We get a lot of questions about what paint we used in our home. I have to say, my friends have really good taste! 😉 Before we moved in, I read lots of blogs trying to find that perfect neutral.
Picking a paint color can be very overwhelming! There are so many images of beautiful, bright rooms with crisp trim and gorgeous decor. It’s easy to get sucked down a rabbit hole of options. Do you want white, or beige, or gray or greige? After watching about 72 episodes of Joanna Gaines making a room look open and bright with a can of paint, I knew it could be done in our little cape too. The rooms aren’t big and I wanted to give the illusion of more space, so the paint needed to feel light and airy.
The first color that really called to me was Moonshine, by Benjamin Moore. I found it on Young House Love’s second house tour and really fell in love with it. It felt so refreshing and youthful!
It’s a beautiful soft gray that didn’t look too cool or too warm–exactly what I wanted! I was feeling confident and waited until the last minute to actually pick up a sample and swatch it. The plan was to use one color throughout the whole house to keep the painting process simple and if the color was right, it would work everywhere. Right?
Wrong! I finally picked up a sample of my beautiful Moonshine paint and put swatches all over the house. Every single room had a block of this color. I was quite thorough 😉
It became clear very quickly that this was not our color. Though it looked great in photos online and even in the can, it just did not work on the walls here. The warm wood trim in the living room and all the green trees reflecting in from outside made the color look blue. (Noooo!) This is where I emphasize to you… BUY A SAMPLE. Don’t just dive in and start throwing paint up all over the place.
I went back to my hardware store and scoured over the paint chips with my mom for a good hour. We place swatch after swatch next to each other. This one looks a little pink, this one looks a little green, that one is too dark… eventually we landed on Pale Oak (OC-20).
It was more on the taupe side, than gray, but knowing how the ‘perfect gray’ looked in our house, I knew leaning a little on the warm side would help avoid having that blue cast from before.
As soon as I got some swatches painted all around the house (again) it was like the heavens opened up! Bestill my heart! Does anyone else feel this strongly about paint? Needless to say we went with this color (in a flat finish) everywhere.
Depending on the time of day, it appears to be a soft pale gray, or a warmer tone, which is the look I had wanted in the first place. It compliments the wood floors beautifully and the light berber carpet upstairs. I love how it feels calm, and looks different all the time. If it’s bright and sunny out, the walls appear slightly green because of all the trees surrounding us and on cloudy days, it’s a soothing neutral.
As for the trim and doors, wherever it was stained wood, we left it. We love having the original 1949 wood, it brings a lot of character to the space. I love having some built in history here. Anywhere that the trim was already painted, we updated with a clean, soft white. We chose Atrium White (PM-13) and it matched up with the walls and floors famously.
I’d love to hear from you! Do you like neutral walls in your home? What are you favorite colors? Be sure to like our new Facebook page, where I share more ideas from I&H as well as other favorite bloggers!