Monday, May 6, 2013

The Trials and Tribulations of Paint - But What a Difference it Makes!

Our open floor plan is all painted! doesn't seem like painting should be so hard.  Pick a color, slap it up on the wall, & done!  Right?  Well, it's not quite that easy.

Challenge 1:  Picking the paint palette.  With the fabrics, carpeting and artwork as our guide, we picked one color for the main living area, another for the bedrooms and a 3rd for the hallway bathroom.  Because this house is going on the market, we wanted something neutral, but with enough color so the beautiful new moldings we've installed will 'pop'!

Sherwin Williams 'Rice Grain'
The bedrooms are going to be painted a Sherwin Williams color called Rice Grain.  It's a creamy beige, with a lot of warmth.  The perfect backdrop for all our furnishings.

The main living space, however, was supposed to be Sherwin Williams Softer Tan.  It looked great on the paint chip, great with the cream colored cabinets and all our fabric choices.   But, when we painted the test sample in the kitchen next to our new cabinets, it just looked drab and muddy ( Of course, that's why we always buy a sample to try in our lighting, on our walls!)  So, back to the drawing board.

Several years ago, we lived in a house with walls painted a beautiful soft green/gray/beige.  I know, it seems odd to call it three colors at once, but as the light shifted in the room, the color constantly seemed to change.  I LOVED the color, but it didn't match any color chips on my pile of paint decks and we never learned what the color was.  But, when we did some remodeling, I kept a piece of painted drywall, because I knew I wanted to use the color again.

Fast forward several years and I whipped out my tired piece of drywall and took it to my friends at Sherwin Williams.  They mixed it up for me and I named it 'Cream of Celery Soup' (does anyone still eat Cream of Celery Soup anymore?  My mother always used it to make casseroles when I was growing up!  Hmmm.....does anyone even make casseroles anymore?).

I put up the sample and it looked beautiful!!!  With the same color shifting qualities I remembered from our old house.  And a nice neutral backdrop for everything else.  Hooray - we're ready for the painters!

Challenge 2:  Color Consistency.   The folks from Backman Painting got right to work priming the walls and ceilings.  Next, they did a fantastic job spraying all the doors and molding to create a fabulous, flawless finish.  Remember our nice new fireplace surround and mantle?  What do you think, now that it's all caulked and painted.  Isn't it beautiful?

Next step was the wall color.  The Rice Grain color in the bedrooms looks beautiful.
Master Bedroom - front view

Master Suite
Repainting the Stairwell
But I couldn't wait for them to start the Cream of Celery Soup.  I left the house for a meeting, just as they were starting.  When I got back a couple of hours later, imagine my surprise to find a very dark hallway.  Somehow, my light, bright Cream of Celery paint had morphed into a much deeper shade.  Yikes, the paint store sent the wrong color!  Now the guys had to repaint - and of course they had done the trickiest part, the stairwell walls.  But first, a trip back to the paint store, to get the right color.

They quickly finished the rest of the space and all the details (and enjoyed a little bit of our nice spring weather!).

The Result:  Beautiful!  With the right paint, the rooms have really come together and the paint now highlights the molding, antique beams, cabinets and trim throughout the house.

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  1. The house is coming together! This is the part I really enjoy. I love the fluff!!

  2. Would you be willing to share the formula for this color? I know how hard it is to get subtle right. Thanks!

    1. Absolutely - I'll call the paint store next week and see what the final formula was. With the mis-tints, I want to make sure I give you the right color. It is a wonderful color!


    2. Were you able to get the formula? I would love it also. Thanks.

    3. Yes, at long last I got the formula. It's Sherwin Williams Flat, Extra white Base. The colorants are:
      Black 6/32
      Maroon 2/32
      Yellow 21/32 + 1/128
      Green 1/64

      And I've nicked named it Cream of Celery soup!


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