White Walls Forever

White Walls Forever | matchbookmag.com | design-vox.com

White walls just do not get old. When the right decor is layered in it becomes so fresh and chic.

White Walls Forever | abkasha.com | design-vox.com

Creamy off-white has the same effect. I love this slightly minimalist collection of dishes.

White Walls Forever | brostecopenhagen.com | design-vox.com

White really is the queen of wall colors in my opinion. It can work for almost any style. It allows the furniture and accessories to do almost all the talking. It won’t clash with anything or start to feel outdated over time. I do think white works best in rooms with a fair amount of light, especially natural light. And it must be well decorated and lived-in, otherwise it can feel unfinished.

It seems most people I know think it’d be a little weird to paint a wall white, that it’s boring or a missed opportunity to use a color you like. I might have agreed several years ago but there’s just no denying that so many of the interior design shots I love feature white walls. The only white in my home currently is in the dining room, and it’s only white (very light gray really) above the chair rail. Below the chair rail is a near-black. It’s my favorite paint in the condo easily. But I do hope to try an all white room one day! Like I said earlier it doesn’t have to be a true, pure white. Take a look at any paint manufacturer’s colors and you’ll see a dizzying amount of “white” paint options to choose from!

one | Matchbook Mag via Erika Brechtel
two | A+B Kasha via dustjacket attic
threeBroste Copenhagen via Amber Interior Design

Tile Talk and Changes at My House

How are you all? Sorry I’ve been so sporadic with posting lately. There’s been a lot to distract me. Work’s been busy, I’ve been trying to teach myself to cook instead of relying on so much processed food, and my fiance Chris is moving in with me very soon (squeal). The era of living on my own is coming to an end and it’s pretty weird to try and wrap my head around that. It will be a huge adjustment for both of us, but of course it’s also very exciting.

There’s been a little bit of updating going on in my condo, but nothing really blog-worthy. I got a hand-me-down dryer from my father-in-law-to-be which is awesome since my old one was practically unusable (it liked to rip clothes). And now I’ve just ordered a shiny new dishwasher because my old one (which I’m pretty sure is original to the ’70s structure) finally kicked the bucket. I also finally painted the lower stairwell, which had been one of the few surfaces that I still hadn’t painted since I moved in. It was yellowy and covered in holes and crayon marks. Yeah. Feels so good to have it a clean light-mid gray.

So with this whole fiance and eventual husband situation I will now of course have to get any home updates okayed by him, but the good news is he doesn’t care about it all nearly as much as I do so I will still have quite a bit of creative freedom. For years we’ve been saying that Chris will need a man cave and he will get to furnish and decorate it how he chooses, while I will have pretty much free reign in the rest of the house. We’ll both have veto power though which I think is wise. :) Chris does surprise me sometimes by randomly showing interest in interior design. There’s a sofa at JCPenney that he has had his eye on for like a year now and often we’ll be at the mall and he’ll say, “Can we go see the Darrin sofa?” I got him to go into The Tile Shop and he actually had fun critiquing the displays with me.

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One thing that is definitely clear with my taste in tile is that I like it to be in the white/gray/black family. I have a very hard time with tan/brown tile. I could possibly handle a subtle creamy color but it’s not my first choice. I find beige colors in general feel outdated to me more often than not. I think too many people choose beige because they’re afraid the cooler neutrals will feel too… well, too cold. It’s good to be mindful of that possibility but honestly it’s not that big of a deal. Something as simple as warm light from a fixture can pretty much take care of that. Plop some pink flowers on your counter. Boom, warm room.

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Mmm, black ceiling how I love you. This room would feel way less cool and much too stark if the ceiling had been painted white. I’m not so much a fan of the hide rug, I just don’t like that kind of rug and it seems especially odd in a bathroom. But can we talk about those lights? Genius. This lighting scheme works particularly well because of the room’s high ceilings. The lights have a lot of empty space to occupy, whereas a room with standard 8 foot ceilings, especially a smaller room, would probably feel crowded and weird with multiple pendant lights like this.

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Gorgeous tile, but I particularly enjoy the cheerful pop of blue in the sink (that is then mirrored in the accessories), and of course the brass fish shaped faucet. That is a fish, right? Or a dolphin? Something like that, haha.

oneDonald Lococo Architects via nicety
two | via The Beautiful Soup
three | Design*Sponge

Black In The Kitchen

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A real life interior designer once told me that every room needs at least a bit of black. I believe she was entirely accurate, and some rooms will do quite well with more than just a bit. Black can be intimidating for a lot of people. Won’t it make the room too dark? Won’t it feel gloomy? Well it might, but if its use is well thought out it can be dramatic, modern, even cozy. Just like other hues, the way black feels and works in a room entirely depends on its application. If you really don’t want your room to feel dark and especially if you don’t have much natural light, of course you don’t want to paint everything black. The above kitchen uses black liberally but there’s also a lot of white, light floors, and sunlight.

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Okay yes, this is definitely more dark navy than it is black, but it gives a similar effect. Another common misconception is that dark colors simply can not work in small spaces. Again, I think the key in any size room is to make sure the darkness is not going to be overwhelming, that it’s balanced. Even with a dark ceiling and floors, the counter and backsplash create a bright visual break, and ample lighting including under-cabinet and in-cabinet makes the room glow.

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This is more in line with the “bit of black” principle and isn’t it gorgeous? I realize not everyone is able to find things like ovens and range hoods so thrilling but I sure can. Not only is this massive cooking area incredibly functional, it’s so pretty to look at. That’s my favorite kind of functional. Brass, black, and white. Hard to go wrong with that combo. How do you like the dark grout with the subway tile? It certainly gives it a modern pop that light grout wouldn’t. I love the dark grout but personally I’d probably go lighter.

one | Bo Bedre via nicety
two |  Ashley Whittaker Design via dustjacket attic
three | Domino via nicety

Quirktastic

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I sure do love a good dose of quirk in interior design. Fuschia pink walls? Not for the faint of heart, to be sure, but it gives this space so much vibrancy and playfulness. Add some vintage cat art and you’ve clearly got a homeowner who doesn’t give a damn, in the best possible way.

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Ah yes, what was I saying about vintage art? Kitsch can be just very very bad… but it can also be a perfect moment of humor and levity. It is not easy to pull off though. Notice how all these pieces share the same basic color palette. This ties them together and keeps the arrangement from looking too cuckoo crazy. There’s a trace of theme (dogs and portraits) but it doesn’t have to be overly rigid. Truly this just takes probably years of collecting and practice mixing together gallery walls until you get really good at it. Something I have not accomplished yet, by the way.

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Alright if fuchsia walls or kitsch art is too much for you, quirkiness can be found in much smaller and equally pleasing doses. I don’t believe I’ve ever mentioned that I am quite the Star Trek fan. You can bet when I saw this image the first thing I did was google “Worf pencil cup” to no avail. (It’s actually a mug made in the ’90s and yes, they probably made all the characters. It’s a good thing I don’t have a stronger collector bug.)

one Julie Ansiau via desire to inspire
two | Hannah Metz via The Selby
three | Jim Franco

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