Sunday, March 10, 2013

Finding the Perfect Gray: Walls and Interior Doors

 I hope you aren't tired of my paint and powder room adventures.
Before you run away, wait! The saga has almost reached a happy ending! (Though another saga has begun.)

I've posted about the powder room HERE and HERE (scroll to the bottom).
Originally, it was a tad colorless.

Bandwidth painted a large swatch of SW Urbane Bronze.
You can catch up on that adventure HERE.
It was pretty. But the room is tiny, and threatened to become a black hole. So, Bandy painted a swatch of SW Intellectual Gray.
It looked perfect.

The mirror came down, and the walls were painted.
I was surprised when Intellectual Gray turned muddy gold in photographs. In person it was a dark, dark gray.
Shocking, isn't it? 
I knew about the brown tones in the Shoji White paint strip. But still! Nevertheless, I decided to go a shade lighter: Amazing Gray. But it looked totally white.

Using RIBBET (it's a free photo tool that replaced Flickr's Picnic), I lightened the walls. But I lightened them too much.

More frantic tinkering.
 I took a wild leap of faith and painted the room Amazing Gray.
Here is an unedited photo:

And another.

In this small, poorly lit space, the Amazing Gray was darker, but not too dark. I was relieved! My powder room paint saga has ended, thank goodness. The trim works, so it won't need repainting.
However, another issue surfaced. Last week, Will walked into the foyer and squinted. "Is the room STAYING this white?" he asked. Then he sighed in a "no likey" way. :-)
I'd been thinking the same thing,
but I'd only told my mother. She'd promised not to tell.

Art and furnishings will make a difference in the foyer (and everywhere else). But will it be enough to remove the white-on-white chill?
I have been going back and forth about painting the interior doors a dark gray/lighter gray, so I suggested that we paint Urbane Bronze on this door.
Will said he thought it would be too dark, but we'll try it anyway.
Then we'll compare it to the Intellectual Gray on another door:

We have a few options.

Light gray trim.
Charcoal-gray trim:  

And, of course, there's always classic black.

Have you painted interior doors?
Are you thinking about it?

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  1. ML, I like the way the powder room looks with the Amazing Gray walls and white trim. As for painted interior doors, we've not ventured in that direction in our current home. In our previous home, we painted the woodwork in the master a dark chocolate brown. I know we painted the closet doors the dark brown, but don't recall if we painted the interior bedroom door brown or left it white. That said, I like the inspiration photos. Our sunporch is painted in dark forest green which gives a similar look as in the Charleston image. I like the contrast of dark and light.
    Good luck. Thanks for sharing the process. I'm learning with each new post. '-)

    1. I'm happy with Amazing Gray--and relieved that the trim won't need painting. I won't paint the trim over the door in the foyer, just the door. I'll post a photo. Thank you so much for visiting! Your comments always uplift me!

  2. I love the color of the powder room. I like the mirror too....Christine

    1. I was thinking about you the other day, Christine! So glad to see you!

  3. My goodness, what an adventure with paint! No, we don't paint interior doors since they are still a wood finish in this 100+ year old house. We have had some of them refinished. It all looks beautiful.

    1. Seven years ago, we lived in a "four square," and previous renovators had painted all of the gorgeous woodwork, except for the front staircase rail. I know you treasure your beautiful doors!

  4. I have not painted interior doors, but I have a friend who painted a few chartreuse and it so works in her house! I have painted cabinets numerous times, and I just painted our kitchen island a pale ballet slipper pink from Benjamin Moore. I love white walls....almost every wall in our home is either Benjamin Moore Super White or Mayonnaise.

    I love the gray in your powder room. Powder rooms should be dramatic!

    1. I am so happy to find another white wall lover! That said, chartreuse doors would be so cool! (I love red doors, too. And turquoise and green, so I made a Pinterest board just for doors. :-) I'm going to look up Ben Moore Super White and Mayonnaise. I am looking for a white exterior trim. I used BM Dove on one section before winter began, and now I've got 3 different whites going on (dormers and railing haven't been painted and are VERY white, but I like it againt the painted brick).

  5. I have gray in my bathroom too but there is lots of light in there. Still, I had a difficult time! Gray is not easy....I think this one look perfect!

    1. I agree--gray can be tricky. All of those undertones!

  6. For years in Army quarters we had white walls. In our bathrooms that worked but I was always so happy to be in homes where I could chose my own colors. All our trim is Behr Swiss Coffee in and out of our 200 year plus old house. I am looking for a pale grey for our upstairs bath. Thanks for posting some options.

  7. Greetings ML~ ~
    I love your bathroom and knew your inspiration would lead you to the perfect color. Thank goodness you don't have to paint the trim! In our home all the woodwork is stained dark for a victorian look, panaled doors too. Dark stain seems to be popular in this area of the country. People love it but I am hankering for some white. The charcoal gray and white is stunning and dramatic. Will be fun to see what you choose.
    ~ ~Ahrisha~ ~

    1. I'm a little nervous about the doors. The bathroom was much easier. :-0

    2. And yet...the bathroom was a big, fat challenge! Paint is rarely easy, is it?

  8. I never thought about it at all...mine are all white to match the woodwork and crown molding, but why not? Our front door is the only one we have painted a color and I'm ready for a change on that one, but then we have to paint the shutters too. Maybe a summer project.

  9. Okay. I think you need to switch to wallpaper! LOL

  10. First of all, we will never tire of the bathroom saga - It's fascinating, and lots of fun when you don't actually have to do it - we can just give advice !! Secondly - I am in the process right now of painting 3 of my interior doors black ! All of my interior doors have been bright white up until now - as of 1 hour ago the inside of the front door, the inside of the back door, and a door in my kitchen that leads down to the basement are now black - and they look absolutely beautiful ! My painter is using Sherwin Williams oil based Tricorn black.....I love it and highly recommend doing it !!