Keep Calm and Carry On .... turned out to be good advice.  Our first day in London I injured my knee.  The question became: stay there injured or go home...?  We applied ice packs, Advil, and anti-inflammatory medication - and prayer - and decided to stay.  We rented a wheelchair and changed a few plans.  My DH was amazing - pushing me all around London, which is not that wheelchair friendly and was definitely an adventure.  It could have been a disaster - but the group we were with was amazing, DH was amazing, and how can London NOT be amazing?  Even in the snow.  In a wheelchair.  

Here is a question from a reader who narrowly escaped real disaster:

Love your blog and your advice.  We had a fire in our home.  Luckily no one was hurt, but I did lose my kitchen (less than 6 yrs old) and new bathroom (less than 1 yr) and due to smoke damage every room needs to be repainted.  My family calls me the beige queen and I'm hoping you can help me change that.  My house is approx 1500 sq ft split level, 3 bedrooms, 1 bath.  Living room and kitchen on main floor are open to each other, bedrooms on top floor, family room on bottom floor.  I did old world in my kitchen.  Now I want to do shaker cabinets with white Grecian marble backsplash.  Would love marble counters but I am afraid of etching.  Now looking at white princess quartzite.  Would like any suggestions you may have for paint colors.  Thank you.

Oh, so sorry to hear of the fire and losing your kitchen and bath!  Here's to fresh starts and forgive me for taking a little long to reply - things have been busy in my neck of the woods!

Benjamin Moore REVERE PEWTER wall color
Would your shaker cabinets be white as well?  Or wood toned?  If we are considering white cabinets, white back splash and white counter tops - we may need to choose a different wall color than if you have a contrasting cabinet color or wood.  So, I'll give you a couple of options that should go with both all white or wood toned cabinets.

With the gray-tones in your choice of marble, a wall color in a gray or with a gray undertone is your best bet.  Happily, that also removes you from the dreaded realm of beige.  
Sherwin Williams SEA SALT wall color
Staying in the gray realm does not necessarily mean drab.  Revere Pewter is warm and inviting and changes magically throughout the day - always beautiful- and goes nicely with your marble and counter top tones.   Sherwin Williams Sea Salt (above) is a difficult to describe delicious color - somewhere between robins egg blue and gray.

Benjamin Moore COVENTRY GRAY
Coventry Gray is a perfect neutral for adding those pops of color.  Looks wonderful with white.

Benjamin Moore REVERE PEWTER
And while I am aware the photo above is NOT a kitchen, it does show now nicely the Revere Pewter goes with the gray and white of the marble.

For the Love of a House
Benjamin Moore GRAY OWL

Gray Owl and all of the above colors work nicely with wood tones, as well, in case your cabinets are finished that way.

Benjamin Moore GETTYSBURG GRAY cabinets
If they are not wood toned and you are open to color on your cabinets, Gettysburg Gray is a lovely choice, as is Rockport Gray below.

Benjamin Moore ROCKPORT GRAY cabinets
Rockport has a slight green undertone, but as you can see, still looks great with gray veined marble.
Whatever your choice, you can't go wrong with some bright accents, a good splash of white, and textures to warm up the kitchen.  Good luck.


I have a question. I've always wanted a red kitchen but I don't know if it will go. My cabinets are wood color, I have a wall that's Is part chimney, my floor is linoleum; it's kind of white with gray and the counter tops are a very light brown I want to say its almost beige. Oh and dining walls; half of it has white wood going long ways only two walls. Please help me with a color .    pcuna88

Dear Pcuna88,
I don't know if I can answer this accurately - do you mean by 'part-chimney' that it is brick?  or just painted like a wall?   Are your cabinets cherry toned, yellow oak, pale birch, or mahogany?  Even wood cabinets have undertones, and reds can have blue or orange undertones.  Without a photo, it would be hard to recommend a specific color.  There are other ways to have a red kitchen than wall color.  To be safe, I'd say to go wild with red in your accents. 

 If you have stools, paint them red or cover the seats in a red fabric or red pleather.  Add a red tile back splash.  Dunn Edwards Crisp Muslin is a similar color to the wall color above.

Benjamin Moore Kendall Charcoal wall color (similar to above) is a good color to go with red for high contrast.
Another wall color for red accents - Manchester Tan Benjamin Moore 

  Add red bowls filled with fruit, tea towels, curtains and accessories in reds. 

 You might add a red pendant light or art on the wall with red as a predominant color. 
 To make it extra dramatic, add white and touches of black into the equation.  As you can see, accents can add a little, or a lot, of color. 

If you would like more specific help, send me a photo!   Good luck.

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