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The Lost Art of Colour Coordinating

Your home is your sanctuary. Ours is filled with kids, pets and frequent guests, but it’s a sanctuary nonetheless. A lot of that has to do with the special items we surround ourselves with - each carefully chosen for form and function. This also includes the paint we use because we want the walls in our home to stand up to the wear and tear of daily life but also to express our personal style. Often times, the high traffic areas in our home such as the mudroom and kitchen are the ones most visible. These spaces need to be functional, but you want them to look great, too. As a contractor and a father, my husband, Bryan, is careful to ensure we choose a durable paint that stays vibrant, even after multiple scrubbings. I like to take colour into consideration too, because colour is key to setting the mood in a room.


Paint has the power to quickly transform any space. For example, a fast and affordable way to update your kitchen is to simply paint (or repaint) the cabinets. Choose white or off-white so they never look outdated and use an accent colour on built-in cabinetry for a pop of colour. As someone who generally favours lighter, more neutral colours like white and grey, I appreciate the impact of using brighter accent colours for an interesting, dramatic effect. Never be afraid to go big with colours. You can paint a separate alcove or pantry in a dramatic dark shade or even paint your base cabinets a darker shade to contrast with the upper ones.

Shelves and accessories are another good place to experiment with bold colours. Painting the inside back wall of built-in shelves has a very dramatic effect, making the items on it really stand out. Painting old wood chairs and stools is another great idea. It can help pull a room together and give it some colour. (Painted furniture is another place to try incorporating bolder colours that you find too overwhelming for a wall.)

winning combination 

Selecting colours for your home can be as simple as picking up a colour palette from your local paint retailer or hardware store. I love the variety and selection offered in the colour collections offered by HGTV HOME by Sherwin-Williams. Once you have selected your base colours such as white for trim and beige or grey for the walls, select a contrasting combination. For example, choose a bright green and pair with a crisp coral or go for a denim blue with a classic yellow. Finally, select a darker shade for hardware, lighting and smaller accents – you can use black, brown, navy or even a metallic shade.

There’s one final consideration before you start tackling your room makeover: be sure to think about the surrounding spaces.Do you live in an open concept home? Can you easily see into your dining or living room? When picking new paint colours, remember that the style and mood of the room you’re working on should complement the rest of your home. Try not to think about that space individually. Instead, consider how it will contribute to making your home into a sanctuary, where colour and mood flows harmoniously from one room to another.

Design Tip: A great way to experiment with bold colour is to try it in a small area like a powder room. Avoid cool shades and go for warm ones, which will flatter skin tones when looking in the mirror!

Room Colours:

Walls – Accessible Beige

Cabinets – Marshmallow and Functional Grey

Trim – Marshmallow

Accents – Parakeet, Coral Reef and Black Fox