Tag Archives: paint

The Future’s so bright, I gotta wear shades! Neon and Fluorescent inspired interiors

Fluorescent and neon inspired interior. Hotel la Belle Juliette, Paris

Fluorescent and neon inspired interior @ decorationtrend.com

Bright pop and neon inpsired interiors by TrustedRegina

Neon pink office @ decoist.com


A lot of times I hear people say they think blue is a cold colour, and that predominant use of it in a room or space, makes the room feel cold and uninviting. I guess technically, or scientifically, blue is a cold colour. But that doesn’t mean that the use of blue in a design scheme makes a room or space feel cold. And there’s blue and there’s blue.

Check out these examples. Would you feel cold or uninvited in these rooms?

Gorgeous living room with blue color scheme

Kitchen with royal blue painted wall


French themed sitting room with powder blue walls

Sitting room with high gloss painted blue walls

Turquoise walls and royal blue furniture combine well. It might be a bit too much for some though


Blue works with modern or retro inspired room designs too

How to make something out of nothing

The other day my husband and I were walking in the Achterhoek, an area in the East of the Netherlands. It’s very green there with many woods and fields. At one point we reached a little open spot in the middle of the woods with a house tucked away in the corner.  The house had the best views of sloping maddows, a bit of a hill and off course the woods. It was for sale.

We are not looking to move anytime soon but one can have dreams right? I poked my hubby in the side and said “wouldn’t that make a dream home?” He shrugged a bit and said the house looked a bit too boring. Granted; the house is not spectacular, but I was hoping he could look past that and spot the potential.  We argued a bit as I am really bad with people not agreeing with my taste and I pointed out a few of the possibilities. You can paint the house white, add a porch, redo the garden, maybe even add a conservatory. Somehow he was not convinced.

I thought I’d try to show him, and others among you who might not be able to see through things, what magic a lick of paint and a few personal touches here and there can do.

Let’s take this rather dull house for example.

Dull house, lovely location

Dull house, lovely location

On the market for ‘just’ € 472.500, andlocated in the very heart of the Netherlands, in Wilnis. This small town is a mere 15 minutes drive from our capitol Amsterdam and about the same distance from another large city; Utrecht. It has wonderful views to both the back and front, a large and deep garden, a garage and plenty of room for extensions to both the front and the back of the house. As it is there are three bedrooms, one downstairs, a wash room, a large and sunny living room, a kitchen, a garage and plenty of storage. But we’ll start with the exterior.

Let’s see what happens when we paint the brick walls white, the woodwork black or dark blue, add a porch, a dormer and make it spring (God bless Microsoft’s Paint tools!) We need to get rid of those ugly wintergreen trees and bushes. They are by no means indigenous to the area and look out of tone in this anything but woodland surroundings.

Same house, same location

Same house, same location

My photo editing skills are limited, but I’d say this is a dramatic change. Don’t you agree?

This could do magic if you want to flip the house too!

It would be such a great challenge to actually do this in real live. I am going to try to redo the back of th house too and show the results here. Maybe I’ll even have a go at the garden!

Here the back and the garden as they are now. Let me think what you would do or change!

Back of the house

Back of the house

I think two classical double doors would make a good start. Maybe a conservatory?

The garden

The garden


This is the garden as seen from right by the end of the garage. It has so much potential!

*Sigh* one day……….

UPDATE: To see altered photographs of the back, check here!

Choose paint colours online with pictures of your own room

paint-rollerIn a DIY store or paint shop, colours look so different from when you actually put them on your wall. Also, that hint of egg shell tint that looks almost to faint to notice in the shop can make your bedroom look like a giant Easteregg when all walls are painted. Another mistake often made is that relatively dark colours can make rooms look smaller. The contrary is more true; colours that are to pale and lack any contrast make a room look not only smaller, but also darker. Shadows appear much more grey and grim on light colours such as yellow and white than on dark ones like red and darker blue. Especally in darker rooms. Don’t be afraid to paint north facing rooms in darker colours. It will likely add more warmth and depth to your room than a lighter shade will. Currently all our walls downstairs are white. We still don’t know what colour to paint them, but some of the walls will get a contrasting lick of paint.

Online there are several websites to help you choose the right colour for your own home. Many of them offer tools that allow you to ‘paint’ walls online to check the effect of certain colours. Most of these make use of stock photography of rooms in a variety of styles. An example is the  Sherwin-Williams visualizer. Below a picture I used from their, limited, options.

Courtesy of Sherwin-Williams

Courtesy of Sherwin-Williams

They do have an ample palette of colours available to choose from, but all rooms look more or less the same to start with. What I really like about this site is that the fields to paint are clear and lines and borders are recognized by the tool.

A Dutch initiative is Kleurinspiratie.nl Here you can upload your own photographs so you can see what works and what doesn’t in your own interior. By dragging and dropping paint in a bucket to your wall, the tool fills fields with the colour of your choice. Shadow casts and electricity cords work as borders so it takes a while to ‘paint’ entire walls. Also, somehow the tool does not recognize paintings or other decorative ornaments such as lamp shades as it tends to paint those on the way too. There’s an eraser function to get rid of excess paint.

I had a lot of fun ‘painting’ the wall in my stairway, my bedroom, loo, kitchen and living room. The last one is pictured below.

Left is actually the painted wall

Left is actually the painted wall

As you can see drawing a straight line is a bit hard, but it does give an amazing impression of what it would actually look like. I really like the colour actually. As you can see it does not make the room darker at all, despite it being a pretty hefty dark colour. We were thinking of using this colour in our bedroom but it doesn’t look good there at all! 

Check the site here and give it a go yourself. All paint colours used are widely available and are part of the collections of some of the biggest interior magazines in the Netherlands.

Other, mainly American equivalents are to be found here, here and here.  All work with stock photographs of standard rooms per theme. The last one charges a small fee to upload your own photograph.