Ask Maria: I Don’t Like all 4 Walls of my Painted Room, Help!

I received a great question the other day that I don’t think I’ve covered on the blog so here it is.

I was once in a house where the homeowner had painted one wall in her kitchen 11 times. This is a similar situation:

Maria, I have color problem I have not been able to solve.  I painted my walls BM Shaker Beige.  It looks great on all the walls except one.  That wall looks gold compared to the other walls because of the light differences.  I have to repaint this wall because it feels & looks so wrong, but don’t know what undertone I should look for in a new paint.  Was considering BM Bleecker Beige

Any advice for me?

Here is my answer to this question:

Yes, decorate your room.

I’m not kidding.


You are being overly critical because you’re staring at an empty room. You probably won’t notice it when the room is decorated.

If it really is a problem at ALL times of the day and needs to be re-painted a different colour, there is no way ANYONE would be able to correct this for you immediately just by just telling you which colour to try next.

You might be painting that wall 15 times to get it right.

Unless you had my large sample samples and could go through all the undertones to see if you might find one that could work. If you have my large colour boards, make sure you place a big white poster board behind the new colours you are considering, if you don’t, you won’t see ANYTHING. Don’t even bother trying.

If you are comparing a new colour to an old colour, it’s almost impossible to make an accurate colour choice.

Colour changes constantly in the light, that’s the nature of paint.

Related post: How Light Affects Paint Colour

source HC-45 Shaker Beige (Since the coverlet here is more green grey than pink beige, it would not have been my first choice for this white and fresh bedroom.)

What you might be reacting to more than anything else is that it feels a little dated and too dark.

No one is asking for beige right now, ESPECIALLY a mid-tone beige.  The only time I might suggest a deeper beige is if it exactly matched the tile in a bathroom for example, and it’s the ONLY colour that works, but even then, I’d probably still specify a lighter beige because lighter colours are trending right now.

Open up any shelter magazine or start gathering photos you like on Pinterest and you’ll notice what you are probably drawn to, are the fresh, light and blown out rooms.

Source (This room is Shaker Beige but there’s lots of light making it seem lighter and it’s also decorated so it’s hard to be critical about the paint colour).

It’s the reason why white is the hottest colour trending at the moment.

I am speaking to the majority here, of course this does not apply to EVERYONE, however I have not specified Shaker Beige in about 5 years or more.  So what this means is that even those of you who prefer richer, darker colours are still not painting your rooms pink beige. Which is the undertone of Shaker Beige.

So here’s what there is to get out of this post.

If you have chosen mid-tone or darker colours for clients or yourself and no one is particularly thrilled with the result? This might be the reason.

If you have a bunch of colour chips in your house and you are trying to make a decision, what you need to know is that a lighter colour will probably make you happier right now than a darker one.

Over to you my lovelies! Who is in the light and white camp? Who prefers beige?

If you have a question for my Ask Maria column, email me here. Please note, it’s rare (like this post) where I can answer a question WITHOUT photos. To qualify, please send me PHOTOS taken in good natural light, and you’ll have a better chance of it getting in a post if you CLEAN IT UP. Also a generic colour question that has been answered on this blog (like which colour countertops should I buy, or what colour paint will look good in this room) will not be considered.

Related posts:

3 Ways to Use Fresh to Sell Design

3 Ways to Choose a Fresh Paint Colour for your Tuscan House

This Colour Mistake will Make your House Look Bad



leave aREPLY

  1. If I look at my favourite Pinterest décor pics, so many feature white walls! But in our house, white made the house look very dim & almost sick, like it sucked the life out of every room. I hated it. I have one room left to paint, the bathroom, which needs a complete reno. It’s the last white room in the house and it looks horribly dim & drab. I don’t even like spending time in there! When I see designer pics with white walls, 9 out of 10 of those room have huge windows with tons of light coming in. We don’t get that much light. Anyway, I like to use small touches of white here & there.