Farrow and Ball paint and things lurking under the stairs.
This week I was browsing a paint department, and happened upon a discounted 5L tin of Farrow & Ball’s ‘Brinjal’ matt emulsion. This leaves me with 2 thoughts:
a) I need to get out more and stop loitering in paint departments when I have free time.
b) Loitering in paint departments can be seen as serendipity when bargains are to be had.
Anyhow, onto the paint… This is the most intense dark aubergine with red rather than blue tones, and I have always dreamt of doing a room in it. Like an Olympian athlete I launched myself toward the paint pot it at high speed, and clutching my bargain I sped home. I also managed to secure some bargains on some anthracite emulsion paint on sale, which have been stashed until I decide what to use them for, no doubt they will appear soon in a post…. (and if you don’t want to read through the procrastination and details, scroll down to the bottom of the post for the before and after photos.)
This is what the colour look likes… wow, it’s dark…
Photo: Brinjal by F&B photo from Farrow and Ball Decorating with Colour by Ros Byam Shaw
The Existing Room
The Master bedroom is already shades of Khaki, (this paint is called Drab), with aubergine accents, but it has been like that for quite a while, so I thought I would use the paint to overhaul the room. The ceilings are really tall, and the expanse of white from the picture rail upwards to the ceiling sort of annoys me, as the rest of the colours get lost in the room as the eye automatically goes up to the brightness and it is so WHITE. I love aubergine, so decided to paint out the khaki walls with the new paint, but to leave the wardrobes as they are. So I am sort of reversing the colour scheme. I am happy with where the furniture is and accessories, so it is just a case of the walls and woodwork being changed.
So I started to paint the walls, and also used the same colour on the skirtings and the picture rail. This was finished with a matt glaze for protection. I love the unified look this gives and it is a bit more modern that traditional white skirting. In fact, why is skirting usually white anyhow?
But this painted skirting and picture rail made the white area from the dado upwards even more glaring, Could I dare to take the Brinjal up to the ceiling? I know my favourite interior designer Abigail Ahern advocates going all over walls and ceilings with dark colours, but this is so intense and I felt I would be lost into a black hole if I went that far! To be game, I had a try, but was not mad on it as there is no cornicing and it looked odd meeting the ceiling without a definitive moulding break. So I went back to a pale shade, but toned it down from white with a putty colour that I found loitering under the stairs, (thank mercies for my paint obsessive collection and loitering in paint departments). This works against the khaki and the aubergine now.
The windows, radiator and window frames are all white. One radiator is an original Victorian one, and I did not want to start covering it with the same aubergine as I find the paint cracks and start to look messy after a while with emulsion, so I left them as they are. The windows are a bit of a conundrum. When we moved in I inherited double glazing set into the original wooden surround. The white plastic bits would look dreadful painted and I know they would chip. So I decided to paint just the surround, but not in Brinjal, this time in a khaki tone to keep the colour going around the room.. yet again I found a pot of eggshell under the stairs left over from when I originally decorated the room. It is of the same colour family as the wardrobe paint but a shade lighter. Not sure why I ever bought it, but now it turns out to be very useful!
The Finished Results
I have lots of lovely textiles and accessories in the same two main colours.
Even the lamps have aubergine shades.
The room looks very moody now, I love it! It’s like sleeping inside a cup of hot chocolate. I also got a bargain on ebay with a new blanket chest to go at the end of the bed, (only £10, no one else bid, hurrah!), and unlike its predecessor no dust can get inside. Plus a snuggly new jute rug from Ikea to keep my toes warm now that we finally are hitting winter temperatures. The final seal of approval came from my cat Mr George, who immediately decided this was a good place to sleep.
Before & After