Emma contacted MadAboutTheHouse to ask about paint colours for her teenage daughter’s bedroom.Q: My daughter would like her bedroom painted grey and white. It’s a bright, south-facing room with a black cast iron fireplace, with alcoves either side, and oak floors. One of the alcoves will have a white wardrobe in it. I think we will probably do one grey wall but I can’t decide which one, or how dark the grey should be.
A: Grey is massively fashionable in interiors at the moment and isn’t anything like as cold and austere as you might think. It has, in some quarters, been referred to as the new magnolia as it is the perfect neutral colour, goes with everything and looks really modern. But before we start looking specific colours, here are some pictures of rooms done in varying shades of grey to get you in the mood.
It can be very difficult to accurately represent colours on the computer so the best solution is for me to point you in the direction of some good paint companies and for you to buy some samples. You really can’t skip this step as grey can be either yellow or blue based and you need to find the right one for you. Remember it will be darker in the corners so try and paint a sample of both sides of a corner to see how it will absorb the light. And if you choose Farrow and Ball, many people say the key to choosing the right shade is to find the one you really like and then buy a shade lighter. Here are some examples:
First of all, if you aren’t sure which wall to do, there are plenty of combinations that can work. You could paint the back of both alcoves in quite a dark grey, such as Farrow and Ball’s Downpipe, which is a charcoal shade. Alternatively, you could do the chimney breast in the dark colour and the alcoves in a paler shade. There is no reason why you have to stick to one shade of grey and white. You can have two greys and one contrasting colour. Wimborne White is a lovely chalky shade of white that contrasts well with grey. A couple of other lovely greys are Elephant’s Breath and Lamp Room Grey. Cornforth White is also a pale grey, despite its name. Zoffany also make great flat chalky paints. I’m a fan of both Storm and Glacier but there are several shades in between that might appeal. Finally, you will probably need to add some other splashes of colour as finishing touches. Personally I would stick to plain blinds to keep the monochrome look, but think about a contrasting bedspread in shocking pink, lime green, burnt orange or turquoise depending on your daughter’s taste. All those elements are easy to change if she becomes bored with the colour scheme while leaving the main colours in place. Or you could, if you really wanted to go for it, paint the fireplace. I did the chimney breast in our spareroom in Downpipe and the fire surround in shocking pink.
This is a picture of The Little Green Company – Ultimate Matt ‘Metal 4′ that Gail has used in her kitchen:
For more posts on paint