I have a crush on Benjamin Moore!

I am addicted to color.  Madly, sadly, badly, whatever it is, addicted.  Hooked crazy out the ching-chong!  When it comes to applying it to my life, it is not an option, I have to have it… its like vitamins or sunlight or water,  I NEED it!

As we’ve just this week moved into the new place, I have pretty much finalized the choice for every last tone for every possible surface… not completely, but fairly close!   I am still up in the air about the den (quickly being dubbed as “Pan’s Man Cave” around here), and a few other detail areas, but I have a pocket full o’ paint chips and I’m not afraid to use ’em!

When we started the home hunt, I started boxing our belongings, and I tried to sort according to a plan.  Things that went with my concept of the master bedroom were gathered in one box, and things that seemed to be for my dining room into another.  A little at a time, all of our belongings have begun to fall into place, and the ideas I’d like to try for this home have lined up accordingly.  However all of  this previous effort at organization has paid off, it has made it very easy to look at the items overall and see underlying themes and colors.  This gives me a place to start for each space, and that’s great.  There is a lot about my design that is still flexible, but its coming together nicely.

Out and about in the world, I would stop and look whenever visiting a shop with a selection of paints, gathering huge one-color chips from here and five-tone strips from there…  my intent was to evaluate their overall color selection and settle upon one brand of paint to use house-wide.  I happened into the Stanley Brothers Ace Hardware in Bearden, needing to make keys (new house!) and while waiting for that procedure I ventured to their paints department.  Their bank of Benjamin Moore chips is astounding!  The range of color!  The selection!  I gathered more than a few handfuls and paid for my keys.

It was only later in the car, riding around with Pan driving, that I really got to flipping through them.  They have a chartreuse chip!  I LOVE that!  I have a special affinity for not only the color chartreuse, but the word.  I’m of the impression that it and puce are the most misunderstood colors ever.  (And, somehow the most confused for each other, even though no where close to the same color.)  I think I feel the tickle of a crush coming on…  I also noticed that one of the white’s I’d chosen is called “Marilyn’s Dress.”  Fabulusss.  So, you know, there’s that.

And then I actually got to looking at the colors, and started mixing and matching, looking at them in different rooms at different times and different lights, and I become really pretty sure that Benjamin Moore is going to be my answer.  These colors are gorgeous.  I’ve selected all the colors for upstairs but the guest room–I think I will try and wait until I’ve found my chenille bedspread and a few other decor pieces for in there– but they’ve made it pretty easy, and I’m really excited to see my choices on the walls.  In thinking through my ideas for the house, I realize I’m pretty much pushed to  get some paint on the master bedroom walls first, and I needed to do it immediately.  This last week was Thanksgiving, and my parents came up for the bulk of the week to help out in the new place.  My parents and their beautiful home are a subject altogether– suffice it to say that they are hardworking, talented, and giving– and I knew I would be on the receiving end of some of that help.  Fantastic.  In the chore list that I had dictated to Dad was the fact that I needed my headboard mounted to the wall, and in order for any sort of gorgeous color to go on there, I needed to get on it and get it painted.  My Mother was totally willing to numb her hands for me (that Carpel Tunnel is a bee-yotch, I would know for fact as I had it while I was pregnant) and help me get it done.  Now the walls are no longer dingy, dirty and gross, in fact, the complete opposite.

Which leads me to my next point–  This Benjamin Moore looks rockin’ fantastic on the walls.  Like, I could use dirty language I’m so happy how well this paint has covered, EXCITED.  Instead of shrieking about how farging amazing this paint has covered, I’m going to jump straight to photographic proof….

The Yucky Bed Wall in the Master Bedroom

This is the disgusting before.  See that peach area?  Yeah, I’m not sure what that was, it seemed like maybe some ‘art’ was matted and the matte colored the walls?  Something like that… and the last renters had had frames EVERYWHERE.  Like in the areas between windows and ceiling, or windows and floor… *way* up high, where I need a stepladder just to pull the nails and spackle.  And these walls were so. Gross.  Dirty in a creative way I’ve never seen before!  Greasy, smudgy, gross, gross, gross.  If you look really closely in this second photo, you can see dirtier lines where the studs are.  I don’t even *understand* that.  I fretted to my Mother, “I have tried to wipe these down, should we prime them?”  She says, “We don’t have time for that, let’s just try a few coats of the paint.”  She was right.  We didn’t have the time.

Window Two in Master Bedroom

Mom got a jump start on it while we went to get Chinese food (mmmm!  I’m about ready for a home-cooked meal in this place!) and when we returned, I began the job of cutting in around the trim and ceiling.  She rolled the broad areas, I did the up high painting, and we were done in about four hours, counting a couple of short breaks to eat and the like.  The room is about 12′ by 14′, and when I inspected the (gorgeous!) paint job the next day, I was really amazed at how fantastically it had covered.  I needed a touch up in the bulk of my brushed areas (I always find that my brushed-on paint is never as thick of the ‘orange peel’ coating of the roller, so this is no shocker), and in a few isolated areas where the soil had been heavier, but now that the job is done, the room looks like *heaven.*  In fact, the coat of medium purple that I chose is really moody depending on time of day, and can be whimsical at one time and completely sultry at another.  The only complaint that I would have is that now the ceiling looks grossly yellowed (mmm… “Dog Tooth,” there’s that color again!) and I really want to freshen it; and the dinged and dirty trim needs a crisp coat of something glossy and white.  Not really ‘problems,’ per se.  More money for my boyfriend Benjamin….

So, here are some plain wall pics of this new color, which I painted on all four walls of our master.  Benjamin Moore’s “Crocus Petal Purple,” a bold, energetic color that looks really, really beautiful in our room with Southern morning sunlight.

Crocus Petal Purple by Benjamin Moore

< This pic here, this is that same wall where you could see the lines of the studs it was so dirty.  This is from the window to the corner.  (Note the taped-up switchplate in both pics.)  One coat!  I am blown away.  This wall is opposite of the bed, where my chest of drawers will eventually go.  It is also the wall behind Ozzie kitty (and my left foot) in this next picture.

He Thinks He’s a Supermodel

It has never been said that I have been afraid of color, and this purple will be the backdrop to a lot of other colors that are just as bold and vibrant.  I painted our headboard a pale, clear sky blue years ago when I purchased it, and I know I wish to keep that.  It is very likely that I will also paint the awaiting chest of drawers the same color, I am under the impression it will tie them together so considerably that they may appear to be a mid-century set, as opposed to some sort of hodgepodge, which is what they actually are.  And then there is the orange– no shy color of its own.  I figured out before we were married that my husband has a strong preference for orange decor, and being that we live in Knoxville, orange is pretty easy to come by in these parts.  (There is a reason that a UT cheer is “GO BIG ORANGE!” and it has nothing to do with loving sweet citrus fruits.)  One wishing to incorporate orange into their decor should have no issues thrift shopping in the East Tennessee area.  Over the last year I’ve scored a few things that I’ve set aside specifically for use in the master, and I’ve been fortunate enough to find some fabrics that tie these wild selections together in a way my husband and I both find appealing.  It should be interesting to see how that turns out!  The key will be executing it in a way that will allow me to switch it up a little bit, I need to be able to rotate elements some and keep it fresh.

So, the paint got done in a timely enough manner that my Dad was able to successfully mount the headboard to the wall.  This is awesome because the headboard has small built-in ‘side tables,’ (allright, fine, they are glorified shelves, but they are awesome, and I love them, and I don’t want to any more about it!) and at the previous home they had been attached to the bed.  That’s the typical thing, right?  The headboard is part of the bed, right?  Well, our bed’s frame is floating, and when we had attached to it, before, the problem was if the bed shifted one inch in either direction back or forward, this would cause the shelves to pitch and whatever on them would ride forward or backward precariously.

The Headboard and the Purple Wall

Fun.  So anyway, it seemed pretty obvious to me that if we wished to use this headboard in this house (and we DO) that it needed to be attached to the wall, not the bed.  It was easy to commit to a wall, too, it seemed like the only obvious choice to really enjoy the low line of it, and the other two long walls have windows on them.  Once Dad got it up firmly mounted onto the wall, we just pushed the bed (did I mention that frame is on wheels?  Yeah.  See why it was shifty before?) right up to it.  So here it is, ready to go, and I have been thrilled with how well the shelves work now.  It seems a relief to look for chap-stick in the middle of the night and not find that it has rolled away into the corner of the room, where you must debate getting out of your warm bed into a freezing room or continuing to suffer with dry chappy lips the rest of the night.  One should not be forced to face such tragic decisions when there is a nightstand right. there.  And now I don’t have to!

My turquoise bed skirt was a KARM find from two weeks ago, it is a narrow blue-on-blue stripe, 100% cotton.  It was six bucks!  Yeah!  I know all of this color has the potential to look immature, but frankly, I’m not concerned with that.  I think when finished, and viewed in the scope of the complete house, it should feel appropriate.  I don’t really do muted well (this is visually or vocally, unfortunately!) and I see no reason to even fake it.  I like color, I want color,  and I think the goal is to use it creatively enough that in the end it doesn’t feel like our home was decorated by our six-year-old.  (I don’t want it to look like it was decorated excluding him, either!)  Instead it should say, “Welcome!   We are fun, modern, and functioning here!”  So far so good, Ben Moore.  (I wonder if he would mind if I called him “Ben?”)





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