This is a sponsored review from BlogHer and Valspar.


Am I the only person who chooses paint colors based on their names? I mean, I can’t be, right? Judging by all the suggestions you guys gave me for my bedroom walls last week, I’m not the only one won over by the wonderful-sounding Birdsong Blue, the evocative Wet Pavement, or the whimsical Roaming Pony. Must be the word nerd in me, because I do this with nail polish too: ah, Sweet Aubergine sounds so delightful, who cares if my new manicure makes me look like I’ve slammed my hand in the car door?

So first of all, thank you so much for all the many paint color choices you gave me last week, and congratulations also to Keenie Beanie, winner of last week’s $100 gift card to Lowe’s. (May you dance in the aisles of Lowe’s, Keenie Beanie, buying all the home hardware you need!) This week, we’re going to take a look at some of the colors you chose for my new bedroom, narrow them down a bit more, and give away a second $100 gift card to someone else. If you need a refresher, here’s the post where I showed you my gloriously blank white-walled bedroom and begged for your help making it look better.

Now that you’re all caught up, let’s look at some of the choices. The problem---if you can call it a problem, and I don’t really think you can—is that Valspar just has so many colors I’d like to use; I’m fairly sure I lost a whole morning of my life playing with the Virtual Painter tool and I still wasn’t any closer to making a decision. Luckily, however, you guys stepped in like little Lisa La Portas—that’s an HGTV reference, for those of you who don’t have a DVR crammed with home decorating shows (who are you?)---and gave me a few ideas. It was interesting, actually, to see which colors cropped up again and again. Here are a few of my favorites you chose:

Valspar Colors

What do you think? Any particular standouts? I’m drawn to the Mark Twain House Ombra Gray (English majors unite!) but is it a little too green? I must admit to being rather in love with the High-Speed Steel and I'm curious to see how brown Semi-Sweet would be in real life. Almost Charcoal would look great with a glossy white---our bed, linens, and bedside tables are all white---but would I need another accent color as well? In that case, the pretty Homestead Resort Spa Aqua might be an interesting choice; gray, turquoise, and white is certainly a palette I’ve used before. Wait a second: am I trying to make my bedroom look like my wedding invitations?

To refresh your memory, here’s the blank and boring bedroom in question; it’s small-ish (it’ll fit our bed, bedside tables, a dresser, and likely another small chest for our---gasp! Cover your ears, bedroom purists!----flat screen television), but it gets great light, it has a lovely view onto the backyard, and I love the original 1943 hardwood floors.

It's cozy and calm and I think—with the right color on the walls---we could really make it something.

And for further inspiration, here's AB Chao's bedroom, which I think is one of the loveliest bedrooms in the world. I even met her this weekend and told her so. She didn't seem as creeped out as I worried she might be.

Anyway, here’s how it’ll go: leave me a comment below and let me know which of the colors above floats your boat and rocks your world (or find one you like here), and---just like last week---you’ll be entered to win a $100 Lowe’s gift card, thanks to BlogHer and Valspar. (You don’t have to spend it on paint, obviously. Me, I’d probably put it towards a shiny stainless steel dishwasher, but I have become boring and domesticated in my old age. You might want a grill or a hammock or dining room chandelier, you wacky young thing, you!) No duplicate comments, please, and you can read the official rules right here. The winner will be chosen at random and notified by me, and next week I’ll show you which color we decided to go with.

So what do you think? Any of the above take your fancy? Almost Charcoal? Metropolis? High Speed Steel? And we can’t forget about Roaming Pony, obviously. But remember: don’t pick them just for the names. That’s how I once ended up with a chartreuse kitchen.


Aug 11, 2010

Ooooo I lurve Homestead Spa Resort Aqua and Metropolis! Hmm, I need to find something to paint...

Aug 11, 2010

I'd go with the Almost Charcoal..I think you'd be happier with a darker vs. lighter color, in light of the bedroom you said you loved. Also, Mark on Clean House said that a darker color actually makes a room look bigger, contrary to popular belief. Good luck!!!

Aug 11, 2010

I think your color combo of gray and aqua is a great choice! By the way, I loved your wedding invites and your turquoise shoes and earrings! (I may have to borrow your clever ideas for my own wedding day, someday - hope you don't mind!)

My color scheme vote for you is semi sweet and the homestead spa resort as your accent color!

A Little Coffee
Aug 11, 2010

Oooh, I like Muted Ebony the best and also Almost Charcoal as the two standouts for me. I like all the rest as well except Beguile and Roaming Pony; I think those two are too purple.

Aug 11, 2010

I love metropolis, but a couple of these are reading identical on my screen right now.

Aug 11, 2010

I'd go for Muted Ebony. I'm a sucker for a dark bedroom with white linens.

I love AB Chao's bedroom, and I always remember that paint color's name: Drainpipe.

Aug 12, 2010

MarkTwainHouseOmbraGray : it's gritty and grey, but not too dark. Sadly, you don't have 20 million windows like AB Chao. Just one (beautiful) window = make the most of your sunlight... you want the room to be grey like you mean it, but not cave-like (I think). On names alone? Roaming Pony! Too delightful...

Aug 12, 2010

Mark Twain House Ombra Gray!! I love it. I think it will look perfect with white linens and furniture and it's light enough that the room won't feel like a cave.

Aug 12, 2010

High-Speed Steel is definitely my favorite. And not just because of the name...but partially! It's not too dark, not too light, and just gray enough, if that makes sense...and would look fabulous with turquoise!

Aug 12, 2010

i like the almost charcoal- what a great way to help decide. we just repainted our entire downstairs and i could have used the help for sure!

Aug 12, 2010

I'm with you on the Mark Twain House Ombra Gray. We once painted the whole living space in our house gray. Kitchen, living room, stairs and even the laundry room. It was a nice change away from white blah.

Aug 12, 2010

I like Almost Charcoal the best, and I don't think you'd necessarily need another accent color.

Aug 12, 2010

I don't think Mark Twain looks too green. It's hard to tell, though, and I wonder if it's dark enough for what you want. If that one doesn't work, maybe the Almost Charcoal?

Aug 12, 2010

Just have to love Roaming Pony. But maybe that's because that is the exact color that I am hoping to paint my master bathroom. That little touch of purple.. so perfect.

Aug 12, 2010

Almost Charcoal, definitely. In fact, I think I may need to go get that swatch toady and tape it up on my wall...hmmm.

Aug 12, 2010

The Almost Charcoal is perfect. Mark Twain is too green, poor guy.

Aug 12, 2010

Almost Charcoal - it's sophisticated but young, urban and contemporary all at the same time. Love it!

Joanna Huke
Aug 12, 2010

Almost Charcoal without a doubt.

Aug 12, 2010

I like the almost charcoal but if you want darker like the bedroom shown, then muted ebony would be a better choice.

Aug 12, 2010


Aug 12, 2010

Definitely Mark Twain.

Jen @ das Sushi
Aug 12, 2010

I like Beguile, myself. Looks soft and warm...perfect for a bedroom!

Aug 12, 2010

My vote is for metropolis. I love it so much, i might use it to paint my bedroom!

Aug 12, 2010

I love the Mark Twain House. In fact, I may use it in my dining room now!

Melanie Munroe
Aug 12, 2010

I like the high speed steel and the homestead aqua myself. I like the idea of the aqua as an accent color! Can't wait to see how it turns out!

Aug 12, 2010

I vote for Almost Charcoal or High Speed Steel. I don't know much (um, anything!) about decorating other than what I've watched on HGTV, but it seems like if you use one of the lighter grays it could end up feeling too industrial after a while, or just too gloomy. The darker gray is very sophisticated.
Really, though, I don't think any of them would be a big mistake!

Aug 12, 2010

I vote for Almost Charcoal or the Mark Twain House. The Mark Twain House does have the far superior name.

Aug 12, 2010

Definitely Almost Charcoal, I agree. But I like the idea of adding some Resort Aqua: maybe on the ceiling?

Aug 12, 2010

I like the Mark Twain color - I don't think it's bad to have a little green in your gray if that's going to be the primary color in your room (plus I love the woodsy feel of it, being a little bit of a country girl myself) but I think if you gravitate towards the almost charcoal plus spa aqua then you should really do it.

Aug 12, 2010

I can't get the word 'beguile' out of my head now - such a great word! And such a lovely color. It looks warm (as much as anything can on a computer screen anyway), which is something I generally go for in a bedroom, and I think it would look nice against white linens and curtains and the gorgeous hardwood floor. And you'd get to think 'beguiled' every time you went in the room - win!

Aug 12, 2010

Almost Charcoal. I think it would look perfect with white linens. Darker does make a room look bigger.

Aug 12, 2010

I LOVE the High Speed Steel! I think you it's bold and clean and with a white down comforter you could change out your accent color anytime you like! Brick red, sunny yellow, sky blue, sage! The possibilities are endless!

Aug 12, 2010

Almost Charcoal!
And, I think you should use your signature color, turqoise for your accent color!

Sarah Hill
Aug 12, 2010

I vote for the Almost charcoal. However, if we are going on name alone, Roaming Pony wins. Just wait until you go into the Lowe's store and see the wall of Valspar paint chips, I think I lost several days to that wall when we were picking paint colors for our house.

Melanie D
Aug 12, 2010

I really like your idea of using the Almost Charcoal with the green color and your white. Somehow it will seem so clean and calm. Just what a bedroom should be!

Aug 12, 2010

Oooo, a toss up between Mark Twain and semisweet for me. Of course, I'm a person who decorated our living room to match our wedding invites, so I urge you to accent with turquoise.

Aug 12, 2010

I love AB Chao's bedroom, but that room has high ceilings and a lot of windows which I think helps the very dark walls not look too dark and gloomy.

I too love the Mark Twain House color (in fact, I think it was one of the colors I first suggested), but I also really like the lighter gray- Metropolis. Good luck!

Aug 12, 2010

I can't get over Almost Charcoal. Think it would look fabulous with those gorgeous (enviable!) wood floors.

Aug 12, 2010

My eye keeps going back to Almost Charcoal. I thought at first you should go with a lighter shade, but now I feel certain this is the color your bedroom calls out for.

Aug 12, 2010

I really like the Mark Twain House Ombra Gray. I don't see it as too green, but maybe when it's the size of a room it would be? That's the hardest part of choosing paint. I wonder if Valspar makes wall size swatches?

Aug 12, 2010

I'll put down a fiver on Roaming Pony for the win, please.

Aug 12, 2010

I really like the Almost Charcoal. It looks like you have beautiful molding in the room and it is dark enough to make the molding stand out but not so dark that it is oppresive. And it gives you a lot of coordinating options. Good luck.

Aug 12, 2010

I vote for Semi-Sweet. I think the brown tone would be pretty with the floors and compliment the woodsy view out your window.

Lauren Beaver
Aug 12, 2010

Oh it's so hard, first I think "definitely..." and then switch to the very next one, but for now I'm going to say definitely Almost Charcoal!! It's gorg!

Aug 12, 2010

I think roaming pony and beguile might come out really purple once painted on a large wall- we have friends who have an accidentally purple bedroom after choosing a very similar shade. Which: if you like purple, excellent! But I'd vote almost charcoal.

Elizabeth in Chicago
Aug 12, 2010

Almost charcoal!!!

Aug 12, 2010

I'm still loving the high-speed steel! And I think a turquoise accent would be perfect!!

Aug 12, 2010

Mark Twain House Ombra Gray! The color and the name are great.

Aug 12, 2010

Homestead Spa Resort Aqua!

Aug 12, 2010

The Mark Twain House Ombra Gray, it's a great mid-tone and would allow for a lot of different accent colors.

Aug 12, 2010

Almost Charcoal!

Aug 12, 2010

I'm going to have to go with the Almost Charcoal. I had a friend recently paint her kitchen what was supposed to be a light gray, and it totally looked like a lilac in daytime lighting. She knows that the first thing her husband is going to say when he comes from his deployment with the Marine Corps is, "Why do we have a purple kitchen?" Learn from her mistakes.

Aug 12, 2010

Try the semi sweet? I need to look at that one myself. I have chosen Jekyll Sans Souici Green for our master bath to accent the new brown tile. (what is with that name?) I was thinking of doing the bedroom in something more neutral but bold. Part of the bath is kind if open to the BR so it should compliment.
Oh and all of this? Remodeling? Pinhole leaks un our copper pipes flooded the upstairs bath and down into the wall below! Fun in home ownership.

Aug 12, 2010

I do think Almost Charcoal and the aqua blue would look great together!

Aug 12, 2010

I just painted my dining room Muted Ebony, and it is pretty much the best thing I've ever done. It's delightful. I'm not sure what that says about the level of excitement in my life thus far, but it really was very satisfying. It has totally transformed the space, and it shows off the antique ceiling fixture and light trim beautifully!

Aug 12, 2010

I vote for high-speed steel, but you should probably get a few and try them out on your wall to see how they work at various times of the day...I mean that would be the practical thing to do (not that I've ever done that).

Aug 12, 2010

Stay away from Metropolis! Our living room and dining room were painted this color in our new house, and it was so institutional and depressing! My suggestion is something like Mark Twain House Ombra Gray or High-Speed Steel - something a little bit warmer.

Aug 12, 2010

Mark Twain House!!

Aug 12, 2010

Muted Ebony all the way!

Aug 12, 2010

Hmmm...I like the Mark Twain with the Aqua best (maybe the little bit of green really helps?). What about an aqua ceiling??

Chris in NY
Aug 12, 2010

Homestead Acqua and Metropolis. Your room is smaller than AB Chao's and might feel claustrophobic, especially in the endless twilight which is sometimes Bay Area weather.

Aug 12, 2010

Almost Charcoal - with the Homestead Spa for an accent... Gorgeous! I need to paint my living room - I surely could use a gift card!

Aug 12, 2010

Mark Twain with the Homestead Spa as an accent.

Meghan B.
Aug 12, 2010

Love "Almost Charcoal." We used something similar in our home and went with yellow accents.

Aug 12, 2010

I'm drawn to the Metropolis and the Mark Twain Gray. I love the Aqua, too, but I don't think it's right for a whole room. For me, the other colors are just too dark and depressing, which is not to say that they wouldn't be perfect for you. I just can't see them on a bedroom. Perhaps do the wall behind the bed in Almost Charcoal and the other walls in Metropolis? And white baseboards and window/door trim. Then use an aqua for accents elsewhere in the room. If you want one color on all of the walls, then Mark Twain gray it is!

Aug 12, 2010

I would go with either Metropolis or Mark Twain House Ombra Gray. The others are very dark, and, as compared to AB's room, you don't have as much light coming in as she does to counter that. I think either of those two greys would be plenty dark and dramatic and cozy.

Aug 12, 2010

Mark Twain
Mark Twain!

(But I'm biased; I'm from Missouri.)

Jesse B.
Aug 12, 2010

I really like semi-sweet. It would also look great in my office!

Aug 12, 2010

i still love high-speed steal, but i also like metropolis.

someone once told me every color reads much darker up on walls, so always go a shade lighter than the color you want. i'm not sure if that's hooey, but wanted to pass it along.

Aug 12, 2010

Almost Charcoal is calling out to me!

Aug 12, 2010

Well, I do LOVE the Homestead Spa aqua, but that's mostly because A) I've been to The Homestead and it is FANTASTIC and B) I insist on having a blue bedroom and this is as close as my options allow. But! For your purposes, since you want a dark color, I would choose Beguile (which sounds like a bad perfume) or Semi-Sweet, because I think they would match the floors the best.

Aug 12, 2010

I love that Beguile!

Erin @ Fierce Beagle
Aug 12, 2010

Almost charcoal is my vote.

Aug 12, 2010

Mark Twain House. I think it will go with just about any other color scheme you would choose for bedding, furniture, etc.

Aug 12, 2010

I'm ineligible for the gift card, but I can't resist giving my opinion! Beguile and Roaming Pony would be OUT for me - too red.

Anything you paint is going to appear darker on an entire wall than it will on a tiny swatch, so I'd stay away from the four darkest colors.

That leaves me with Homestead Spa Resort Aqua, Metropolis and Mark Twain House Ombra Gray. Of those two, I choose the latter.

Aug 12, 2010

* Of those two gray options, I choose the latter.

Aug 12, 2010

Mark Twain House. I think it would go with just about any color scheme you might pick for bedding, etc.

Aug 12, 2010

Metropolis is by far the best.

Aug 12, 2010

I still think muted ebony - you're right about the Mark Twain being too green. I'd pair with it all your white linens, etc. and maybe accent with some bright pops of color - a couple bold pillows or a nice, soft, tufty turquoise armchair, maybe?

Aug 12, 2010

Mark Twain! With a name like that, how can you not?!

Leslie M.
Aug 12, 2010

I vote for Mark Twain House Umbra Gray, followed closely by Almost Charcoal. I don't think I'd go any darker than that since your room appears to have a little less light than your inspiration room.

Aug 12, 2010

Almost Charcoal or Mark Twain, definitely.

My one piece of advice is to look at a paint chip under the kind of bulbs you normally use. I picked out colors for my new place by the light in my old one, and the fluorescent bulbs my landlord has in the new place make my pretty, soft green look...toothpastey. Ouch.

Aug 12, 2010

I think you'd be thrilled with Semi-Sweet. :) Good luck with the painting!

Aug 12, 2010

i love metropolis for my own bedroom (not as much light as yours) but really am digging almost charcoal and high speed steel for yours! i think they would look excellent with the white furniture and you could rotate your accents throughout the year for a splash of color.

Aug 12, 2010

i love metropolis for my own bedroom (not as much light as yours) but really am digging almost charcoal and high speed steel for yours! i think they would look excellent with the white furniture and you could rotate your accents throughout the year for a splash of color.

Aug 12, 2010

I love the Almost Charcoal. And I especially love the hot pink pillow on the white chair in what I agree is an absolutely gorgeous room.

Aug 12, 2010

I love Homestead Spa Resort Aqua. So light & airy!

Aug 12, 2010

Ooh, Mark Twain House Ombra Gray gets my vote. Lovely shade AND a lovely name.

Laura B.
Aug 12, 2010

My favorite is Homestead Spa Resort Aqua, but thats because I'm not a dark color wall person. If I were going with a grey though, the High Speed Steel would be my choice. Can't wait to see the results!

Aug 12, 2010

High Speed Steel is my pick. I think it would be just the right shade of gray to help the white pop.