Monday, November 8, 2010

Gray (or Something Like It)

I admit it: everything takes me forever.  I have been in my house for three years and still haven't put up curtains in our family room.  I am still using end tables I "borrowed" from my mother.  And I am still mulling over the paint color.  Oh, the paint color.

Sadly, this is not my house.  Click here to see more of it.

For about a year after we moved in I was totally fine with our gray walls.  Gray is *everywhere* in our house--the entire family room, up the stairs, the entire upstairs hallway.  You simply can't look anywhere without seeing it.  Well, after about a year, I was D-O-N-E.

Don't get me wrong, I don't have a problem with gray generally, not even gray walls.  In High School I even designed an all-gray house in my interior design class, which clearly proves that I am a prescient genius when it comes to color trends.  I am absolutely thrilled to my core that people are using more gray.  But like any color, it has a million different personalities depending on the room it's in, the shade of gray, the light, the other elements of the room, and a bazillion other factors.  It can be dark and moody or light and airy, or even earthy.

Or, as in my house, gray can have all the personality of a cinder-block prison cell.  This particular color makes me feel like I live in Arkham Asylum.  I must change it.  I just need to find the perfect beige and start painting.  Easy breezy.  Except I cannot find the perfect beige, and after weeks (okay, months) of looking at patchwork walls I am really getting tired of this process.  I have tried no fewer than 15 colors.  But everything I try is too light...too dark...too pink..too yellow...too gray...sigh.  Am I just super picky?

Have your walls ever looked like this?  For six months?
Oh...well, guess it's just me then.

The good news: I think I finally found the color.  This room has been my inspiration for the last two years:

Photo: Rachel Reider Interiors

Out of sheer desperation I finally emailed the very talented woman who designed this room, Rachel Reider, who was kind enough to write me back and share the color she used: Pismo Dunes by Benjamin Moore.  You likey?  I am running out right now to get a sample.  Cross your fingers for me and hope it looks as good in my room as it does in hers.  Now, all I need is three more years and maybe I will get around to hanging some curtains.


  1. Good luck!! That does look like a great beige. Our living room beige is croissant by Sherwin Williams and I love it, but it is quite a bit lighter than the one in your inspiration room. I love the table and chairs in your inspiration room too!

  2. You will find the perfect color! Let me know what you think of Bleeker Beige when you get it! By the way, we've had our paint sample on our wall for 6 months in our kitchen, as you know, and haven't gotten around to painting it yet!!!


  3. OMG one of the most humbling experiences of my life as a daughter-in-law... choosing the paint for MY mother-in-law's bedroom when we built this house. She wanted EVERYTHING to be white and I put my daughter-in-law foot down over that, insisting that we do a "taupe" in her bedroom. I chose the color and had the contractor apply the paint and then gasped in horror when I saw it... a dark charcoal gray that even I, a modernista, could not abide with. My mother-in-law called me on my cell phone about the same time that I was viewing my gross faux pas. She couldn't have been more diplomatic, even when I deserved an "I-TOLD-YA-SO" and I switched the color and ate the extra expense asap. Gotta love Granny!


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