The Yawning Portal

The Yawning Portal…otherwise known as our front door. Several days ago, we decided to paint it.

Lucky for me, my old boss has a full fan deck of Benjamin Moore paints.

Let me tell you, when you have a lot of painting decisions to make, there is nothing handier. It was so great to be able to flip through all the available colors at home, where the light is actually how the light will be on the paint. Also, we are working with some existing pieces in the living room that we don’t intend to replace. Most importantly, Doug’s grandmother did a painting for him from a picture he took in the Bahamas when he was doing geology field work. Not only is it very masterfully done, it also has absolutely glorious colors, making it a great centerpiece for the room. You can see the actual painting below, but when I was making furniture decisions, I mocked up this so I could see all the colors together.

So that’s basically our living room as it stands now.

Anyway, when you’re like me and read a lot of design blogs and magazines, you get ideas about things. For example, I got an idea about using grey for our living room when I was reading Making It Lovely, a super popular blog by the very talented Nicole Balch about updating her century old bungalow. Two years ago, she did a series using the Blu Dot chairs we eventually decided on for our dining room (more on that later) where she also used Benjamin Moore’s Timber Wolf.

Good color, right? Well, I knew from previous painting projects that I would probably want a slightly lighter color than what was printed on the card so I also got Marina Gray, which seemed a little lighter.
Yeah, so it looks darker here. It isn’t. Look, see what it looks like on our wall?

Ignore the aqua there for a minute. That was a debacle of a whole different stripe. See how even the Marina Gray was too dark? Yeah.

Enter Silver Lake.

And here it is on the wall:

That’s Silver Lake in the upper left-hand corner. I didn’t get a picture of it with the painting, but trust me, it’s better. Doug is going to paint a few more samples on other walls today so we can really get a sense of how it will look, then I’ll buy paint on Friday!

Oh, you’re probably wondering what this has to do with our front door.

Well, we couldn’t very well paint the front door without deciding on the what the wall color was eventually going to be. I knew I wanted something kind of bright and out there, that would mediate between the painting, the Blu Dot chairs, which haven’t arrived yet, and a poster of a satellite view of the San Francisco Bay we picked up at the DeYoung Museum when we were in California last month, which also hasn’t arrived yet. See?

The chairs will make more sense once we get into the kitchen renovation, but for now, just trust that they’ll work.

Let’s look again at the door. By the way, the new poster will hang where the Edward Hopper print is now. The Edward Hopper print may move into the bedroom, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

I believe what we’re looking at here is Sea of Green and some other color that I’ve blocked out because they were so obviously too bright and wrong. Yikes!

In any case, meet the finalist:

Oh, and in case you’re wondering, the trim and ceiling will stay white. Probably White Dove.

The only thing I have to decide now is whether to put a vinyl decal of a dragon on the door. I’d love to, but it I think it might be too busy. So sad.

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