Full disclosure: I’m calling this a ‘Quick Fix,’ but there’s really no such thing as ‘quick’ when it comes to painting an entire house.
Sherwin Williams was one of our first stops after closing on our house (right after a celebratory meal of burgers and champagne with a side order of ‘what the hell have we just done?!’). We weren’t playing around: we had an entire house to paint.
If I had to describe our home’s existing color scheme, it would be ‘non-fat Greek yogurt with a sprinkle of peanut butter granola and a drizzle of honey‘ (oh, yum). The walls had been freshly painted a soft vanilla, and the trim was gloriously white and glossy.
Great for maximizing the natural light? Yes. Great for making the space feel larger? Yes. Great blank canvas? Yes.
Our style? No.
We had a lot of painting to do.
The vision: grey everything.
We struggled a bit to find the right grey. We wanted a shade that gave life and color to the walls, without darkening the rooms (especially towards the back of the house where we had limited natural light). We also didn’t want to go too light and end up with walls that looked boring and white (blech).
After much chin-scratching and Pinteresting (and testing paint swatches in every nook, cranny, corner and shadow we could find) we found the perfect grey in Sherwin William’s ‘Passive.’
We wanted a little more oomph for our dining room and downstairs office — they’re the first rooms you see from the front door (and they won the natural light lottery compared to the rest of the house). We spiced it up with the dark grey ‘Peppercorn.’
We chose the flat finish Cashmere paint for our walls, and the glossy finish SnapDry paint in ‘Tricorn’ for our banister / handrails.
Nice little family of colors, aren’t they?
Since our upstairs carpet was going to be yanked out, we were in a mad rush to get the bedrooms painted before the new flooring was installed. (Our logic was old carpet = no drop cloth… and I stand by this decision).
I’m not a parent, but I think that painting the first room in a house is kind of like having your first child… you take your time, take every precaution, you go slow and steady…
…but then you realize that no matter how hard you try, you’re a mediocre painter (/parent) at best, and you might as well just get the whole thing over with.
(And by the third room, you turn into a total jackass that can’t be bothered to use painter’s tape or take off the socket covers).
We started upstairs, where ‘Passive’ took on a very blue hue when it went on the walls. I was initially freaked that we’d end up with powder blue walls. Luckily, it softened to a cool grey when it dried, but I think we’ll still need to work on lighting and accent colors to warm it up and get rid of some of the underlying blue tones.
‘Peppercorn,’ on the other hand, had a sort of chalkboard vibe wet, and then dried into a… (gulp) navy blue.
I loved the deep, dark shade and how well it popped against our bright white wainscoting and trim. (Bonus: the wainscoting was a shiny white, which gave it even more “wow” factor next to the flat walls). Still, I was a little concerned that ‘Peppercorn’ read more ‘navy’ than it ‘charcoal.’
By this point, we were in ‘dream team’ mode: R got the walls done with the roller, then I followed behind to cut in the edges.
We got pretty good at being mediocre, and slowly but surely everything started to come together.