All About ReDecorating
What A Difference Some Paint Makes!


What A Difference Some Paint Makes!

No matter how many decorating shows you watch or magazines you read, it’s often difficult to resolve your decorating issues. Because you’re viewing someone else’s home with their furniture and accessories and not your own, it sometimes can leave you more confused, with more questions unanswered.

In my experience, when people see a great idea but aren’t sure how it will work in their home or how they should implement it, they get frustrated. For example, I’ve been involved in situations where a client loves her furnishings, but is unhappy with the way a particular room looks. Another major dilemma I’ve witnessed is choosing the right color for a room. Many homeowners find it difficult to decide on a color because they’re afraid of making a mistake…so instead, they end up doing nothing.


Here is an example of a home where the owner loved her furnishings, but felt her living room wasn’t warm or inviting and wasn’t living up to its full potential. In addition, she was uncomfortable choosing a color for her walls that would pull the room together. In reviewing her room (see “Before” photo), I noticed some decorating mistakes that needed to be corrected to help create the look she desired in her personality and style. Keep in mind, the photos taken show exactly what was done that day…later I recommended new items if I thought they were needed.

First of all, (in the “before” photo) the room was lacking a conversation area. If you notice, the two chairs are next to each other and off to the side from the sofa, so there was no intimate grouping. In the “After” photo, we moved the sofa and placed it more kitty-cornered in the room.

Next we placed the two side chairs opposite each other, which immediately created a conversation area. For the time being, I suggested that the end table and lamp that were originally in the corner be placed in between the sofa and a chair, creating better lighting for that area. In the future, I recommended she purchase two matching table lamps and two end tables on either side of the sofa that would bring better balance to the room and add much more lighting, something that is definitely needed. For more drama, I placed a silk floor plant behind the sofa and suggested she place a spotlight behind the plant that would lighten up the corner and create great up-lighting, as well.

“By rearranging the existing furnishings, changing the color of the room and purchasing a few items to complete the look my client desired, a dramatic transformation was created with very little investment. ”
—Jan Girouard
interior designer


Another problem in this room was the improper use of artwork. The larger painting on the right wall was not in good proportion to the artwork on the left wall. Also, it was important to line up the paintings to give more balance to the room.

The solution: We removed the larger painting and replaced it with two smaller pieces she had in another room that better complemented the other pieces in the room.


When my client mentioned that she felt her living room wasn’t warm and inviting. I immediately thought color! Because both her furnishings and carpet were white, I knew that adding color to the walls would make a dramatic difference. Instead of choosing a color by picking up the small swatches from a paint store, I was able to actually show my client how her room would look with the color she’d chosen, without actually painting the walls.

Benjamin Moore has a fabulous software package where you can download a digital photo into your computer. Then you can “color” the walls, or any surface, and immediately see how your room will look. It’s so powerful to see the actual color in a room with its furnishings, versus painting a small area. Choosing color this way will take the stress out of the process and help you avoid making mistakes. Even though my client eventually went with a very soft taupe on her walls, she was able to see how other colors could change the dynamics of her room and instantly create a different mood.

By rearranging the existing furnishings, changing the color of the room and purchasing a few items to complete the look my client desired, a dramatic transformation was created with very little investment.

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