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The Battle of the Grays

I used to be someone who you might call, "confidant with color." Picking paint colors was pretty much simply a matter of thinking I wanted, say, a green bedroom, and going to Sherwin Williams and choosing one I liked. Perhaps the turning point for me was when I met Cheryle who is really, really confidant with color. Now, when I want to paint something Bruce says fine but why not consult with Cheryle? And so I do, but not before going through a big rigamarole first!

I did tell you I wanted to have the house painted didn't I? I felt the same way in November 2009 when the house looked like this:
Before that, when we moved in, it was peach with white trim, and forest green doors. I had it painted sage when that color was all the rage. This photo also shows the big oak that used to be outside Bruce's office window before we had to take it down. :(

During the height of the recession, when we were fortunate to escape any hardship, I decided to go light on the house. Calling Louis, our painter at the time, I said let's do it. He, having suffered greatly through the recession, was ready to work the next day if I would buy the paint. Stopping by the Benjamin Moore store, I picked up a leaflet, looked through it, and said to myself--here's a beautiful color scheme. Three days later the house was done.
Aside from the awning not matching, I was in love.  So, we made a new awning cover, which was a good match color-wise, however, in spite of being outdoor fabric, it did not wear well, so I had a new one made, choosing from my options. No green in the awning to match the door, which I ignored until the middle of last year when I went electric blue on the doors, which was a mistake.

Which leads me to the "battle of the grays." Most of the time Bruce lets me do whatever I want as far as the house goes, but this time he voiced an opinion, saying he'd like to go dark, and gray. Well, who knew there were so darn many grays to choose from?
This is merely a fraction of the chips I picked up from various sources! By the way--when did grey become gray?

The paint colors run the gamut from those that look blue, and those that have green, or brown in them. Decisions, decisions. This time I'd like to get a look I could be thrilled with for years to come, so I became tentative. Who me? Yes, me!

Scouring the web for ideas, every site I turned to insisted it was best to paint some on the wall to test it in various lights, although, seriously, it can't look great in every light can it?  Anyway, I had a lucky stroke when I went to our local Ace Hardware to pick up more Benjamin Moore cards. As it turned out, they were having a special on paint, including 99 cent sample cans, rather than $4.99. I had him make SEVEN, and while he was doing so, he had to add colorant to the machine. I just knew you'd be as interested as I was to see the inner workings,
The only thing about having all those samples is what to do with them now that I have them because I only used a tiny bit...
One was too blue, one looked like a battleship, others were lighter than B wanted. At first I was in agreement about using the dark charcoal color pictured under the second shutter, until I thought about our pool furniture, lighting fixtures and really, we have a brown gravel roof.
The white box you see is the brains behind making chlorine from salt for the pool. Anyway, the more I thought about it, the more I thought I should use the one that looks almost taupe, albeit, a very dark taupe, as well as being called Ashley gray. Then I started thinking about the shutter color etc. Out to the garage I went to find the color I wanted to use on the kitchen cabinets. Remember how everyone vetoed that idea?  Perhaps I could finally use it on the shutters?
The reddish color is another one I found in the garage that I love for the door, but no one else does. Who would no else be? Why Cheryle, who brought Catherine along to both see the house, and commiserate. The one on the left is the Ashley Gray; the Chelsea Gray is on the right. I mentioned Cheryle being a color expert, and if you've forgotten why she is so, I'll remind you that she had a design firm in Chicago before moving to Orlando. So, what did she think? Ashley Gray!

We are going to have Herbert paint it, and because he is so busy helping Bill, among others, it will be a few weeks before he can get to it, leaving me with too much time to second guess myself. We shall see. Now what to do with all that paint???

Speaking of Cheryle, Bruce went to a guy thing at Bunker's house on Friday night, so I went over to Cheryle and David's for dinner. Of course they had other guests, not to mention airbnb guests. Never a dull moment over there! I've taken scads of Angel Trumpet tree photographs but never one lit up at night, and covered with blooms. Magical...
While we were eating in the dining room, her guests from China were in the kitchen eating as well. What a delightful group! The girls are called Happy and Joy.
It was such a pleasure meeting them. The lady on the right is in America for a year as a visiting professor of computer science at Auburn. Her daughter is Happy, with the bangs, and Joy is her cousin, the daughter of the lady on the left. Joy has come to live with her Aunt, and her Mother is here for a visit. What brought them to Orlando? Theme parks baby, the theme parks.

There is a growth explosion going on here, as is probably the case where you live as well--it is Spring after all. The tree we planted to replace the one above is getting big!
Another change I'm making is painting the fence the same as the house color to have it blend into the landscape better. The awning will have to go and what I'll paint the bench is anyone's guess. Live and learn. Did you know you can always click on the photos in this blog to make them bigger? What prompts me to tell you is the waning Tabebuia tree on the right side which only two weeks ago was that mad yellow!

We've got another oak tree that Bruce tells me he nurtured from an acorn--it has become so large it is moving in on the adjacent pine tree.
You know, when you have an older home, there is always something that needs attention, really, it never stops. I am ever so grateful we can afford to do so.

Do you have a favorite gray?

The market calls.....unlike last Sunday when the weather was sunny and 90 degrees, today's forecast is sunny and a high of 70--perfect!


p.s. Here is an amazing two minute video that is both inspiring, and beautiful, using color like mad. P
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