paint sample right now.  Matt asked me if I am immune to it and now think it's art.  Not a bad idea.  Maybe use throw some empty frames up there...

The top contender for the primary color in our house right now is Sherwin Williams Worldly Gray.

I went to Sherwin Williams and told the sale's associate, "I'm looking for Amazing Gray?"

He sighed and said "Everyone is looking for Amazing Gray."

That was enough to make me reconsider.  I don't want to be like everyone!  But I'd done a lot of research online and had a good feeling about this one.

He said "I'll be so glad when this gray phase is over.  Everyone wants a true gray, but true gray doesn't exist."

Ok, so I'm not like everyone.  I already know this because I have wood trim and spent hours on the internet.

I said "I know the internet isn't always right."

He interrupted me "It's never right."

I promise not to blame you, Sherwin-William's man, if this doesn't work.  But I really think this is the color family for me.

Wordly Gray is one color down the paint chip from Amazing Gray.  

See how the gray looks pretty, well, gray up there?

Look at it here with the wood trim:

Next to the cherry stain, it suddenly looks less gray and looks a little more taupe.  

This is pretty obvious, but it had me flummoxed for weeks.  I could not figure out why the colors I loved so much looked so green-tinted and pukey on the walls of our new house. 

I'm very excited to paint a full wall with this stuff and see how it works.  Anything to go from 1970 to French countryside.

Maybe one day our grandchildren will be talking about going from French countryside to 1970.  Go for it!

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