A few weeks back I introduced my friend Erin and her apartment. She’s stripped down the wallpaper, and started the all consuming process of a minor renovation. When last we heard from her, she explained to us her inspirations and I could see her going more towards neutrals. Then, last week when I was in Seattle she surprised me with a huge pile of paint samples… all in white! Struggling with how to properly do color in her small space, she’s decided to keep it open and airy… here’s her post:

All the world’s a rainbow… and all I see is white. Or off-white to be exact. With names like moonlight white, timid white, white wisp or white diamond. Don’t get me wrong, I do love color, but in this renovation/rejuvenation of my place I’ve finally figured out that I’m trying to meld two objectives:

1)Turn my first home into a place that feels like my own AND
2)Create a space that future owners or renters can also easily see themselves in.

I mean come on – how long can a girl live in 475sq feet? Do you know how many pairs of shoes I have? I need to maximize the potential of the space rather than design with only my tastes and furniture in mind. Because of that, I think I need to stay within fairly neutral territory when it comes to choosing paint.

Lack of color, however, does not have to be boring! Here are some rooms from Living Etc that I’ve been drooling over and would love to emulate.

Since many of you asked for more photos of my place, I’ve provided a 360 (counterclockwise) view of my living room for you to inspect. This is the room I’m going to start on first (bedroom next!).

Enter through the front door and check your hair in either mirror (photo 1), plop down on my green chaise that I found at Chartreuse in Seattle (photo 2), then take a load off sitting under the window at either my little café table or my vintage white vinyl chair from Collective (if you live in Seattle – when the new location opens, go!) (photo 3), or watch a little TV sitting atop my West Elm shelving (photo 4). That’s my bedroom door you’re facing. You may also notice all my crown molding, picture rail, and woodwork (pics 1-4).

As girl on a budget, I have pieces in my living room that aren’t going anywhere – the couch is here to stay (right now the only real color we need to work with) as are my dining table and my white vintage chair (I love it!). However I am open to bringing in a few new pieces. Possibilities include a new rug, a more open and light looking coffee table, and (fingers crossed) the perfect credenza to sit my TV on and hide all my ugly electronics.

The questions running through my head are these… Can I take something from Benjamin Moore’s over 150 “off-whites” to turn my living room from girly dorm room to sophisticated mod? What would you do with all the crown molding? Accent color, or all white? Any tips for designing with white on white to make sure it’s still warm?

I’ve been thinking about making things a little more interesting by painting the molding that creates a small archway between the “entry” and living room in an accent color. I think this will add some drama and clearly separate the space. I also have to deal with a bright pink radiator (how they got that paint to match the wallpaper so perfectly, I’ll never know) so I’m considering painting the radiator the same accent color as the molding – maybe something like the grey in this room via Desire to Inspire.

These are just a few of the myriad ideas floating around in my head. I’d love your help dear Coco+Kelley readers. Now that I’ve gotten rid of the pink, what you would paint the walls and trim to create the Utter Gorgeousness I’m in desperate search of?

What do you think?

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