Just a bit of paint can trans­form a room

Winnipeg Free Press - Section G - - HOMES - CON­NIE OLIVER

IOFTEN sug­gest us­ing colour in the dé­cor in small doses to be­gin with. Paint­ing a fo­cal wall is an easy way to add colour with­out com­mit­ting your­self to adding colour to the en­tire room. Fo­cal walls also al­low you to use a richer colour than you might if you were paint­ing the en­tire room be­cause the painted sur­face is small and will not be over­whelm­ing. Paint­ing a fo­cal wall is a quick and af­ford­able way to give a room new life with­out a lot of com­mit­ment in time or money. If you’ve tried this tech­nique and were not pleased with the out­come, you may have missed a few steps in the process that will en­sure a great look. Follow along to see how it’s done. Invest in good qual­ity paint in a scrump­tious colour that you’ve been wait­ing to try but were leery to use. Bright red? Royal blue? Why not? As you can see from to­day’s photo (cour­tesy of Du­lux Paints) paint­ing a fo­cal wall can change the look and feel of an en­tire room. You can see how this trans­lates in the din­ing room pic­tured. The Tropic Night blue wall colour is car­ried onto the ta­ble linens, which helps the two spa­ces re­late vis­ually. The ex­panse of bright blue wall is bro­ken up with a col­lage of peb­ble-shaped mir­rors and framed by white base­boards. The base­board colour is re­peated in the chair slip­cov­ers, which along with the ta­ble run­ner, also break up the large blue table­cloth. You need con­trast to make a strong colour work and to help bal­ance the ef­fect. Bring­ing in another colour A com­pli­men­tary colour, in hues of yel­low, is added to cre­ate an ex­cit­ing pal­ette. This in­cludes the gold drapes in the din­ing room. The pink roses on the ta­ble also of­fer a splash of colour. Even though the re­main­ing walls are white, you can see how paint­ing a fo­cal colour changes things dra­mat­i­cally. If you’re in the same boat and have white walls, look for that spe­cial spot where colour can be added to pro­vide in­stant drama. Small rooms Many peo­ple think that a small room, like a bath­room, can’t han­dle strong colour. This is not nec­es­sar­ily the case. I sup­pose at one end of the spec­trum a bath­room painted in black might be too much, but a rich colour added to the fo­cal wall (usu­ally where the van­ity is) can ac­tu­ally open up the space and give it per­son­al­ity. Add in some new tow­els and a few ac­ces­sories in a co­or­di­nat­ing colour and your lit­tle bath­room will look grand. For very dark colours, bal­ance the look. The majority of bath­rooms con­tain white sinks, tubs and toi­lets so right there the strong wall colour will be bro­ken up with a light colour. If that’s not the case in your home, think care­fully about the colour you choose. If your van­ity has an espresso fin­ish, for ex­am­ple, you might not want to paint the wall be­hind it dark brown as that would be too dark over­all. Just a bit of paint can re­ally trans­form a room. Take the plunge and choose a fo­cal wall on which to add a rich colour for the New Year. Take your colour in­spi­ra­tion from a paint­ing, a fab­ric pat­tern or a mag­a­zine photo of a fan­tas­tic room and take a leap of faith. Maybe it’s time for a change.


The gold drapes in the din­ing room, com­bined with the pink roses on the ta­ble,

make for an ex­cit­ing pal­ette.

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