Decorating & Furniture/Paint colors


Hi Rachel,

We have recently moved into a new house with all white walls and an open floor plan.  It has lots of windows looking out onto beautiful prairie.  We long to add some color, so have just started painting.  We have an open entryway with light terra-cotta colored ceramic tile.  

Off to one side of the entry is the living /dining room.  We have dark wood furniture with the upholstery in light neutral creams and beiges.  The area rug is also in creams and beiges.  We decided to paint the room in Halcyon green from Sherwin Williams (a sage green with some blue in it) and are doing the ceiling in a color 3 shades lighter.  We are doing one accent wall in Bay Red also from Sherwin Williams.  We are really liking how this looks with our existing furniture and artwork. Our problem is in deciding what to do with the rest of the first floor.  

On the other side of the entry is our family room/kitchen.  (all in one large room) It has light oak hardwood floors.  The cabinets are white and counters are a gray with some black to give a granite-type look.  The area rugs have reds/golds/dark teals and blue. Our family room sectional sofa is a brown and black chenille.  We think we would like the same halcyon green in this area as well, but are worried it might be too much of a good thing.  If we did that, we were thinking of painting the bay red on a small wall behind some shelves above a desk area.  What is your opinion?

Also, we are searching for the right color for the entryway and the open stairway that leads off it to go upstairs.

I hope this makes sense.

Thanks so much for your help,


Dear Kris,
   I think that too many different colors on the wall in one general area can look to hodge podgy, so I would continue the red color on an accent wall in the family room and the paint the rest of the wall the same green color to make it balance with the living room. I would paint the stairwall the same color. You can always add decorative pillows and accessories to tie the space together. Please send images to if possible so I can give you a better idea of what to do.

Hope this helps,

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Rachel Mallon Allied Member ASID


I will answer any questions concerning interior design and decorating. I can help with color, furniture placement, material choices, and much more. I am more than happy to help people. Please email me with questions and concerns. Decorating may not be as easy as it looks and with a little help from me you can improve your living space. Check out my decorating blog Room in a Book Blog
If you are looking to redo an entire room in your home and want professional design assistance please visit Room in a Book


Experience: I have a bachelors degree in Interior Design. I have worked for West Elm and Kitchen Kaboodle and I recently worked for an Interior Design firm in Portland, OR. I currently work as an Interior Designer in Maui, Hawaii. Room in a Book

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