SPRING FLOWERS - Chasing the blues away

It was time for a break.
I could tell by the way I had to drag myself out of bed on a Saturday
and how I was not looking forward to the dust and the disarray that has become my home...
Yup.  I had the remodeling blues.

I had planned a little outing with the girls..
and all our plans fell through, one by one.

So Mr. B came through for me and whisked me away to Rogers Gardens
and their annual spring floral displays...
I just had to share some Spring beauty with you.

Rogers Gardens in Corona Del Mar, CA is a hardworking, plant filled nursery
that just happens to have this amazing gift shop
and it was filled with fresh floral arrangements for their Spring event... 

it was exactly what I needed to abolish the blues
you just can't feel glum when surrounded by fresh flowers...
I think containers can really make an arrangement..
and RG has the best..
 In the indoor plant area, where their floral department is housed,
there were some pretty amazing hanging containers
filled with moss and orchids

 The flowers were so wonderful,

I almost forgot to look at the rest of the stuff...

 The displays are always beautiful...
I especially loved this glowing orb in the urn...
great idea for a wedding..

Happy Spring!
For some of you, it is long awaited!


Hi, I have painted my basement with Muslin OC-12 BM as the main color with accent walls in two rooms of Boothbay Gray HC-165, you can see both colors from the main entrance. 

Boothbay Gray (Benjamin Moore)
Muslin (Benjamin Moore)

I now have to bring the color up the stairs (narrow stairway) which opens in to the entrance way and the main floor.  White Dove OC-17 is the ceiling color.  What color would you suggest I paint the stairway  and entrance way in?
Also can you suggest complementary colors that go with these colors as accents in the rooms?
Another question I have two bedrooms that I have painted with Muslin and an accent wall of Carolina Gull 2138-40 in both rooms, what colors can I use for accents for pillows, wall hangings to add some nice warm colors?

Thanks for any help you can give me.

Michelle, I would refrain from changing your paint color for each new area as it tends to chop up your space and make it feel disjointed and disconnected.  I would simply take the Muslin up the stairs and into the entryway, keeping the ceiling the same color.

As for accents with Carolina Gull, Boothbay Gray and Muslin - Both are quite neutral but Carolina Gull and Boothbay are the stronger of the three colors.  As they are neutrals, there are many colors that will go well as accents.  Metals - you name it, it will go.  Gold, Silver, Black or Bronze - all work well.
Colors:  Light soft grey, mustard, orange, gold, reds, turquoise, aqua, cream, beige, tan, white and all the wonderful wood tones.  That's the beauty of neutrals - they go with just about anything!  You just have to pick your favorite!

Good luck!



 It is important in creating a lasting beautiful design to clear your mind of the trends of the day
and meditate a little on the things that really make you happy and the colors that you find comforting.
Don't get caught up in a passing fancy that you grow tired of a few months down the road.

I am still surprised to find that many of my clients don't recognize they have a style all their own.

Your home carries your spirit and your personality
and so its essential that you know what delights and inspires you.

Centsational Girl

If you love a bright color, don't be afraid to say so.  
We should live with the colors we love.

You may not want it on your walls, but you can live with it in accents throughout your room
or perhaps, if it is possible, a grayed down version on your walls.

Because graying down a color makes neutral, soothing and extremely livable.
Like these gray greens by Benjamin Moore

Walls, after all, should be backdrops to the lovely furnishings of your home.

Walls should be quiet friends, applauding in the background 
they should support your design, not detract 
So, I always feel walls should be subtle

Here are some beautiful subtle colors by Benjamin Moore to try:

they are all neutrals and will be lovely backgrounds to your more vibrant pops of color

Wall colors don't necessarily have to be light ...
they can be dark and dreamy

as long as they are a grayed down tone,
they will be a beautiful background

So if you love turquoise, or aqua, or lemon yellow, or hot pink...
Live with it - but be smart about it...

Don't let it shout in your house - subdue it a little
let it pop out in accents....
and be soft and subtle on your walls.


Hi Claudine,
I came across your blog and love it! (and all of your suggestions/tips!)
I bought a house last year and have been avoiding painting my kitchen cabinets because of all of the work that goes into it...but as you can see from the picture the dark wood cabinets have got to go!

I painted the kitchen walls Benjamin Moore's Cape Hatteras Sand and am looking for a kitchen cabinet color.
Cape Hatteras Sand - wall color
Benjamin Moore

Since my floors are white, I wanted to do a pop of color, green I was thinking. But, not sure what color!? Do I stay in the same gray/green color or go with more of a light pop of green?

Thanks so much, and looking forward to hearing back from you! Erin Marx

Hi Erin,
For something as permanent as a cabinet color - I would recommend the longer lived, more livable and neutral grayed down color.  However, that being said, I completely love the kitchen above, with the fabulous green and white palette in bolder, deeper colors. (It is still a slightly grayed down version of teal - so maybe that is why).   Generally, I recommend keeping your pops of color to your accessories, fabrics and other accents.  That comes from my own desire to not have to repeat the whole cabinet painting experience every 10 years or so...  So, be realistic.  If you crave color - go for it.  If you want a pop of color - think neutral.  You need to go by what you are willing to do - and not let the magazine photographs seduce you...

Cabinets take a lot of work to paint.  Sanding and painting, repeated several times.   You may not want to redo that process, or the cost involved if you have it done professionally, when your color becomes outdated a few years down the road.  Which is why I recommend going with a neutral for cabinets.

If you still want a little more color - consider painting the island a fun pop of color

Otherwise, fresh green can be added to a neutral kitchen to make it pop in accessories and possibly a colorful backsplash.
Here are some examples.  Good luck!


link within

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