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Decorating & Furniture/Color to match light oak cabinets and gray counter

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Question
Hi, I recently purchased a home with a very open floor plan.  The living room, dining room and kitchen all flow into one.  There is white ceramic tile throughout.  The kitchen cabinets have recently been replaced and they are a very light oak color.  The countertops are a darkish gray speckled color with the light brown/blond trim that matches the color of the cabinets.  The kitchen has only one window in it that was closed in before we bought the home because an addition was added on the other side of that wall.  I recently painted the living room Toasted Pine Nut (Sherwin Williams), that color was also on 2 of the walls in the dining room.  The kitchen has one wall that extends out to the dining room and then 2 small walls in the kitchen (very small kitchen).  All appliances and trim are white.  The third dining room wall and all painted space in the kitchen I painted Sherwin Williams Baquette.  I was planning on adding Mountain Stream as color for the closed in kitchen window and then adding glass shelves to that space.  Once I put the Baquette on the walls my kitchen got very dark.  Also, I don't think it matches very well with the grayish counters.  I'm at a loss now as to what colors to go with.  My kitchen table is light brown/blond wicker with glass, my living room has darker oak tables with darker wicker baskets and chocolate brown leather furniture.  Again, white trim throughout.  I am very in to earth tones, browns, and beachy colors (but not a ton of pastels).  Sorry for so much info and thanks in advance for any advice!!!

Answer
Hi Gina,

Thank you for writing, and.. congratulations on the purchase of your new home.  

Here's the thing... mixing oak and gray give you a very cool tone in the room.  Adding such soft hues, without any real color, can put a strain on your decor.  Too much of a job for the color do.  If you add some pigment, maybe a soft green, a cool green, one that has some gray and/or blue undertones, NOT yellow undertones, it will add a nice contrast to all of your beige tones.  A soft true sage green will continue your earth tone palet, yet give you something to play off of.

Best of luck to you,
Julie Henry
Julie's Interior Designs
Hackettstown, NJ
908-684-3900
www.juliesinteriordesigns.com

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Julie Henry

Expertise

In the past 22 years, I have assisted countless residential (and some commercial) clients in the design and decorating of their homes. Within reason, I can assist on ANY question for the interior of your home. From design of a new home or addition, to layout, color, truly custom window treatments or just accessorizing... as our brochure says... from ceiling to floor, windows to walls and EVERYTHING in between... if it is for the Interior of your home, call Julie's Interior Designs. Well... you don't have to call, just write and ask!

Experience

With twenty two years of experience, 18 of them self employed with a large showroom/retail store and great staff on my team, there is little I/we haven't encountered. For several years I enjoyed being the on air "Home Editor" of the local cable station and have written a column in several local newspapers for years. Taught Interior Design at the college level. My work has been published in numerous magazines and newspapers. This is the greatest job on earth, and not nearly as easy at it looks...

Education/Credentials
William Paterson College, NJ, Ramapo College NJ, Continuing Education with trade periodicals, etc.

Awards and Honors
Multiple for custom window treatments, best local business in our county (located in northwestern NJ,) best home furnishing store in our county, etc.

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