Best Paint Colors

December 9, 2008

Mocha Wall Colours

Q. Our wall colour is sage and we have a parchment sofa and chair, a leather chair and white trim. We have an open-concept living space with cathedral ceilings. We’re looking at a mocha colour for all walls. Please help with colour choice!

— T.H., Fort McMurray, Alta.

A. The neutral leather chair and other furniture would work well with mocha coloured walls, but don’t stop there. Benjamin Moore’s Bennington Gray (HC-82) is a subtle, warm mocha colour that would be a great backdrop for your furniture. Because of the angled ceiling, and since you seem to have a strong natural light source, consider painting the walls and ceiling the same colour. Break it up with cream wainscotting and chair rail, in Benjamin Moore’s Ivory White (925), to give the room more interest, and add a little more brightness.

Add drama and texture to the room by replacing your mantle with a wood surround, painted in the same cream, and topped with a large mirror to update the feel of the room and reflect even more light. Replace the blue drapes with cream-coloured cotton or linen curtains framing each window. Remember to hang the rods at least 3” above the window frame, to give the windows the illusion of extra height, and make sure the curtain panels just touch the floor, to keep the look current. Consider replacing the table lamps with simple, glass or satin nickel lamps and off-white shades, or if budget is an issue, change the look by painting your existing lamp bases black and topping with off-white shades. Finally, a red-toned oriental area rug will frame the seating area and add important contrast to the room.