Whole House Paint Colors

A young couple that recently moved to Richmond from Charleston, SC contacted me to help them in their home.  They wanted to start by selecting new paint colors for each room to give the house a fresh start and to make it feel more like them.  They knew they wanted blues and grays throughout the house, but they did not have a lot of furnishings and rugs that were dictating specific colors, so we had a lot of choices to select from. Here is what we decided:

Gray and Blue Whole House Paint Colors

whole house paint colors

(SW = Sherwin Williams   BM = Benjamin Moore)

SW Sleepy Blue 6225 ~ We started in the living room.  One of two rugs they did bring with them is going in the living room.  We used that as our starting point, and pulled this blue to coordinate with the rug.

SW Mindful Gray 7016 & SW Mountain Air 6224 ~ The living room opens to the dining room, so we chose two colors that complement the Sleepy Blue.  Mindful Gray is for the walls and Mountain Air for the ceiling.

BM Quiet Moments 1563 ~ Off of the dining room is a sunroom that leads out to the back yard.  Quiet Moments is a nice soft blue, green, gray that changes colors with different amounts of sunlight, but looks great at any time of day.  The kitchen also connects to the dining room, so we decided to repeat Quiet Moments in there.

SW Snowbound 7004 & SW Online 7072 ~ They have a sunken den with a fireplace that does not get a lot of natural light.  The room is a blank slate right now, and they wanted to keep it as light as possible.  We chose Snowbound for the walls, and Online as an accent on the backs of bookcases and on the brick fireplace that was already painted.

BM Brittany Blue 1633 ~ We selected Brittany Blue for the first floor powder room.

SW Passive 7064 ~ For the downstairs hallway, stairway, and upstairs hallway, Passive was the perfect gray to tie the two floors together.

BM Beach Glass 1564 ~ They wanted the master bedroom to feel calm and cozy.  Beach Glass is the darker version of Quiet Moments, and is one of my favorite paint colors.  It, too, can look blue, green, or gray depending on the time of day, and is perfect for a bedroom.

SW Mountain Air 6224 ~ We repeated Mountain Air (from the dining room ceiling) upstairs in the master bathroom and hall bathroom.

SW Nebulous White 7063 ~ For a guest bedroom that right now is a blank slate, we stuck with a white to give the room a fresh feel.  Accessories, window treatments, and bedding will eventually be added to give the room color and personality.

BM Misty Memories 2118-60 ~ Misty Memories is a gray with a purple undertone to it. When they told me they wanted gray for their daughter's nursery, and they already had purple and yellow bedding, I knew this was the color.

SW Snowbound 7004 ~ We repeated Snowbound (den) on all of the ceilings (except the dining room) and on all of the trim.

BM Dream I Can Fly 769 ~ Where did we use Dream I Can Fly? On the front door, for a fun pop of color, and welcoming entrance to the house!

So, there you have it - a whole house paint color scheme.  Why did I specify so many different shades of blue and gray?  Every room has different lighting and different fixed elements (rugs, existing furniture, countertops, cabinets) to take into consideration. Finding the perfect wall color is a balancing act of all of the pieces in the room.

A huge thank you to the wonderful team at Barden's Decorating for completing all of the prep and painting on this project!  Selecting the colors was only the first step, executing the plan with talented painters is just as important.

ο Have you used any of these paint colors in your home?

Cathy Green Interiors monogram

Design Trends for 2013

I know that we are already over a month into 2013 (I can hardly believe it!), but I wanted to share a few design trends that I predict will be popular in 2013. Brass

The first design trend is brass.  Brass accents in lighting, hardware, and accessories are back in a big way!

breakfast nook


The past several years have been filled with brushed nickel, but brass is making a comeback. 

brass accents


If you already have brass door knobs and other hardware in your home, you’re in luck!  And if you've changed everything out for brushed or polished nickel, don’t worry – those finishes are still in.  Keep your eye out though for a fun mirror, étagère, bar cart, or other unique piece that will work in your home.

brass etagere


Colors- Emerald Green & Neutral mixed with color

Emerald green is the Pantone 2013 color of the year.  Emerald is a beautifully rich jewel tone that pairs well with many colors – yellows, blues, pinks, purples, other greens –almost anything really.

emerald family room


A few ways to incorporate emerald green into your home: pillows, lampshades, a new front door color, or a painted piece of furniture.

emerald dining chairssource

Another color trend I see continuing in 2013 is popularity of grays and neutrals mixed with splashes of color.

gray and color living room


Don’t be afraid to mix and match colors and patterns to find a balance that works for you.  In this mostly neutral living room, the red chandelier adds a fun focal point, while the blue accents on the two lamps are much more subtle, but equally interesting.

neutral & color living roomsource

By keeping the walls and sofa neutral, this mix of color and pattern works to create a fun and personalized living room. (Did you notice the brass lamp and side table?)

neutral & color living room


Rustic & Industrial

A third design trend I see for 2013 is the use of rustic and industrial pieces mixed into spaces.  They could be used together, although not necessarily.

This living room has a fairly formal feel to it.  The rustic wooden console table and metal lantern, however, work really well in the space and add unexpected touches to the room.

modern rustic living room


In this cozy den, the light fixture and small red stool provide the industrial elements.  All of the wood pieces – paneling, chair, and accessories – keep the room from feeling too cold.

rustic porch


Rustic doesn't always mean wood though.   Try layering textures, like a faux fur throw and a hand woven ottoman, to create a warm and inviting space.

rustic dining room


I love that all of these design trends are so different, yet easily could be incorporated into any home and to suit any style.  I am sure that we will also see many more trends emerge in 2013.

º Will you be incorporating any of these design trends, or others, into your home this year?

Cathy Green Interiors monogram


With Thanksgiving upon us and the hustle and bustle that comes with the holiday season, I wanted to take a few moments today and reflect on a few things that I am thankful for. My Family

I feel so blessed to have a loving and caring family.  They have all been so supportive of my career change, and I am thankful for their love and encouragement.  From my immediate family, to the in-laws, to the extended family, to those near and far, it is such a comfort to know that we have loved ones to share the holidays, and ‘everydays’, with.  I am especially thankful for the little ones – our niece and nephews – who, with their giggles, smiles, and ‘darndest things’ that they say, are constant reminders of the important things in life.

nephew coloring

niece & nephew

My Friends

Old and new, I am thankful to have a circle of friends that are kind, caring, and fun.  There are so many important things to do and be in life, but I truly believe that being a good friend is one of the top things on that list. There is nothing like reminiscing about old memories and making new ones with great friends.  To all of my wonderful friends: thank you for being such a special part of my life!



Yes, I love color.  I get to work with color on a daily basis and I love helping others bring color into their lives.  Color can affect mood, and the right combinations of color can be stunningly beautiful.  I am thankful to live in a world full of lovely colors!


fabric / paint


It sounds silly, I know, but, I am thankful for Facebook.  Facebook has allowed me to reconnect with old friends, teammates, and classmates.  It lets me see pictures of friends’ families and babies, it also allows me to support local businesses and join causes I’m passionate about, and it provides breaking news faster than Usain Bolt can run 100 meters.  From friends that live five minutes away to those that are halfway around the world, Facebook provides a vehicle to stay connected with those we care about.  Besides, where else could I post pictures like this ;)?



Hello, my name is Cathy, and I’m a dessert-a-holic.  It’s true.  I don’t try to hide it.  To me, desserts are certainly something to be thankful for.  They really do make each day a little sweeter!

shyndigz cake

Shyndigz cake

Lastly, I am thankful for you – my readers!  You have been so supportive and encouraging and I am thankful for every reader, comment, email, and Facebook like!

I want to wish everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving – be sure to enjoy the dessert :) !

º What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving?

Cathy Green Interiors monogram


Today marks the one year anniversary of the Cathy Green Interiors blog! birthday cake


Over the past year, I have shared ideas, inspiration, crafts, DIY projects, and much more.  To celebrate the blogoversary, I wanted to recap my 10 favorite posts from the past year.

1.  My first post ~ Sweet Frog Mood Board

Dessert was the inspiration for my first blog post!  I created a mood board for a welcoming blue and yellow foyer.  With a giveaway to Sweet Frog, I hoped to bribe readers into following my blog ;)!

2.  Merry Mantel

I participated in my first link party with our red and silver mantel.  Leading up to this post, I also gave tutorials for the three wreaths (here, here, and here) and for the Pom Pom Christmas Tree.

3.  Cous Cous Inspired Bedroom

Another mood board and another giveaway!  I had so much fun searching for all of the Moroccan themed items for this bedroom.

cous cous inspired bedroom4.  Fabulous Side Chair Facelift

My sister, Beth, and I worked hard to reupholster her antique store find.  I have received numerous comments on this post asking me about her fabric and where to find it (we purchased at Williams & Sherrill); we must have made a good choice!

reupholstered chair

5. My First Guest Post ~ for Saffron Marigold

I was excited to write a guest post for another blog!  Saffron Marigold has so many beautiful hand printed linens, and their Chasing Butterflies bedspread was the jumping off point for this bohemian girl’s chic bedroom.

Bohemian Butteflies Bedroom mood board6.  Dining Room Reveal

Andrew and I spent about 12 hours stenciling our dining room.  Even though it was a lot of hard work, we love how it turned out!

Blue stenciled dining room7.  Style Trend ~ Neon

Neon isn’t just for the 1980s!  It is back in fashion and in home décor.  From pillows and lighting to artwork and accessories, there are so many ways to bring a fun pop of color into your home.

neon pillows


8.  Filing Cabinet Makeover

I made organizing fun by turning a regular filing cabinet into an attractive accent piece of furniture.  This project was also featured on the blog Mod Podge Rocks!

Mod Podged filing cabinet

9.  Color Trend ~ Gray

Gray is the new beige, and it is a wonderfully versatile neutral.  It was fun to search for pictures of gray rooms paired with mint green, purple, coral, and yellow.

gray and purple living room


10.  Chippenham Playroom Project ~ Voting & Dedication Ceremony

Working with A Small Comfort to redo the children’s playroom at Chippenham Medical Center was an honor.   There were so many dedicated people that helped make the room transform into a special place for the children and their families.

playroom art wall

Thank you to everyone who has read, and continues to read my blog.  My transition from teaching high school into the design world has been exciting and I am thankful for all of the support that I have received along the way.

Here’s to another great year!

º  Which was your favorite post? º  Any requests for year two of the blog?

Cathy Green Interiors monogram


With hurricane Sandy passing through, the weather has been gray and rainy over the past few days.  To brighten my mood this week, I turned to my favorite color for inspiration ~ Purple! purple

Tulips / Glassybaby / Lattice fabric

Purple can be used as the main color or as an accent color in any room of the house.  From soft lilac to deep, rich eggplant, there are so many shades of purple to choose from.  And purple isn't just for girls.  Read on for inspiration and to find out how to incorporate this lovely color into your home.

If you’re unsure of using purple, test the waters with a small room in your home.  A bathroom is a great place to start.

Light lavender, sparkly tiles, and a hot pink chair combine in this bathroom to create a space that feels glamorous and chic.

purple & gray bathroom


In this bathroom, a deeper shade of purple, with undertones of gray, is used on the walls.  A wooden bench used as the vanity creates a rustic feel and makes the room appealing to both men and women.  I love the use of the yellow sink that adds a pop of color and interest to the room.

purple bathroom


Purple is a nice alternative to the classic pink nursery.  In this adorable room, the varying shades of purple keep the room from feeling flat.  Also, using accents of yellow, turquoise, and pink is a fun way to bring other pops of color into the room.

purple nursery


Purple isn't just for babies though.  Paired with sophisticated fabrics (stripes & vines) and furnishings (ottomans & upholstered desk chair) this purple bedroom is sure to be a popular hangout place for any young girl and her friends.

purple kid's room


To take purple into the grown-up spaces of the house, try a sophisticated raisin color.  I love the mixture of the modern art with the traditional table and chairs in this dining room.  They combine with the purple on the walls to create a unique and inviting space.

purple dining room


In this cozy bedroom, the deep raisin walls serve as a neutral backdrop.  The rich color allows the golds, blues, and oranges to be the stars in the space.  Checkerboard carpet tiles help to complete the look and pull the room together.

purple bedroom


For this modern kitchen, the black and white color palate is warmed up by the purple walls.  The wood beam ceiling is a charming feature that also helps to keep the space from feeling too cold.

purple kitchen


Bringing purple into the living room or family room may be a bit riskier for some people, so here are a few examples to show that it can work for any family.

A barely-there shade of purple is used on the walls in this formal living room.  The space is filled with neutral fabrics, wood furnishings, and silver accents that work to pull the room together.


Deep periwinkle paint provides the backdrop for this family room.  The ocher leather chair adds a fun punch of color, but I can’t take my eyes off of the oversized wood chest that creates the base for a beautiful vignette.  (Caution: When trying to convince certain males that this this an appealing color choice, you may want to give it another name.  My brother-in-law believes ‘periwinkle’ is better suited for the name of a Care Bear than for a color he would be willing to have in his home. ;) )

purple family room


Here is another family room with deep periwinkle walls.  Like the chest in the room above, this room’s fireplace provides a rustic element to the space.  Soft neutrals, along with interesting accessories and artwork work together to create a room that any family would enjoy.

SR purple family room


º What is your favorite color?

Here in Richmond we made it through the hurricane without any major damage.  My thoughts are with all of the people along the coast and in the northeast who are dealing with the aftermath of this devastating storm.

Cathy Green Interiors monogram

Painted Ceilings

I met with a first time client earlier this week whose house has two rooms with beautiful tray ceilings.  Many people are not comfortable with painted ceilings, so I was excited when she said that they are willing to paint their ceilings.  We chose their paint colors, and I can’t wait to see how they turn out. Painting a ceiling is a way to add interest to a room, and whether you have a tray or not, there are many options to consider.  If you do have a tray, one possibility is to paint the inside of the tray a darker color than the rest of the room.  This is a good option if you have high ceilings and a large room.  The darker color helps to bring the ceiling down and makes the room feel cozy.

dark tray ceiling


Another option with a tray ceiling is to only paint the connecting walls.  This adds interest and detail to the room without committing to painting the whole ceiling.


If you do not have a tray ceiling, try creating one with paint for a similar look.  Barden’s Decorating painted this fabulous ceiling for the 2012 Richmond Symphony Designer Show House.  The colors coordinate perfectly with the rest of the room, and I love the detail of the arched corners.

2010 RSOL Designer House - Master Bedroom

A popular color choice for any ceiling is light blue.  Reminiscent of the sky, even the subtlest hint of light blue can open a room and add an unexpected touch.  Lowering the crown molding a few inches and carrying the blue paint down onto the wall is an interesting architectural detail for this kitchen.  Painting a portion of the wall the same color as the ceiling is a good technique to use when trying to bring down high ceilings.

blue kitchen ceiling


For drama and impact in a room, use a bold color on the ceiling and repeat that same color throughout the space.  In this bedroom, the green from the ceiling is used on the bed and window treatments.  The white walls and wood headboard soften the space and keep it from feeling too overpowering.

green bedroom ceiling


Another high impact option is to use a metallic finish or high gloss paint on the ceiling.  In this beautiful dining room, Melanie Palma created a custom finish for her clients that will actually evolve and change over time as the materials are exposed to the air.

melanie palma ceiling

A fun choice for a painted ceiling is to do it in a nursery or child’s room.  John and Sherry from Young House Love painted their daughter’s ceiling a soft turquoise to coordinate with the window treatments.

young house love nursery

If you are interested in a painted ceiling, but not quite ready to commit to it in a high-traffic room, try one of these three ideas.

1. A painted ceiling medallion adds definition and interest to any dining room chandelier.  Diane Williams painted this one for a client.  I love that it’s subtle, but also unique and personal.

diane williams ceiling2.  Choose a small space like a bathroom or closet to make a big impact with a painted ceiling.  Don’t be afraid to use a bold color or add a pattern.

stenciled bathroom ceiling


3. Paint the ceiling of a covered porch.  It would surely be an unexpected welcome for anyone coming to visit.



The next time you are painting a room, consider painted the ceiling as well.  You might be surprised how much you like the look!

º In which room of your house are you most like likely to paint the ceiling?

Cathy Green Interiors monogram

Color Trend ~ Gray

Gray has been a popular color for interior spaces for a little while now. What I have noticed recently though, is a new batch of colors that are being paired with gray.

colors to pair with gray

Soft, ‘sherbet-like’ colors and gray are a popular combination right now both for interiors and in fashion.

gray mint green & yellow dress


Gray & Mint Green

For years, the popular greens have had a lot of yellow in them.  This year though, mint green has hit the scene in a big way.  It is crisp and cool, and paired with gray it feels fresh and modern.

gray and mint green dining room


gray and mint green living room


gray and mint green bedroom


A few ways to use mint green in a room:

-          Paint a piece of furniture -          Use it as the accent color for a stencil -          Upholster one or two pieces of furniture in a solid fabric or a fun pattern

Mint greens to try:

gray and mint green paint colors

Gray & Coral

Coral is a fun color and can have pink undertones or orange undertones.  It is a softer alternative to Pantone’s 2012 color of the year ‘Tangerine Tango’.  Paired with gray, coral really pops and adds a sense of vibrancy to the room.

gray and coral living room




gray and coral nursery


A few ways to use coral in a room:

-Accent pillows, artwork, and an area rug -As an alternative to pink for a baby girl’s nursery -Fun window treatments

Corals to try:

gray and coral paint colors

Gray & Yellow

The combination of gray and yellow has been popular for a while, but it is still current and I do not see it fading away any time soon.  Adding yellow to any room instantly makes it feel brighter and happier.  It can be overpowering, however, so pairing it with gray is a good way to balance yellow’s intensity.

gray and yellow eat in kitchen


gray and yellow dining room


gray and yellow bookcase


A few ways to use yellow in a room:

-Paint the back of a bookshelf -Paint your kitchen walls yellow -Upholster dining room chairs or seat cushions in a fun gray and yellow fabric

Yellows to try:

gray and yellow paint colors

Gray & Purple

In my opinion, purple looks great with anything ;)!  Try pairing different shades of purple with gray – light lavenders will blend with gray, while deep, rich purples will really stand out and make a statement.

gray and purple dining room


gray and purple hallway


gray and purple living room


This is probably one of my favorite rooms that I’ve seen recently!  I think it was made for me ;): a lavender chaise and lamp, a grey chevron rug, and turquoise chair!  So soft and feminine, yet comfortable and livable ~ I love it!

A few ways to use purple in your home:

-Paint your front door purple – a grey house with black shutters, white trim, and a purple door = wow! -Paint a ceiling purple -Upholster a headboard in a soft, purple velvet

Purples to try:

gray and purple paint colors

Gray is a modern neutral that pairs well with so many colors.  Beiges and tans can still feel fresh, but if you are ready for a change, go with gray.

A few grays to try:

gray paint colors

º What color do you like to pair with gray?

Cathy Green Interiors monogram

Style Trend ~ Neon

Clothing and decorating trends usually echo each other – whatever is hot in fashion, is hot in home décor.  This year we have seen a return to the 80’s with neon colors leading the way. neon inspiration board

neon color board

When using neon colors in your home’s décor, you want to be sure to use it in moderation.  Using too much neon would probably give you a headache:

neon bedroom

I’ve found some great neon pieces that you could easily add to your home.  If chosen wisely, and mixed and matched appropriately, your neon accents would look chic for quite some time.

One easy way to freshen a room is to change out the pillows.  With their modern patterns and fun color combinations, these pillows would brighten any living room or bedroom.

neon pillows

neon pillows

Ceramic animals are everywhere right now.  Choose one or two of these brightly colored birds to add a fun pop on a bookshelf or mantel.

neon ceramic birds

ceramic birds

Pick a piece of furniture – a coffee table, side tables, the back of bookshelves, etc. – and paint it to add a bright color in an unexpected way.

table with yellow legs

yellow table

These hot pink chairs would be adorable paired with a white tulip table in a breakfast nook.

hot pink chair

hot pink chairs

For a unique centerpiece that would coordinate with the white table and pink chairs in the breakfast nook, add a few DIY vases and fill them with beautiful blooms .

neon vases

twine wrapped vases; paint swirl vases & instructions

Another DIY project is to take old frames and spray paint them whatever color you choose.  They can be used to hold artwork or photos, or keep them empty and group them together to serve as the artwork.

turquoise frames

turquoise frames

A brightly colored piece of artwork would surely be the centerpiece of any room.  You can find neon art in any style - traditional, modern, abstract - and in any medium – photos, paintings, prints – so choose one that fits with the rest of your décor.

neon art

green spider mum photobirds photo collage; blue rose; hot pink ampersand; ‘Jardim’ graphic print

Here are two good options for neon light fixtures.  I love the texture on both the lamp and the pendant light.  (Do you recognize the orange pendant light?  I used it in a mood board for a chic girl’s bedroom.)

neon light fixtures

green lamp; orange pendant light

Another way to bring the neon trend into your home is through an area rug.  In both of these rooms, the rug adds a punch of color to the space.  Alternating the floor tiles between bright and neutral colors allows you to switch out the bright ones when you are ready for a change.

neon rugs

purple and tan area rug; multi-colored runner

A few tips for using neon colors in your home:

  1. Moderation is the key!  Find a few fun pieces that will coordinate with the rest of your home.
  2. Neon colors pair well with soft neutrals – greys and tans.  They can also work with black and white.  Depending on the space though, that could be too harsh of a contrast.
  3. Choose pieces that can easily be switched out when you are ready for a change.
  4. Moderation is the key!

º Which neon piece is your favorite? º How would you bring neon into your home?

Cathy Green Interiors monogram

Colorful Front Doors

A few years ago, my mom took a trip to Ireland with 3 of her girlfriends.  They had a fabulous time touring the countryside, and along with many souvenirs and pictures she returned with this poster. Irish front doors

I fell in love with the colorful front doors and knew that when I had a home, I wanted it to have a colorful front door.

So, when Andrew and I bought our house, we headed straight to Lowe’s and picked out the perfect shade of purple (my favorite color) for our front door!

purple front door

When picking out a paint color for your front door, it’s important to keep a few things in mind.

Your front door is one of the first things people notice about your home.  Make it welcoming by choosing a cheery color.  Red is always a popular choice.  A cherry red front door on a white house with black shutters is a classic and timeless combination.

red front door

red front door

You want to be sure to choose a color that compliments the other features of your home’s exterior.  For example, blues usually work well with red brick homes.

blue front door

blue front door

I prefer to have the front door a different color from the rest of the exterior.  It adds interest to the façade of the house and welcomes you and your guests.  The fresh green door on this house is the first thing you notice.

green front door

green front door

If your door opens to a main room in your home, you may want to think about the colors used in that room.  John and Sherry of Young House Love chose a sunny yellow for their front door.  The color not only works with the exterior of their house, but it matches the décor in their front rooms as well.

yellow front door

yellow front door

When thinking about your front door color, don’t be afraid to think outside the box.  I have not seen too many orange front doors, but paired with grey siding and white trim, it’s a lovely combination.  The coordinating flowers and outdoor rug make this space even more inviting.

orange front door

orange front door

Adding a contrasting detail is another way to set your front door apart from all of the others on the block.

pink front door

pink front door

If you’re having difficulty choosing a color, here is a tip I learned from HGTV’s Carter Oosterhouse:

  1. Take a picture of your house.
  2. Print an 8”x10” of the picture.
  3. Cut out the area for the front door.
  4. Place different color paint chips in the opening to see which one you like best!

How to choose a front door color


In the end, you are the one walking in the door every day, so have fun, pick a color you love, and add a unique and recognizable feature to your home!

º What color is your front door?

Cathy Green Interiors monogram