Colour lesson

Bad Design Advice: Fall in Love with All Your Finishes


  Statement tile, Herringbone Carrara {House Beautiful} Pattern quota done. Keep your countertop solid or almost solid. {Source} I had an interesting conversation with one of my readers while I was consulting on her kitchen renovation. She had already installed tile floors in her kitchen and couldn't decide on a countertop. She had some options selected, but she told me, "I'm not in love with… Continue reading


Make Something Ugly almost Disappear with Disney's "Go Away Green"


I know it seems like I'm on vacation AGAIN! Because I am. . . with my adorable nephews in Disneyland this week. However, this vacation (which included a three day cruise from Vancouver to LA) was booked months ago. It's Markus (6) and William (8) first time in Disneyland and Terreeia and I didn't want to miss it! Maria & Markus A… Continue reading


Mixing Metals: How to Update a Brown Kitchen by adding Brass


Barbara built this house with her husband 5 years ago ago. He wanted a wood stained kitchen and although she'd love to have a white kitchen now, she wasn't prepared to paint it in this phase of the decorating project.

Her biggest complaint was with the pendant lights, they created a lot of visual glare and she wanted them replaced.

Also, she needed drapery to block out the sun in the wintertime when it slanted through the windows. Continue reading


How Becoming a Certified True Colour Expert™ Changed My Business and My Life


I'm in Atlanta at the Withit conference this week. My first guest post in the True Colour Expert™ series is from Sheri Bruneau! October 2014 was a total game-changer for me. That was when I was fortunate enough to attend Maria’s Specify Colour with Confidence™ course in Vancouver. Before attending the course, I worked with real estate agents, organizing and… Continue reading


7 Ways to Make the Most of What You Already Have | Before & After


Crystal called me to help her pull together her new house. This was her request:

"I used to have a colourful condo. Oranges and yellows have always been a favourite of mine, and in the last 5 years, I’ve loved pinks. I hired a designer about 6 years ago, and I guess she was successful at convincing me that colour was kids' stuff and neutrals were sophisticated.

So out with all my stuff and in with the new. Cream, chocolate browns, and greens. I found it bland and lifeless, although yes, very nice and sophisticated. So I started adding pink with Designers Guild bedding, decorative pillows, etc. I also bought some whimsical paintings with colour punches (I’ve attached photos of them)."

I was very impressed by your colourful portfolio and would love your help."

See the before and afters here. . . Continue reading


Warning: Rant Alert on The Tackiest Advice Ever


I'm not usually this cranky, but I recently came across some of the fluffiest, dumbest interior design advice I've ever read. Continue reading


The Easy Way to Decorate Around a Tan (Pink Beige) Sofa


If you've been reading this blog for awhile, you know there's nothing neutral about a pink beige sofa. You also know that pink beige is so EVERYWHERE that it's probably not your fault if you have it in your home. There's just too much of it out there. Here's how to decorate around it so it looks intentional. Continue reading


The Minimalist Guide to Decorating with Charcoal


Photos by Maria Killam Recently, I had a consultation with a client who needed help creating a colour palette for her new home. She didn't want to make the same mistakes she had made in the past and was looking for a plan. She sent me this inspiration photo for her house:  {via pinterest} I spent a few minutes asking more questions to make… Continue reading


How to Take Charge of Your Bossy Tile


When we walked into our room at the Fairmont Vancouver Airport last May, I declared, "This room was decorated BEFORE the brown trend!" It's a game I like to play with anyone who will listen everywhere I go. What's the dead giveaway? The colour of the wood-stained furniture: it was all orange and yellow with no espresso brown in sight. This… Continue reading


Where to Start When You Have a Blank Slate


Jacqueline called me and said:

"Help! My laundry room is finished, it's white, I followed all the advice on your blog right down to copying the shelves in your laundry room, but now that I have a white Maria Killam laundry room and I can do anything I want, I have no idea where to start!

What colour should I paint it? I painted it BM Grey Owl because I had some leftover paint but it's doing nothing for me!"

I said, "First, Grey Owl is almost like a neutral, muted blue/green grey that would look great in a bathroom with lots of blue grey marble that coordinated with it, but for your laundry room to look fabulous, it needs a colour! Continue reading


Vancouver Web Design and Website Management by: Coronation Internet Marketing Ltd.