Can Gray be Dirty? Yellow Exterior (Before & After)

Pinterest As many of you know, over 4 years ago, Terreeia and I bought a house one hour East of the city of Vancouver so we could live close to my Sisters, my Nephews and my Mom. Now that I’m talking about my Mom, a few months ago I mentioned that she was looking for a mobile home but it was as a second home, she wasn’t moving up North, some ... Continue Reading

How to be Smart in a World Filled With Dumb Colour Advice

There’s a conversation out in the colour trend world that colour is moving back to browns and warmer grey tones in the realm of mushroom or driftwood, and cocoas and caramels. First, it’s important for you to understand that colour trends move slowly for people who are not in the industry. So that means brown is not coming back anytime soon. I haven’t specified anything remotely close to brown for any of my clients for years. ... Continue Reading

Three Questions to Ask Yourself When Choosing Exterior Colours

Today's guest post is from Patsy Overton from Atlanta, Georgia. She's seen far too many homeowners choose the wrong exterior colours, so she has a three-step process that'll save you from making the same mistake. ... Continue Reading

An Expert Rarely Specifies Anything like Vanna White

When I was a new designer and I had to choose a sofa for a client, I would show up with my binder full of every sofa style available. Then as I gained more experience, I realized that doing that made me look like I had no idea which sofa was the right one. And looking back, I mostly didn't. I was hoping my client would choose to take me off the hook. It works the same with paint colours. If you hire a designer or colour consultant and you are left with 10 (or more than 2) different shades of neutrals or colours to test for one room or one exterior? Well, she (or he) doesn't know which one is right either. ... 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

How to Choose Paint Colours that Work with Your Lighting

I recently received this question from Shelley, asking how useful it would be to custom mix a paint colour to get it right with the light in her home. “I’ve recently used BM Manchester Tan in a pantry that has a large fluorescent light fixture, and it looks lovely — right at the happy intersection of warm and cool. But in our front entry and hallway (which are criminally devoid of any shred of ... Continue Reading

“I’ve Got This” and Other Unrealistic Thoughts about Renovating

So, just in case you were wondering and losing sleep over this topic like I have, I’ve figured it out. The third week in my Renovate with Confidence™ Focus on Finishes for Renovations and New Builds is coming up and it’s my best work yet! Now that I’ve organized all the advice I’m constantly giving my clients into a step-by-step format, the good news is, I’m adding stuff I thought I’d forgotten over 15 ... Continue Reading

Aimee’s Happy Home Makeover: Before & After

This weekend Irene's sister, Aimee experienced a makeover so big that by the end of the day Saturday, she said to Irene "I never understood the term 'eye candy' until this happened to my house. Now, everywhere I look, there's something pretty to look at." ... Continue Reading

6 Biggest Colour Mistakes I’ve Made (Been there, Done That)

Love this vignette I was invited by Style at Home to be on a Twitter chat about colour a few weeks ago and one of the questions the editors asked was “What’s your biggest mistake choosing colour” and I immediately chimed in with “I have a few” and immediately listed three: So here they are, with a few more just for fun: 1. The first mistake happened during one of my very ... Continue Reading

Take Risks with Your Decor Rather than your Clients

In 2011 when we were living in our townhouse in North Vancouver, I chose the wrong fabric for my new chair and ottoman. I was so embarrassed. That’s why it’s taken me this long to tell you about it. I had my yellow sofa (above) and that was an easy choice for me to make. I love yellow. But I was having trouble actually committing to a second colour. Designers hate making ... Continue Reading

Uncommon Goods Giveaway

  I love finding websites with unique and funky, off-the-beaten path items, so when uncommon goods approached me to do a giveaway worth $200, I thought it was a great idea. UncommonGoods is an online marketplace offering creatively designed, high-quality merchandise at affordable prices. Their mission is to support and provide a platform for artists and designers and in fact half of what they sell is made by hand. Uncommon Goods donates ... Continue Reading

How Often does Lighting Change the Undertone?

One question I get a lot during my Specify Colour with Confidence Workshops is about lighting, what it does to colour, how to manage that effectively, etc. Basically the answer to that question is this: If you notice that the colour you chose went pink beige (or the wrong beige/grey) in the lighting, the possibility that you actually chose the wrong beige is much greater than the light turned the ... Continue Reading

Should you pay for a room to be re-painted if you chose the colour?

This post is for anyone in the business of specifying colour. And the question is: “Should you pay for a room to be re-painted if the colour you recommended either looked terrible when the room was done or the client simply didn’t like it?” This was the question posed by the wonderful bloggers at The Skirted Roundtable this week. Having completed hundreds of colour consultations in my design career, I ... Continue Reading

Authenticity. . . the currency of the Future

‘We know it when we see it, and we love the people who live it—the ones we can count on, always, to be brazenly, exhilaratingly themselves.  In the age of spin and truthiness, authenticity is the real deal: speaking up for what you believe in, refusing to be ruled by the desire for acceptance, listening for the difference between the impulses that move you and the fear that holds you ... Continue Reading

Vancouver Colour Expert talks about The 3 Ways to beat the High Cost of buying the Wrong Paint Colour

Paint stores will not like this post; however the recycling depot will. Did you know that 40% of paint purchased ends up being the wrong colour? I would much rather that you hired me to pick the right colour in the first place (of course 🙂 or that you go back to the paint store to tweak it if it does end up the wrong colour. So, can your paint ... Continue Reading

Happiness is. . . Being Uncomfortable

Making the comfortable decision keeps you from reaching your potential. Comfortable is doing the same exercises over and over again and not getting any thinner.  It’s the person who won’t speak in class unless she’s called upon.   It’s the easy road, because it only takes you to destinations you’ve already been.   monica o’brien In the courses I was in years ago, the talk that really stuck with me was when ... Continue Reading