Friday, July 30, 2010

mistakes have been made, but good news of a new magazine

Remember when i decided to paint my wall turquoise? (i understand if you've blocked it out, i wish i had). Well we (in television, that's right i'm in television now, need proof?  sunday at 7pm HGTV) have a word for that - or an anagram, called PDSS - Post Design Star Syndrome (its a rare and non-terminal syndrome, could result in fame or a boost in ones career and possibly a lot of temporary fast design decision making).  i suffered badly from the last symptom when i returned - although now i'm suffering from the 2nd one (boost, not fame, please), which is awesome. 

When I got back from filming I had a bit of designing-for-a-competition hysteria and i needed "BIG BOLD COLORS" and I needed them NOW. (picture me enunciating the 'B's really loud, blinking my eyes really hard and flashing jazz hands while i say that).  So I woke up one morning (at like 6, btdubs) and went to the paint store, waited for it to open like a crazed 'one day sale' at Macy's shopper the day after Thanksgiving - NO- the midnight before the day after thanksgiving, re-enacting the 'open open open' commercials from the 90's, and bought a gallon of BM Caribbean Azure and painted it that day.  


I loved it for like 3 hours, and i have been living with it ever since.  I hate it.  really hate it.  There are a few things wrong - the color is too turquoise and not enough peacock blue.  It's too bright, too bold for me.  I could handle it at a restaurant, in a hotel room, in a hallway, or at my beach house in Mexico (cut to my british accent: oh i do need to visit soon, its been just way too long).  But I can't live with it in my 1 bedroom apartment in Silverlake that doesn't get enough light.  

Yes, its the color above, styled for a test shot, taken by Terilyn Fisher).

It is actually making me angry.
Don't get me wrong I love turquoise, but its in the wrong place, mixed with the wrong things and in order for me to truly make it work it would take more time, effort and money than just painting over it.  

So that is what is about to happen.

 I have a shoot here next week for the new and potentially extremely fabulous  RUE Magazine -  that's right MAG-AZ-INE - i know, that word sounds familiar and i get strangely nostalgic saying it, its been a while since i heard that a 'new' one was coming out.  Check this out: I heard an old wives tale that we used to have shelter (home design) magazines sent to us in the mail! can you even imagine! magazines with pretty photographs of aspirational homes for us to flip through actually came out monthly and we could buy them for almost nothing! (which, HELLO, clearly might have been the problem, i didn't go to business school, but should great things that cost a lot of money to make be virtually given away for free??  seriously???)  
ANYHOO.  Well now they are back, just on-line.  Adapt we will.
And i'm gonna be in it.  
It's gonna be a party, and I love to party.

Back to my paint problem:
I have the rest of the apartment in BM november rain, which I loved, but I want something cooler right now.  

Point is:
I need light grey paint color recommendations.

I want it to be fairly color-less - no hints of green, purple or brown, it could go more blue if it has to.  Just picture the perfect gray (reminds me of one of my favorite blogs, 'a perfect gray' perhaps she also was in search of this perfect, yet elusive color).   I want it to be as if pure black was mixed with pure white.  But fairly light.  Maybe even just a tone.

Your challenge begins today, and you have until tomorrow.  Don't let me down, people.


  1. Funny, I'm painting a color on my walls that I'm not crazy about right in: there is still paint drying on my hands as I type. Anyhoo, I might be glazing over my "drying-too-peachy-for-my-sanity" 700+ sq. ft. of my house at some point. Wow, ok, MAIN POINT: I did just finish my daughter's room in BM Gray Owl and it is FABULOUS. I can e-mail you pictures if you like...I haven't blogged it yet since I'm waiting on artwork ideas to "come to me".

  2. Hi ya. For the record I'm the suckiest commentor EVER. (I blame it on Google Reader and my husband.)

    LOVE the idea of the turquoise walls and absolutely could not live with it.

    I painted my bedroom a gray 3 years ago (b/c YEAH, I saw THAT trend coming a mile away!) And while I like, I don't recommend the color...too tan, a shade too dark for a bedroom if you like light and airy.

    BTW, THANK YOU for linking up Dan's blog. LOVE IT. And LOVED the backstory on catalog shoots. I now have to de-pottery barn my living room.

    Yup...random and too much. Thats me. Off to shove my nose in my behr paint deck.

  3. beachcottagemamato2July 30, 2010 at 10:16 AM

    I had a hard time with this one as well. Struggled to find the right light gray without other colorways conflicting. However, I just finished painting my living room a very wonderfully refreshing shade of Valspar Fragile Blue. I love it and love that it lets my white, turquoise/aqua, and pink/red fabrics and accessories pop while being gray. Good luck to you and I really hope you get your own show! I would look forward to HGTV again.

  4. How fun for you! Been hearing/reading great things are Rue already. And now you're gonna be in it, very cool. Wish I could help with your light gray challenge but when I did it I hated it and went for dark gray instead which I have to say I love.

  5. Ok, I feel like I'm going all Nina and not following the explicit instructions, BUT my favorite grey that I love with my whole being is Behr Granite Boulder. It's definitely a warmer grey (not exactly black plus white), but it makes me love my kitchen, and I am not so much a kitchen person. We also liked Dolphin Fin (I think Behr also) when we were deciding and I think I remember that being less yellow-ish.

  6. Ahhhh, babe. If I only had the answer to this question. But, then.....I wouldn't have my blog, would I? I did a post a little while back titled 'Gimme Your Grays' and I got lots of good suggestions. You might want to check that out. Good luck and you are HEREBY ORDERED FORTHWITH to tell us what you chose.

    Thank you for the lovely compliment. If you will also mention my blog in RUE there'd be a handsome cash payment awaiting you....

  7. 2 Faves from Benny Moore, both successful in sunny LA with not enough windows.

    OC52 Grey Owl
    OC55 Paperwhite This is my favorite, a wisp of pigment, but enough to contrast with white.

    Looking forward to photo updates,

  8. I haven't experimented with grey in my house (I seem stuck on light blue everywhere, meh) but here are some recommendations on this blog:

    This designer seems to be doing well for herself overseas, so I would trust her opinion! Good luck :)

  9. I posted my response on a perfect gray when she asked for suggestions, but I love my bedroom now that I painted it Martha Stewart (curse you, Martha, and your perfect colors...) Heavy Goose. It did everything I wanted it to and we're still madly in love.

  10. Oh, I LOVE reading your blog!!! Your description of needing color NOW and waiting for the paint store to open makes my heart sing! A kindred spirit!
    AND I love turquoise. Had it in the dining room for about 2 weeks and it just wasn't right. Needs to be more subdued.
    Have been playing with a warm grey for kitchen.....still playing :-) Will try some of the suggestions mentioned in the comments here.
    THANK YOU!!!!!

    There is a theme involves the never ending search for the perfect color combo. Some people read while waiting in line. I can play with my Ben Moore paint fan and be occupied for HOURS. It's an illness!!!!

  11. Been thinking about paint on walls and walls. Walls are not natural. They stop your eye, they block, literally. I am not an original thinker. I'm thinking it's not the color that you couldn't take it is the entirety of that color, the whole wall. There is no dimension or variation, it too much no matter what the color is going to be. Its not just your wall its all walls.
    So what is the cure? A pattern in white alla Lonni. A faux treatment, a base board. This will sound crazy but take some of that ocean color from the map load up a brush and flick it on that turq. wall. Heavy flicking on the bottom and lighten up as you go up. I think it might work.

  12. I don't know paint colors--alas, I rent in a place that's really strict about that, and will only allow its painters to toss in a single accent wall in one of three pre-determined colors--but something misty/cloudy would be nice and cool. (Checking at, the 790E or 770E swatch.) The big green leaves would look nice against it. Something suggesting a cloudy day with a nice, damp breeze... (Forgive me, I'm stuck in the desert, and posts about gray with a faux English accent are making me long for fog and lots of it...)

  13. um...yeah...we're thinking that if you just happened to have a Dressing On The Side tshirt on for the shoot, it would make whatever gray you chose look that much better. we're sure of it.

  14. Congratulations on the Rue shoot!

    At practically this very moment, I'm painting my living room benjamin moore abalone. To me, It's the perfect light grey but it might have undertones that you wouldn't like. How about the monorail silver that is in the Sherwin Williams 2011 color forecast?

  15. Congrats!! That mag looks awesome.

    My favorite gray's:

    The perfect greige: Woodrow Wilson Putty, Valspar
    Beautiful blue/gray yet warm: Dolphin Fin, BEHR
    Another great one: Amazing Gray, SW
    A bluish gray: Passive, SW

    Haven't used but look good on the swatch:

    Quiet Moments, BM
    Coventry Gray, BM

    Good luck!

  16. Congratulations on the magazine feature! That's so exciting. I love Benjamin Moore's Dior Gray (though it may be a little dark in your place) — it should be pretty evident that I choose colors primarily for their names. I can't wait to see what you decide!

  17. How come nobody recommended Devine yet? My favorite colors... Devine Buffalo from Flora & Fauna Collection, Devine Comtesse from French Casino Collection, and Devine Silver from Silver Skies Collection. *sigh*

  18. Browse some great swedish blogs and you'll probably find your gray. It's fun. More so if your into cottage or comfortable decor with a twist.

  19. I just did my living room in Behr UL260-6 Fashion Grey (horrible name but good color) on Friday. It had a tiny bit of undertone that actually made me choose it over the straight ahead grey I saw from Martha Stewart simply called Cement. I think that could be what you're lookin' for!

  20. I painted my whole small apartment BM's sidewalk gray. I love it and get tons of compliments. A friend took the rec and it looks more blueish in her place so definitely do a test.

  21. OK This is not the perfect gray post. Just color post in general. Many times I think I have found the perfect color and when painted on the walls it reflects back on itself and makes it so much darker greener bluer grayer. YUCK.

    I discovered years ago to pick the perfect color then when having it mixed tell the mixing person to only put HALF the color to the base. I have done this with a mint green and another green and periwinkle. It turns out perfect every time. It stops the color reflection making it darker or too intense ,especially in hall ways or smaller rooms.

    I will have my paints custom mixed this way from now on.Give it a try to find the perfect elusive color.




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