Home & DIY Projects

I painted another thing!

Our room this time.

I have never done a dark paint colour. Grey is as far as I’ve ventured. I am now kicking myself for that because a navy bedroom is the best thing I have ever done with my life ever.

Enough jibber jabber, lets get to the goods. Please insert the requisite poor-photograph quality apology here.


Here is the before before. When we bought our house. Fancy wallpaper and wall to wall carpets and custom drapery and everything.

Then we trashed the place.

2014-11-03 04.14.03

We took up the carpet and tore down the wallpaper to reveal a lovely lavender paint job in some places – and huge swathes of chipped paint in others. Hm. We lived with this sexy flophouse look for a few months. Then I got the hankerin’ for navy. I don’t know from where, but I now consider it divine inspiration.


2014-11-13 23.59.17

I mean COME ON. It’s so delicious!

2014-11-03 04.14.57 2014-11-14 00.07.07  2014-11-13 04.29.03
 2014-11-13 23.59.30 2014-11-14 00.02.16 2014-11-14 00.04.00

The one drawback of a darker wall  colour is that it is much less forgiving to paint with. Any uneven lines or smudges immediately pop out, as do the uneven wall textures that seem to be so common in old houses. It’s hard to notice in person, but imperfections seem to pop in photos unfortunately.

Also: lets discuss the window trim. I didn’t paint it, and don’t particularly want to. Adam is pro-window-trim-painting (easy when you’re not the one actually doing said painting, hmm?) and although I know that it would probably look better white I just….can’t? I don’t know. Help. Is it bad to have mullet-trim like this? Is mullet-trim a word? Tuxedo trim? It defies explanation.

When I posted a shot on Instagram, a few people messaged asking if it made the room feel darker or smaller. Smaller, no. It feels more expansive I think because the colour is so deep. It does feel dark, but not dim, if that makes sense. The colour doesn’t suck all of the light out of the room, the window is so big that it still feels super bright, but also really cozy and rich. And fancy? Is that weird? I feel fancy in there now. Everything looks crisp and suddenly makes sense.

Our room felt a bit hodge-podgy before, but it now looks a lot more cohesive. Like we planned it!

I rescued that sunburst mirror thing from under the porch of a house my sister was renting in Victoria a few years ago. Adam hates it, so naturally I have hung it over the bed in each of our last three houses. One of my other sisters is concerned it will fall off the wall in the night and impale someone. Yet recently I painted it gold, and, concerns about nocturnal impaling aside, doesn’t it look like it was just meant to be there? The mirror above my dresser was my mom’s and I’ve never been able to find a space for it before this house. Even the old white and gold dresser left behind by the original owners looks like it belongs in here, and I had been thinking of it as a sort of “make-do” piece until we could find something better secondhand. It might be a keeper, now.

Oh, navy. Is there anything you can’t do?

Anyway, I’ll shut up- it’s just paint Madeleine!

(The colour is Hale Navy by Benjamin Moore, matched in Behr. And if you are thinking about a navy room or a navy hall or a navy accent wall, DO IT, I say. DOOOO IT)

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  • Reply Debbie Leslie McLauchlan November 15, 2014 at 10:20 AM

    I think the wood on the window frame looks good, especially with the closet doors and the wood floor. Great job!

    • Reply sweetmadeleine November 15, 2014 at 11:16 AM

      See, that was my thinking, too. And since we painted the door trim and baseboards I thought it would be nice to leave it. But now I am not so sure…it does look a bit unfinished maybe. Hm.

  • Reply Allison November 15, 2014 at 10:30 AM

    I spy what appears to be half naked Olive!

    I think I would paint the window trim only because you already painted the door and closet trim so IMO it looks unfinished. Adam is right. Sorry!

    • Reply sweetmadeleine November 15, 2014 at 11:15 AM

      Oh my gosh, you’re right! Thank you so much for telling me – I’ve replaced it.
      (See – I wasn’t kidding about the clothes-aversion, haha!)

      And I think you are right about the trim. Sigh. It feels so horrible painting over nice wood.

  • Reply Jennifer Razzo November 15, 2014 at 10:55 AM

    I would paint the window trim, only because the door trims and baseboards are done…but leaving the door to show off the vintage wood pattern works because they match the floors. The navy works really well with the orangeyness of the wood (they are complementary colours on the color wheel after all). Looks sharp! We have lots of blue in our home to go with all the 70’s wood (including ceiling) in our house. It feels kind of criminal to paint natural wood. (though we’ve done it in three bedrooms and they look better). Have fun with the rest of the house!!

    • Reply sweetmadeleine November 15, 2014 at 11:16 AM

      It DOES feel criminal! But you are also right that it will look better. I might just have to bight the bullet (and prepare for another four coats of paint! )

  • Reply marni November 18, 2014 at 4:11 PM

    Stunning – and I *adore* your dresser!!

  • Reply Jess November 22, 2014 at 4:53 PM

    I just discovered your blog and I had to comment for two reasons… I love the navy! It makes your room look great. Also, your house looks eerily similar to mine. The baseboards in my house look like your ‘before’ picture. I’ve been toying with the idea of painting them white, and after seeing how great your space looks, I’m totally doing it! Looking forward to reading your blog 🙂

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