Designer Recommendations - VanFossen

The information in this blog post is taken from a FREE consultation for a client.

Dining room / kitchen / sitting area: The biggest goal in this area is to take the 3 connected areas and merge them into 1 cohesive unit. The dining area is darker than the kitchen & sitting area and so the question is, “how do we paint the space?” In the dining area, wainscoting was built in to enhance the room. The red paint that is currently on the wall is liked, but the homeowner feels that it makes the room feel dark & was wondering if the red would look better on the bottom (meaning painting the wainscoting red) and the top of the wall was painted a lighter color. The dining area is approximately 11x11. There is also a little closet area off of the dining space. The homeowners would like the wall paper removed and the walls painted the same color as the dining area. They would also like the door painted. In the kitchen, the homeowner would like the small spaces above the cabinets painted, along with the space above the washer & dryer. The sitting room, which is right off of the kitchen, is approximately 8x10.

Usually when I make a suggestion for a color scheme, I base it off of a piece of art, a loved possession or some distinctive feature in the space. In my opinion, the dining and sitting spaces will need to be tied in with the color scheme of the kitchen - seeing that it was recently remodeled & is quite beautiful. This means that we will need to carry black & white into the dining & sitting rooms. I’d remove the red on the wall and just use red accents in both of the rooms instead. To help you out, I searched for a few things on Amazon. This should help you to better visualize the space. Each of the recommended pictures on the following pages have a hyperlink attached to it. All you need to do is to click on the image and it will take you to the product that is shown in this pdf. (The original interactive PDF was sent to the client and does not work with this blog post. Please email us at for the link to any of the items you may see in this post.)

Moving right along, I have 2 color scheme options for these rooms...

OPTION 1: The one color that I recommend for the dining area is Benjamin Moore Elephant Tusk (OC-8). I believe that by placing Elephant Tusk on the walls in the dining & sitting areas, as well as in the nooks in the kitchen, you’d get a gorgeous look. This color is part of the Off-White Color collection. Inherently sophisticated and endlessly versatile, the Off-White collection offers subtle nuances of whites that suit tranquil, serene environments as well as creates color-enhancing accents for dynamic spaces. The wainscoting & all trim colors would match the white that’s already used on the cabinetry in the kitchen. I’m basing this wall color off of the 2 rugs that I have selected from amazon. Once has red trim & the creamy color in the center and the other has the creamy edge with black in the center. I like both, because they both contain red. I like the black, because it will tie in with the kitchen & rocking chair (which is in the sitting room). I’d use a red & gold table runner with white flowers and gold candelabras. The red & gold will tie in with the chairs and the white will tie in with the kitchen. In the kitchen you will need to add some red, so a red orchid by the sink or on the island would be a nice touch. A red blanket or pillow in the sitting room will finish the look.

OPTION 2: Once again, I would paint all walls in the 3 parts of this space a creamy white such as the Elephant Tusk. I would also use black to trim the top rail of the wainscoting (see picture that follows) and the same withe from the kitchen to paint the wainscoting. I would use a black & white table runner & a piece of art (such as the poppies) over your low cabinet. I would take the poppies that are currently on that piece of furniture & move it to the dining table. You can use the color from the artwork or centerpiece to embellish the sitting & kitchen area. If you’d like to add a rug, I’d suggest something lighter, such as white with a black edge or one of the rugs I found on Amazon.

If you’re not too keen on the cream and black treatment to the walls, might I suggest Benjamin Moore’s Grasshopper (AF-415). This color is part of the Affinity Color collection and would be stunning with the black & white kitchen. I noticed that the entry rug has this color in it & so I would think that this color should be in the running.

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