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Farrow and Ball

15 years ago

I have to pick paint colors soon. I can't live with the crazy ugly colors in this house much longer and I have a feeling once the new floors go in it will be even worse. :)

I am thinking of using Farrow and Ball and I am pretty sure I read that their color chips are not true to their colors. I am wondering if that is their hand painted colour cards or their fan deck or both? I would like to order one so I can start figuring things out.

I know it shouldn't be this difficult to pick paint colors but all the walnut (trim, doors and windows) is really throwing me for a loop. Now why that makes it more confusing when all my furniture is dark brown too I have no idea.

Help me get rid of my orange (and assorted other horrifying color) walls. :)

And just for laughs - the basement bathroom (DH took this picture before we moved in and I have not been in that room since!)....

Comments (21)

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Ewww...! Maybe just cover everything with a coat of white primer until you decide what F&B colors to use?

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Yup - I'm with awm - you need a clean palette for a while before you can tell what colors you need for your walls. White it all out then see how the light plays with the wood tones you need to work with. I'm sure it seems like a PITA but honestly, you're going to need to prime anyway and I'm betting you need to sand that sponged wall down a bit, too.

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  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Definately primer. It will keep you from having to put so many coats of the other paint over those dark colors.

    Just curious, were the PO's proud of that green bathroom?

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Oh my gosh. That's one of the most "convincing" photos I've ever seen.

    I agree with the other folks, but also with dlm's suggestion to sand down the bathroom (the mind reels) before you prime it.

    And btw, did you all put the bulletin board up in the bathroom? Or was that the POs meeting place?

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I would prime it too, Boopa. I have F&B and the paint chips seems okay with the real deal. I bought sample pots and painted sturdy/small paper plates to carry around. They stack easily for carrying later when buying things for room.

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    OMG. Too funny. My basement bathroom looks similar except nature did it, and it is called 'mold'.

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    All the stuff in that bathroom is the PO's! I have not hung one thing on a wall anywhere since I moved in. I just can't bring myself to do it. Haven't even unpacked one picture box! I seriously think they were colorblind or something. I think they were proud of that bathroom - they did it to the one in the upstairs hallway bathroom too.

    That was taken before we bought the house too. We have since painted it white. That is the only room we have painted so far. We will probably paint the other bathroom too.

    They were painting the Masterbedroom that orange color the day we saw the house. I guess they thought orange and green was a good combo to sell the house. Thing is the location, layout of the house, property (3 acres in a nice development) and pool already there made it the house for us.

    Luckily they were not that colorblind when doing the outside of the house and they actually did a pretty good job on the landscaping which won't make it to difficult to make the outside "us" when we get to it.

    In regards to all the other rooms, we are going to hire painters, so painting the primer ourselves and then deciding colors is not really an option although I agree it would be nice to do things that way. I don't want to go through the process of the painters moving the furniture around twice, it will already be moved around by the flooring company too. We are having walnut flooring put in to match the walnut trim, doors, etc.

    The flooring now is as bad as the walls! Notice the lovely kitchen tile and indoor/outdoor carpet in the family room:

    So, anyone know about the paint fan deck vs hand painted cards from Farrow and Ball?

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Good idea on the plates Allison! I am leaning towards your idea of a cream color, but there are lots of offwhites and I still have not totally given up on a blue color for the downstairs. :D So I want to get the paint chips/fandeck from them.

    I tried to convince DH to prime the walls with me this weekend. It ain't gonna happen. :(

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Good idea on the plates Allison! I am leaning towards your idea of a cream color, but there are lots of offwhites and I still have not totally given up on a blue color for the downstairs. :D So I want to get the paint chips/fandeck from them.

    I tried to convince DH to prime the walls with me this weekend. It ain't gonna happen. :(

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    The thing about F&B is that the colors just look so different across a broad expanse of wall. The chips are "true" but they don't convey the final product for some reason. I don't fully understand why...maybe Pirula or Bellaflora or Rococo can speak to that issue better than I can. My hunch is that it has to do with the quality of the finish and they way it interacts with ambient lighting and hence affects the end color result. (Clear as mud?)

    Soooo...if you are serious about F&B, you really need the fandeck. I have found mine invaluable and will probably buy the new one with the 18 new colors. My old one has seen better days. The other option would be to go to a store and just do the best you can with a few sample cans. At any rate, you should use the wet samples on as large a space as you can bear, two coats, yadda, yadda.

    I have some old sample cans that are mostly full which I could share with you (if I can find them!) Let me know which colors you are considering. Most of mine are "color" colors...no neutrals.

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Thanks Amy. I will order the fan deck. I don't think there is a store near me, so I figured once I narrow it down I can order the samples. I am just not sure I can narrow it down from the pictures of the colors on line. I really like all the positive things I have read about their paint and I went to a BM paint store the other day and was just totally overwhelmed.

    I love a matte finish and I don't mind not having so many colors to pick from, so I think it will work for me.

    The only colors I have seen elsewhere that I like are from potterybarn (atmospheric - and I can't link a picture) and from restoration hardware:

    I might order a sample of each of those too.

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Okay, well I took too long to hit submit. Yikes, I missed most of the conversation!

    I do think that both color card and fandeck (color book) are real paint. For the price of the color card, I'd just get the fandeck. I did have someone at the Greenwich store mail me the card for free...not sure if they give them away at the stores or not.

    But again, even the larger chips are not enough IMO. You must use the pots.

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    IKWYM about overwhelm. It is great to have a small palette to work with, be it EK, F&B, BM Historical or whatever. Makes life a bit more rational.

    I gotta run, but will watch for more questions if they arise. I love F&B and am also in the process of painting a new house. No sponge painting to deal with though. You have my condolences!

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I am so happy to see your post because I have been thinking of you! Your post (in reno_fan's thread about using accessories) about not having plants because of your cats made me reevaluate what it is I think is missing in our home. And I think I'm part-you because for us it is the plants -- I'd thought it was the lamps (which we don't have) but no, you're right.

    Also like you, we are an animal family (three indoor cats) who are not kind to plants, so I found some beautiful artificial plants and have been having a wonderful time. And I owe it all to you! We'll see if the cats start to attack these new plants ....

    I want to say I am envious of you getting to paint your whole house. I lovelovelove colors so much, love playing with them, and am a little sad we're all done. I fantasize about changing our den to orange and black (it's currently the darkest brown and cream), but seeing as it was just finished this past May it's unlikely it will be repainted anytime soon, even by me! (Now that my youngest child [two years-old] is gaining more independence I am starting to attack projects which have been in wait since before he was born. Repainting will have to be last on a l-o-n-g list.)

    So I'm going to live vicariously through you.

    boopadaboo, your curb appeal is lovely -- so majestic!

    Thank you again for the encouragement to find plants and thank you for letting me watch your quest for colors!

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Too funny, we can so relate!!! We had painters tape blue in our kitchen, took 3 coats of primer & 5 coats of paint to cover. Must have been a special on that carpet, we had the exact same thing throughout the entire house!! Living room was bold maroon and bathroom was lathered in thick plaster that they tried to do a wall treatment with and then they painted it brown, (you can only guess what it looked like). It took a week for us to sand it all off! So glad we're not alone, but we feel your pain. Everyone is so right on when they say just focus on the primer. If you do, it will help in the end. For me, getting rid of those ugly colors and having white walls was the equivalent of the feeling I have after getting rid of a serious migraine, euphoria! Love the exterior it's very pretty!

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    You are so sweet. I would love to see pics of the plants. :) I am going to give it a try again if I ever get some rooms finished. I did have a few fake ones in my last house and they mostly survived.

    This was the DR in my last house. I did real plants since it had doors and I mostly kept the cats out....

    {{gwi:68063}}

    To me they made a big differnce in the room. I found for my little furballs(this is them piled on my lap - any chance to show of the kitties)

    that fake plants that did not have the shredded kind of brown stuff that covers the "dirt" area was key. They ate that up first.

    I meant to post in back in that thread about how I am more in love with your kitchen now that I know you mostly cook vegan in there but I have been struggling with switching lately. I was not even vegetarian so going vegan has been a slow process for me over the last couple of months. :)

    Thank you - I really do love driving up to this house. It was quite a change at first getting used to a house half the size of our last one, but we absolutely love it here - ugly paint colors and all. I was kind of in a decorating slump, but now that I am back with it again, I can't wait to start unpacking the tons of boxes that are filling up the basement.

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I feel for you lukki if you had this carpet too! Have you been able to replace it yet?

    Well DH has agreed to start priming the bedroom. Yay! I also ordered and received in a day (go JC Penneys) the set below. So I guess the first paint color I have to pick is for the Master Bedroom. Maybe we will actually get it painted before the floor gets put in.

    I am planning on putting this over the bed

    I have two dressers (one is used as a nightstand) and a nightstand that are painted this green color by the PO (I got them at an estate sale many years ago)

    I would like to put this dresser in the room too and then hang the TV over it....

    I would love a chair in the room as well. I am looking on craigslist since the only extra one I have right now is this one which I don't think will work....

    I have to figure out what to do with all these wires. excuse the mess!

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I had to chuckle looking at a few of your photos. Are we neighbors? My house "before" looked a lot like yours.

    The pros of F&B is the fabulous matte surface. I feel it improves the look of walls, most definitely. I'm also thrilled with their eggshell trim paint, every bit as beautiful.

    I used F&B throughout the house, now fully repainted, so I tested a great many colors.

    If you want pastels, F&B has little to offer. Some of the new colors are lighter though.
    The blues are all very green.
    The dark colors are amazing and easiest with the right trim color.

    The whites, except for 2 (All White and Pointing), have undertones and some aren't what most would call white. They are made to coordinate with certain colors and will look terrible with others. They have a what-goes-with-what on their website that's helpful. If you want regular white woodwork Pointing is it.

    Some of the colors are more changeable than others because they have so many pigments. Best way to explain: I have Shaded White in my foyer and it continues up the stairwell and into the upstairs landing. I also used it in the laundry room. In the laundry room -- which has a big fluorescent fixture -- the color is cafe au lait with 0 undertones. In the foyer it looks nearly gray with a beigy/green cast. (Incandescent recessed fixtures). Upstairs it looks dark gray but sometimes it looks green. The fixture has a halogen bulb in a surface mounted fixture up there, which is very yellow vs the bright white in the laundry room.

    Shaded White is one of the most changeable (leave it to me) but not atypical, which is why the fan deck is said to not be accurate. It is, but the color changes so much depending on the light.

    The fan deck chips target which colors to sample. Then I got sample pots and painted huge samples on foam core board (with double tape on back so I could move it) and several in a room on different walls (important) to see how they look.
    My little paint map made sure everything went together. (Believe I posted that)

    If that sounds too boring or too much work, I'd go to ICI Dulux paint, also excellent surface quality (not F&B but very lovely and much better than most). They have a big fan deck and/or EK uses that base so her colors are also available. F&B Eggshell is great for trim and looks super with ICI walls.

    Hope that helps.

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    Thank you for the picture of your cats! My four year-old is here with me and he keeps asking me to scroll back up so he can them again. We both said "awwww" as I opened your thread ... you must be v. happy to get to cuddle so many beautiful kitties.

    (and now just from me) And thank you for the pictures of your dining room and plants. Wow! I love the color you used on the wall there and, of course, I was envious of all the live greenery! I cannot even remember what that was like. More than you know I appreciate your telling me that the only way you could have them is because you could close the room off from your cats -- I've had some judgmental / snotty comments from other cat owners "Well, my cats are well-behaved and would never eat my plants!"

    Do they really think I trained our cats to do this? Do they really think I didn't try everything (humane) to get them to stop? But I love our animals and we're a family and same as I happily make tons of safety concessions for my human children (covering outlets, locking away cleaning products, etc.) I'll make them for the feline / canine members of our family as well!

    Aargh. Thank you for letting me vent. I just really appreciate knowing I'm not the only ones whose cats like to eat greenery. We used to purchase cat grass until we realized that while neither of them (this was before the third joined our family) could control themselves (they'd gorge away), one of them consistently threw up after her cat grass meal.

    Four of the artificial plants (two orchids, two tropicals) arrived yesterday and more are on their way. I'm trying to figure out placement. But this morning as I was brushing my teeth I was reading a shelter magazine (Domino); what was I noticing in all the interiors to which I was drawn? Plants and flowers! You really did open my eyes.

    And about being vegan, I have to say if it weren't for baking, it would be so much easier! Some things I can easily adapt to vegan baking, but others ... eggs and sour cream are sooo good! And tofu sour cream in a baked good just isn't the same. Some of the time Ener-G egg replacer works, and other times I have to fiddle around with oil / prune puree. But you know what? We do always have a carton of eggs in the fridge because most of the time I'm lazy! Almost every week my four year-old and I make challah (egg bread) together and I have yet to figure out how to make a passable vegan challah. My two year-old has recently discovered chocolate chocolate chip challah so I need to find some elastic waist pants ... for myself because I eat right alongside him!

    I have to say or I want to say I think there is nothing wrong with being a vegetarian and not a vegan. There is nothing wrong with eating meat and fish and dairy. I love (and overeat) chocolate, but a good friend of mine, who eats meat, doesn't have a sweet tooth; it would never occur to her to eat dessert first. We're just designed differently!

    I find vegetarian eating is a lot more flexible and certainly a lot easier than vegan in the outside world (going to parties and being able to eat pizza is the first example which popped into my head). I think our intentions are what matter most. And your intentions with your beautiful cats is totally apparent: You've made a safe, gorgeous home for both humans and felines alike.

    When I've figured out plant placement I'll be back with photos!

    Happy long weekend!

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I would love to meet a person that can train cats RM :) It just isn't even worth the effort to me. I chose to have pets, and we find a way to exist as peacefully as possible (except during the midnight crazies they get now and again) together and that includes not buying and leaving out items that I would be worried about them breaking.

    I am looking at my transtition to vegan as a work in progress. It is simpler to go vegetarian when eating out, that is for sure....

    Thanks for the info Rococogurl. That finish is exactly what I am after. I would say I am leaning towards medium depth of color, not pastel and not too dark. Hopefully DH will go along with me. :) If my trim wasn't dark and the house somewhat dark I would love to do even darker colors. I am not a big fan of light colors.

    I can't wait to get my fan deck so I can narrow down some choices and order some samples.

  • 15 years ago
    last modified: 9 years ago

    I ordered probably about 50 sample pots from F&B trying to find the right colors for my rooms. None of the colors that I got in the sample pots had any relationship to the fan deck that I also purchased (don't waste your money).

    What I have found in my quest for F&B colors is that your location and the type of light and colors coming into the house make a huge difference. For instance, someone showed me a picture of their room done in Blackened, which looked like the loveliest pale blue in the photo (and she said that's what it reads in her East coast house), but in my So.Cal. house, which has a Green-on-steroids backyard that looks like a lush park, Blackened looked like nothing but dead, prison gray. In other words, yuck. I have compared other colors with East coast compatriots with similar (or rather disimilar) results. Sample pots are the ONLY way to pick an F&B color. And make sure you have a full two coats of the sample + view it at different times of the day and in different lighting conditions. You may find that something that looks lovely in daytime/natural light is hideous in artificial/evening light. Good luck.