Paint Color Choices for 2013 Southern Living Idea House

I can honestly say that the great room of the 2013 Southern Living Idea House is one of the most lovely, welcoming, and peaceful rooms I have ever seen.  Although I’ve told you much about it after I first toured the home, I can only now share photos since the August issue of Southern Living magazine is finally on the news stands.


 Photo: Laurey W. Glenn


The color scheme throughout the main house is shades of blues and greens, grounded with lots of warm white and neutral wood tones.  The walls, trim, and ceiling were all painted Sherwin Williams Moderate White SW6140.  The “color” all comes from the beautiful upholstery, fabrics, art, and accessories.  


Photo: Laurey W. Glenn 


The designer, Phoebe Howard, suggests using solid colors for the largest pieces of upholstered seating, then bringing in patterns in window treatments and pillows.  One fabric (in this case, the window treatments) should tie in all the colors in your palette.


 Photo: Laurey W. Glenn


The great room adjoins the kitchen, where the cabinetry and island are painted in a surprisingly dark color: Sherwin Williams Pewter Green SW6208.  The wall color is Oyster Bay SW6206, and the ceiling is Spare White SW6203. I love how the large white glass ceiling fixtures take center stage with the Pewter Green backdrop.

fontanel-idea-house-kitchen-l Photo: Laurey W. Glenn


The effect in this kitchen is lush, warm, and enveloping.  The dark cabinetry looks beautiful with the lighter Calacatta Gold countertops and backsplash.  The light knobs pop off the dark green, as well.


 Photo: Laurey W. Glenn


Phoebe used the same dark olive green on the walls and trim in the cozy study, Sherwin Williams Palm Leaf SW7735.  She recommends starting first with the objects in a bookcase to establish balance, but using mostly books so as not to clutter it with knick-knacks.  For more ideas for bookcase styling, read my article here.  

fontanel-idea-house-study-bookshelves-l Photo: Laurey W. Glenn


The light-filled bedroom walls and trim are painted Sherwin-Williams Olympus White SW6253, while the ceiling is Ice Cube SW6252.


 Photo: Laurey W. Glenn


Word to the wise:  don’t judge a paint color by its name!  You might think a color named Olympus White reads white, but as you can see, it reads light gray-blue:


Photo: Laurey W. Glenn



My favorite bedroom is found in one of the guest houses, or “bunkies.”  The gorgeous wallpaper is Shangri-La Hydrangea (SL-103W) by Elizabeth Hamilton.

southern living idea house hers bunkroom photo by Kristie Barnett


Beautiful spaces and beautiful paint colors throughout!  And as we know, paint color can make or break a design.  If you want to learn how to choose just the right paint colors for your own home, order my Color Workshop Video today!


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Donna Frasca
7 years ago

As much as I love bold color, I also love the soft and subtle hues – I like them all! I particularly like when you can barely notice or feel a color palette as you go from room to room but certainly notice it’s there. These are beautiful and I really like the way the green cabinet plays off the graining in the backsplash. Super pretty!

7 years ago

Phoebe’s work is always gorgeous. Love the bedroom with the wallpaper, but I am over the antlers. Do you still use them Kristie?

7 years ago

Any idea where the stripey curtains in the bedroom come from?

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