This past week I had an ‘A ha’ moment. I have been working in two homes that are both full of honey oak. One home I’ve been working in has their renovation project happening in phases. Last week Phase 2 officially started. The current phase that I’m working on is the kitchen and part of the adjoining family room. This entire home project I’ve called ‘Warm and Cosy‘. You can see Phase One here.
I have been working in another home for a couple of months pulling together their new kitchen design as well as creating an entire new foundation palette for their home. This home is getting everything done all at one time. This entire renovation will roughly take 12 1/2 weeks to complete. I’ve called this project ‘Honey I’m Gone‘.
My ‘A ha’ moment came this week as both homes started. What was my ‘A ha’ moment?
Cream Colour Paint: Laying the Foundation
Warm and Cosy
When I started this home renovation project with my clients, we knew the work would be done in phases. In preparing for all of the phases, the foundation palette needed to be solidified so that all choices moving forward would be based around the foundation palette. Mrs. Client loves the warmth of the honey oak but doesn’t want the honey oak. Mr. Client is not convinced that all of the honey oak will go. When I heard Mrs. Client say that she loves the warm colours, we started to look at cream (white) colours. When we started to look at all of the cream colours available, Benjamin Moore Mascarpone was the stand out. It wasn’t too clean and crisp and it wasn’t too yellow (like some creams can be). We talked about how all of the baseboards, casings and interior doors would eventually be painted Mascarpone (when we got to those phases). We also talked about the kitchen cabinets being Mascarpone as well.
Honey I’m Gone
When I started to work with Mr. and Mrs. Client, we had the discussion about their honey oak and what they wanted to do with it. It was made clear that it all had to go. When I went through my processes with them, it became clear the style that this couple were drawn to. When the paint samples were brought out to look at, there was one clear winner. Benjamin Moore Mascarpone! We talked about their new kitchen cabinets could be Mascarpone, their oak feature wall and built in bookcase could be painted Mascarpone (with the back of the bookcase to be painted a darker colour), and all of the honey oak woodwork could be Mascarpone. They loved the suggestions so moving forward, their new foundation palette was going to be cream. Just so you know, this entire home is not going to be all Mascarpone. The kitchen is going to have a darker wood stained island and their honey oak floors stained a darker stain.
Cream Colour Paint: A-ha!
Honestly, it wasn’t until last week (as both projects started at the same time) that I connected the dots and had the ‘A ha’ moment. Holy shit – these two homes were both getting the exact same foundation palette! The little designer in me said, “Oh no way! How creative is that?” I’m so glad that the little diva designer doesn’t stick around in my head very long because I believe it’s not my job to create a space to pad my portfolio. It’s my job to give my clients what they want BUT ensure what they want will work with what they have (or what they’ll be getting).
Cream Colour Paint: Why it Works
Here is why I think a cream colour palette works so nicely with these two transitional homes. Most often than not, I have to work around some kind of fixed element in a home. In the case of ‘Warm and Cosy‘, the possibility of having some of the honey oak stay is one that I have to work around. The soft warmth of Mascarpone works well if that is to happen. Just like Goldilocks, Mascarpone is just right! It’s not too white, not too yellow, but just right. For ‘Honey I’m Gone’, there is carpet that is staying (in the family room and the formal living room). It is a fairly earthy colour and I have to work with that. Mascarpone looks stunning with that carpet!
As both projects are well underway, I’ll be posting updates on my Facebook page if you care to follow along with this journey of the 2 honey oak homes.