How about a “Frequently Asked Questions” section on your website?

July 24, 2005

Just when I was wondering what to write about on my blog, I received this email!

Dear Ellen,

I don’t know if you can answer this question, but I’m going to try! I’m in love with Gustavian Gray. I’m thinking about it for our kitchen, butler’s pantry and breakfast room walls. I love it in the Summer light. However, what I’m not sure about is the Winter light. Will it be “cold”? I live about an hour north of Atlanta. Let me see if I can give you some info to help. If you draw a 2″ square, then divide it (with an imaginary line) through the center, into 4 equal squares, you’ll basically have our “open floor plan” kitchen, butler’s pantry, breakfast room and family room.

The top left family room: The left side wall is 19 ft. long and has a 12 ft. window that faces North. The two FR walls are painted Home Depot Glidden Delicate Yellow.

The top right kitchen, and the lower right butler’s pantry: These “inner walls” are where the Gustavian Gray would be. There are light beige glazed cabinets along these walls, and a large island in the kitchen. There’s a doorway, into a hallway and on to the dining room, on the wall between these two rooms(sq’s). There’s a doorway, into the living room, on the lower left side of the butler’s pantry(sq).

The lower left breakfast room: These walls would be the Gustavian Gray too. There’s a double French door, on the lower right side of this wall(sq), leading to a large covered deck, and an 8 ft window on the 10 ft. 9 inch North wall.

Obviously, there are some other details and “jogs” to these rooms, but with this info, can you give me some kind of an idea if Gustavian Gray would be a good color for these areas? Or, again, would it be/feel “cold” — now or when the summer light changes?

OK, one more question, since I’m so far into it! The family room ceiling is 21 ft high. It’s “A” shaped, with the top of the “A” cut off/flattened. There are 4 “A’s” “trimmed out” and “beams” on the side walls and across the ceiling area. I hope that makes sense. All of the trim (in the whole house) is painted Duron Natural Echo. Anyway, as I stated above, the walls are Delicate Yellow. I wasn’t sure what color to paint the ceiling, and I had read to paint a tall ceiling one, or two, shades darker then the walls. I’m not crazy about the yellow ceiling. Would blue be too “weird”? If not, what blue? And, how would that then go with Gustavian Gray? Any help and/or ideas would be greatly appreciated. I’m kind of going with a French Country look, with a little English Country left over from our last house.

Ann J.

Dear Ann,

What perfect timing to get your email! I haven’t written into my blog in quite a while as I haven’t really had anything much to say! I’m going to copy and paste your email along with my answer.

Regarding the Gustavian Grey looking too cold in winter. I have a client who has a condo on the water in Seattle who painted her whole house Gustavian Grey and loves it. I always try to balance the warm and cool (i.e. complements) in any room with furnishings. In your situation, while you may not have many furnishings in a kitchen, you have those yellow walls which should balance it perfectly.

As for your ceiling, while I love to paint ceilings blue, when there is not some sort of crown molding delineating the break between wall and ceiling, I always paint the walls and ceiling the same color. It bathes the room in color, rather than breaking it up into a “geometric” space. Then the ceiling just disappears. Here’s a link to a slide show, showing photos of my great room with a 20′ cathedral ceiling painted the same Buttercream as the walls. The trim and only beam is all the same Ashen Green.


Any other questions, please don’t hesitate!

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