The *Perfect* White Wall Color & HAPPY BIRTHDAY JAMIE!

Before I get to the nitty gritty of my post today I want to wish a very happy birthday to our lovely, sweet, amazing Jamie!  Today is her 30th birthday! We celebrated over the weekend with lots of good food, wine and cake (chocolate cake + chocolate frosting per her request).  I hope today is a marvelous day - just as marvelous as she is!

image found here
Last week, you saw my white and cream test squares on the walls in my living room.  I know a lot of people prefer to paint their test squares on white posterboard so the paint is not right on the wall, but in my case, I find painting the squares on the wall motivates me to make a decision and paint the room faster.  So last Friday, I decided it was time to start on the big transformation in the living room.  Here are the before pictures:

The color on the wall wasn't bad at all: it was Wool Skein by Sherwin Williams (and that color is in almost every room in the house).  It's a nice neutral and very much reminds me of the Parisian Taupe (Behr) that I had in our first house.  But I wanted a change and I really want a soft tone-on-tone living room with lots of white and cream and oodles of texture.  I decided to give Lowes a try for paint and once there, I went with Olympic One (paint and primer in one).  I was a little nervous: I know that taupe paint can be a bear to cover and I was going white ... but I hoped it would be a two coat job.  The color on the wall was matched to Sherwin Williams Alabaster.  Here's a shot of the room in progress.

I am happy to report that Olympic One is terrific!  It took just two coats to beautifully cover the walls.  I like my paint to feel a little thick, and while Olympic One isn't quite as thick as Sherwin Williams, it has a good consistency.  I'm beyond thrilled with the end result  - both the paint and the color I chose.  Alabaster reads a little grey in my living room, which is just what I wanted.  I wanted the room to feel white but not stark white. And, as I hoped, the Alabaster makes the taupe furniture feel cooler and greyer in tone, which will add to the flow of the house once I paint the entryway, hallway, kitchen and den varying shades of my favorite grey.  In person, the color is a little lighter than it appears in these pictures.   Enough chatter, here are the after shots of my living room!

I set things up as much as I could.  I moved the white and cream rug from the den in here and it works much better.  I covered the taupe pillows that came with the couch with striped pillow covers from IKEA (I think I paid about $4.99 for each of these - steal!).  The large cream and blue pillow is from Pottery Barn, but I'm not sure if it will stay here. I brought in the lamps and set up the tables.  I'll also paint the coffee table white.  Oh, see the green chair?  I found him for $15 on Craigslist.  I'm going to paint the frame white and reupholster it.  The green patterned pleather just isn't doing it for me.  I know ... 

So for now, I tried to temper the green with some pillows.  I'm planning to paint the white side table next to the chair, too. It's from IKEA and I think it was about $20.  It's a little too ... something.  Boring? Outdoorsy? I don't know.  But I want to make it look a little more special, maybe with a metallic finish.  

Oh while I was at it, I tackled a small project.  The floor by the couch was a little worn in one spot.  See?

Nothing a little Old English scratch cover can't fix! Love this stuff! Here's the after.

So there you have it!  I painted the room solo and it took me from 8-12:30. I broke for lunch and then from 1-2:30 I set up the room.  Next up, I have to build my desk from the door, figure out the curtain situation and add lots of accessories! Can't wait.  What do you think? Any suggestions?

See you swoon,


  1. Love the color! It's so crisp! Love the chair, it has great charachter, can't wait to see the re-do!

    Happy Birthday to you.....Happy Birthday to you....happy birthday dear Jamie, happy birthday to you.....

  2. It looks great! And that Old English stuff is amazing. Can't wait to see how you pull it all together once you tackle your other projects.


  3. The new wall color looks great. I love how everything pops against it now.

    Happy Birthday, Jamie!

  4. Lookin good girl!!!! Love the wall color and gotta love old English!!!!

  5. Nice job! Can't beat old English. . . . Everything is looking very nice!

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    ~Mikey @ Shabby French Cottage

    See my kitchen featured in September 2011's Romantic Homes magazine!!!

  6. Love the alabaster walls, what color did you use for your baseboard trim?

  7. Hi! The trim is Dover White by Sherwin Williams. It's not a pure white - has a lot of cream in it.