little birdie

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read - Farrow & Ball Decorating with colour


Long time readers of this blog will know that I like to paint. Not watercolours or oils, but walls, doors and ceilings. I find it very relaxing to get my paintbrush out and freshen things up around my home. Usually this involves a quick coat of pure brilliant white but recently I've found myself drawn to a more muted palette of colours. 

Interior design books have played a big part in influencing my design choices at home. I find so much inspiration from them and useful tips too. I'm currently reading the latest title by Farrow and Ball called Decorating With Colour. Simply beautiful to look at, it's also full of advice on which of their colours to pair together and which finish to use in all areas of the home and garden. I have become a huge fan of F&B, it's seriously the nicest paint I've ever worked with and the finish is exquisite. In the last few months our front door has been painted in Downpipe and the frame and windowsills with All White. An upcycled shoe cabinet has been given a new look with Mole's Breath and my absolute favourite colour of the moment is Railings, which I painted my vintage chair with (see top image). But I was unsure of which colours I wanted on my walls for my living room and hallway and this is where the book has really inspired me.

The book is divided into three distinctive styles - classic, contemporary and country. Each featured home has detailed paint colours and wallpaper designs. There are tips for painting floors, furniture and a 'neutral groupings' section to help match colours. I found this helpful for combining a pale shade with darker accents. 



I was particularly taken with John Nicolson's house. Simple with a modern rustic feel, his home is a beautiful palette of greens, blues, greys and off-whites. Although it is much larger and a period property, there is still much to take from the colour scheme and transfer to my own home. I do like the combination of the walls painted in String and the woodwork panelling in Card Room Green. I've always stuck to the same colour of emulsion with eggshell, but I'm loving the idea of taking a different approach and bringing two shades together like this.


I also love the industrial vintage style of the home above with it's bare brick wall teamed with Shaded White, Eames DSW chairs and a huge refectory style table. It's stunning and in other pictures from this home, the radiators have been painted in my beloved Railings. They work so well together. And the second image is taken from the author's own home. It's a beautiful modern country dwelling with lots of blues and off whites, but I particularly liked this dresser painted in Mouse's Back and finished with the tomato red anglepoise lamp.


I'm also planning on updating our shed next spring. It's a lavender shade, which is pretty, but it needs redoing and I'm loving the idea of painting it with Railings like in the image above. The colours of the verbena bonariensis against that inky blue black background are stunning. So that's my goal for next year.

After reading the book and staring at the paint chart for quite some time, I have decided on the shade I like for my living room and hallway. I'm heading off to buy the paint this weekend. But I'll save that for another post..... x


Written in collaboration with Farrow and Ball. All words and opinions are my own.