Today I received an email from an MG reader wondering if I knew the paint color that was in Audrina Patridge’s bedroom?


Dear reader, unfortunately I do not…however, I am so glad you sent me the link to these photos from In Touch magazine of Audrina’s Hollywood Hills home.  I can’t tell you how long I have been looking for a glimpse into either Lauren’s, Heidi’s, Audrina’s, Lowe’s, Stephanie’s, or Kristen’s homes!


I have never been able to find any photos of the “real” homes of the Hills cast.  And with all of the talk about the show being scripted and fake, it makes you wonder if the homes are in fact staged and just part of the Hills’ set design!  But apparently these actors (excuse me, I mean these girls) really do live there.



What do you think of Audrin’a digs that her mom decorated? I personally love the rich plum paint color in her bedroom paired with her crisp white bedding and curtains…however, I think other parts of her house could have used a real decorator’s touch.  What do you think?

If anyone out there knows what brand of paint/color is used in Audrina’s bedroom, please leave a comment with the info!

Color Predictions- F&B

Posted By Emily-Dallas | Oct 17, 2009 | 3 Comments | Category: Color, Paint, Trends

Farrow, Farrow, Farrow and Ball– which are the trendy colors for fall?

Glitz and Glamour-









Urban Decay-



For all of you designers out there who frequently use Robert Allen as a fabric resource, this post is for you! I recently discovered some new info about a collaboration between RA and Sherwin Williams!

How did I come to know about this? Well, it all began the other day when I was at their showroom selecting green fabrics for a client.  I said to Judy (who works there)…”I wish I had brought my paint samples with me- then I would know exactly what green to look for!”


{since I had such a specific green that I needed to match…almost an army green….it would have been very helpful to have had the paint swatch to match to their fabrics}

I know what you are thinking- a designer not bringing paint samples to match the fabric? Well I was technically matching the fabric to a patterned Cole and Son wallpaper but wanted the green paint swatch from the adjoining den for reference since it was a larger swatch…anyway Judy looked at me and said “you know we have collaborated with Sherwin and now have a library of paint colors here!”

So there you have it- a perfect example of how this new addition to their showroom could have really come in handy in this situation (too bad the swatch I was needing was a Ben Moore paint) however,  I use Sherwin just as much so their new resource will really be nice to have! (especially those days when I’ve run out the door without grabbing my paint samples!)



So, in a nutshell- the Robert Allen fabrics are meant to coordinate with Sherwin’s paints.

For instance, their Hydrangea collection is set to match a few different paint colors (one of which is SW6961 Blue Beyond)



Their Leaf Collection goes with SW6710 Melange Green



Their Terrain collection matches SW6076 Turkish Coffee



And their Tulip collection matches Cherries Jubilee- SW6862



I’m sure you get the picture by now!

On another note, Robert Allen has also partnered up with The Shade Store! More info on this exciting new partnership here.

ColorCapture Ben: New Application!

Posted By Emily-Dallas | May 21, 2009 | 3 Comments | Category: Color, Paint

iPhone applications are usually either one of two things: practical and productive…OR entertaining, but complete time- wasters.

Getting the weather reports (The Weather Channel), movie times (Showtimes), local restaurant guides (Urbanspoon)- all productive in my eyes.

Changing my hair with iStylist to look like Kristin Cavallari, molding my friends faces with Face Melter, stalking people on Loopt, and waving a pretend lighter in the air (Zippo Lighter)- not so much.


Today I found one that is fun, but also handy! It’s called ColorCapture Ben (named after my boyfriend or Benjamin Moore- either one)  What it does, is you zoom into a color in a photo you’ve taken or uploaded onto your phone, click the “match” key and then multiple Ben Moore color chips will come up that match the color you originally clicked on.  Cool huh? And if you are on a mission to get that paint color, the iPhone will even direct you to the closest Benjamin Moore store (using its GPS) so you can purchase the paint.  And my favorite part…it’s free starting June 1st.

Can’t wait to see how this thing works!

Pantone’s 2010 Predictions

Posted By Emily-Dallas | Mar 29, 2009 | 2 Comments | Category: Color, Paint, Trends

Pantone, the color experts, are at it again…and six months early! They recently came out with a Home + Interiors 2010 set of swatch cards of each of the 78 forecasted colors (including an additional neutrals palette). These cards encompass the anticipated trendy paint colors for next year.

Available for purchase!

Paint problems..solved!

Posted By Emily-Dallas | Mar 15, 2009 | 9 Comments | Category: Contests, Paint

This month’s challenge was a lot of fun for me. I got to select paint for one of our reader’s homes! The beautiful house belongs to Donna of Kansas City.

Her home was built in 1929 and the exterior is that of a brown/putty color- but she hopes someday to change it to yellow! She moved in about 4-1/2 years ago and initially painted every wall Benjamin Moore’s Linen White. She has since decided that she is ready for some color!

When you first walk into the home, the formal Living Room is to your right. It is painted a deep gold, Benjamin Moore’s Dijon 193 and contains red, off white and black accents. She wanted to keep this wall color in here and since it is visible from the entry, tv room, and dining room, she also wanted it to flow well with the new paint selections for the rest of the house. ‘

She had mentioned that the Entry was a possible candidate for paint; however, I think that she should just leave it Linen White since it looks straight into the Dining Room (and I chose to do a color-color for that room)

The Dining Room color was her biggest challenge by far! It’s currently painted Linen White but she wanted to add some color to the room to set it apart. Her furniture is traditional cherry with shield back chairs. The chair seats are upholstered in a graphic black and white stripe, her hardwoods are fairly light and the drapes are an oatmeal linen with black grosgrain ribbon trim.

The Dining Room is adjacent to the entry, sunroom, and kitchen/tv room (all Linen White). The things that I had to consider when choosing paint for this room were her six small cartoons that she purchased in China and wishes to get framed, another colorful piece of art that she got in China and is currently hung up in the room, a simple frameless mirror, white oyster plates with minimal gray/black detail, and clear crystal pieces. Her one request was that we don’t do red in the dining room since it has been done too much. I think I can handle that!

I ended up selecting Benjamin Moore’s Mill Springs Blue- HC-137 for this room. Since you can see the kitchen wall tile from here, I wanted something that would complement it and not fight its colors. I also wanted a color that wasn’t too shocking nor too playful. I wanted to keep with the sophisticated and elegant look that she has throughout her home.

I would paint this color from the top of the ceiling to the chair rail and then install crisp white wainscoting below so the room stays light and doesn’t get too cave-like.

The Mill Springs paint would bring out the shades of blue/green in her existing framed artwork as well as coordinate well with her Chinese cartoons (which have a lot of gray/green and gray/blue in them). This color would provide a nice dramatic backdrop for the room, break up all of that white, and make the larger piece of artwork really pop!

This brings me to the next room- the Sunroom. Visible through the dining area, this room’s walls are pure white paneled “worm wood”. The drapes are white sheeting and upholstered pieces are off-white, black, and off-white toile. Sunny yellow pillows on the chairs and window seat bring in some color. The flooring is a beige sisal carpet that someday will be a natural stone or brick.

She recently had glass doors made for the shelves, so she could display heirloom pieces and keep them safe out of her kitty’s reach! She loves the crystal hurricane lamps that belonged to her mother, but she was disappointed in how they disappear in the cabinet and wanted to know what accent color she could do to make her heirlooms stand out more!

For the back of the bookshelves, I chose Sherwin William’s Haven- SW 6437 as an accent color. Normally I would never tell a client to go to two different vendors to get their paint- it’s just a hassel. But out of ALL of the Benjamin Moore greens, I could not find one that matched her accessories well enough! And with paint, I always try to find the most perfect match- I become a little bit of a paint perfectionist and won’t stop until I find something that I am really happy with! All of the Benjamin Moore greens either had too much yellow, too much gray, or too much blue!

This one from Sherwin was perfect. It complements the colors in her accessories nicely and also provides a perfect background for sunny yellow. No other color but green could work here. She has a few yellow accessories in the bookshelves already (so painting yellow at the back of the bookshelves wouldn’t work!), light pink or purple (which would have coordinated with her floral teapots) would have clashed miserably with the yellow accessories and looked too “Easter basket”. Green really is the best solution here since there is a teeny bit of green in most all of her shelf accessories and it provides a nice, fresh, citrus look coupled with the yellow.

It’s always so much fun to do color consultations- virtual or in person! Thanks for sharing your home with us Donna- enjoy your new paint selections!

{For any color consultation inquiries, please email}

Be sure to enter next month’s challenge by 3/30- Julia is going to transform your bookshelves!!

I’ve been trying to sell this armoire on Craig’s List for as long as I can remember! People just aren’t in the market for armoires like they used to be now that flat screens are more prevalent….but I mean seriously how could someone NOT buy this armoire? Isn’t it gorgeous? Beautiful wood finish, an antique circa 1990, large and bulky- there’s just NOTHING like it out there- a true gem!!!

At least that’s what I tried to tell the shoppers on Craig’s List; however no one could be convinced- it truly is an eyesore.

So when I started thinking about turning my dining area into a design library, I figured I would need a big piece of furniture to hold catalogs, samples and all of the other stuff that designers need to keep handy (but also hide from the public). I didn’t want the first thing people saw when they came in to be my workspace- so that’s when the idea of the armoire started to look better and better (and not to mention, nice and free)

I began to think how great it would be if I revamped it…and once I have something set in my mind, there’s no stopping me. I had it moved from my sister’s house to my house within a day and started working on it the day after that. I wanted to make the armoire nice, but also low cost and a quick and easy project.

I ended up painting it off white (about four times) then added some crystal hardware from Anthropologie. But as the armoire became whiter, the neutral wall behind it made it disappear. So that’s when I decided to go BACK to the paint store and buy some mossy green paint to lend a background to my armoire. Don’t you just love how one project quickly turns into another?

The green wall color is much lighter and brighter in person- it was a really gross day today in Dallas so hence the horrible pictures! (don’t worry, it’s not 80’s forest green!)

Then I started to think of all the different things you could do with armoires and the possibilities are endless…Within them, you could store..

Arts and crafts/scrapbooking materials, office supplies, kids toys, sewing supplies/fabric, table linens, a wet bar, clothes/accessories, movies/tv, home accents, etc etc. Whatever your fancy! So before you haul off your bulky armoire to the resale shop, here are some pretty ideas below on what to do with that mangey old armoire…

Paint it in two colors or lacquer it….make it fun like Jamie Drake’s pink and black armoire!

{photo via Alkemie}

Add in some mirrored glass and paint it white for an updated crisp look

{Image via Domino}

Love this gray armoire (and the hardware) in this dining room by Hickory Chair.

I want this Windsor Smith armoire!!

Windsor Smith designed this room (one of my all time favorite rooms). A white mirrored armoire in the corner is the perfect touch to this space.

This feminine armoire featured in Country Living houses a whole bar inside! Who would have thought such a sweet looking armoire would contain so much liquor! Cute idea for those who like to entertain a lot.

This room, featured in House Beautiful contains a pretty robin’s egg blue armoire. If you are thinking your armoire is hopeless, just remember that a fresh coat of paint can go a long way on an old piece of furniture.

I saw this room over at La Dolce Vita blog, and love the angular lines on this armoire piece.

This painted and distressed French armoire from French Country Living, looks right at home in this space. Aside from standing there and looking pretty, it serves a purpose too! It holds linens.

{Image via Velvet and Linen}

It wouldn’t be right if I didn’t show you at least one armoire image from Cote de Texas!

House Beautiful showcased the beautiful Neirmann Weeks Quatrefoil Armoire.

These glass-paned geometric, white armoires really seem to be everywhere! We keep seeing them…another House Beautiful image…they must really like their armoires!

A Mary McDonald room…a black armoire displays classic and subtle accessories in the background.

Before clicking that “Post” button on Craig’s List, you might want to reconsider- armoires are really great to have handy and refinishing them can make a world of difference!

I’m sure you all know by now how much time I spend with my mom- and 99.9% of that time we spend together, we end up gabbing about design. Ever since I started Material Girls, she has gotten really into design blogs. She will often call me up and tell me about a new one she discovered. Her latest blog obsession is “the color lady”. She has been talking about the color lady for weeks. “Emily, this lady gives THE best paint advice! Haven’t you ever heard of her? Colour me Pretty? Wait, I think it’s Colour me Ecstatic? No, that’s not it…” Great description mom! I’ll be sure to google “colour me something”.

Ends up she was talking about Colour me Happy. I have since become just as obsessed with Maria’s blog as she is! Maria has been in the decorating business and specifying colors for over 10 years. She spreads her color knowledge throughout her blog and gives some really great advice…you have to read one of my favorite posts of hers here– she takes her readers on one of her color consultations and my other favorite (which rings SO true) is here

So I know I should go to sleep at some point tonight, but reading her whole blog from start to finish is too tempting. It’s so refreshing to find someone else who loves color and paint as much as I do- and someone who knows what she is talking about!

Be sure to check her blog out. We loves!

Color Crisis Averted!

Posted By Emily-Dallas | Feb 16, 2009 | 2 Comments | Category: Color, Contests, Paint

Don’t forget to enter our monthly giveaway!

This month I will be helping one of our readers with his or her paint probs. Gotta love free design advice!

Also stay tuned for the results of last month’s giveaway- Lauren’s Re-Design for the Ugliest Bathroom

Is your home feeling blah? Are your builder’s beige walls finally getting to you? Not to worry, you are not alone!

I can’t tell you how many consultations I’ve gone on where people want strictly color/paint advice. I experienced a similar situation a few weeks ago when I got a call from my boyfriend’s sister who told me that I need to come to Georgetown ASAP to fix her color problem (or lack thereof). Her walls “look lifeless”, she said. The same neutral color flows throughout her entire new house and she needed paint advice from a designer STAT. I designed her pediatric dentist office this summer (with bright colors galore) and then she comes home at the end of the day to a lackluster color scheme of neutral upon neutral upon neutral. Sigh.

A home should reflect one’s personality and when it doesn’t reflect anything, well it can end up looking pretty dismal.

I always tell people that one of the easiest, most affordable, and quickest way to give your home a makeover is through paint. What better way to express yourself and to highlight your art, furnishings, accessories?

For this months challenge, please send me up to three rooms that are in desperate need of a paint revamp! If you only have one or two rooms, no problem- send it my way! These can be bedrooms, kitchens, living rooms, powder rooms, dining rooms (you get the jist).

To enter the contest, please email me, Emily ( with the following (please submit by 2.28.09):

**At least four 4 images of all angles of the rooms you wish to repaint (can send up to three rooms) and send photos of existing flooring

**Images of any connecting rooms (to make sure the colors flow well with the rest of your house)

**General colors that you like, general colors that you dislike

**What you want the overall feel of the room to be? Dramatic, light and airy, warm and homey, etc.

**Please send photos of the existing furniture in the rooms as well as any existing fabric swatches (winner will be asked to mail- if possible, any fabric swatches to me that way we can make sure we get the closest match possible for your room!)

**Please state or show lighting conditions in the room

**I can choose paint from these vendors: Sherwin Williams, Benjamin Moore, and Farrow and Ball- please state in the email which vendor fits your budget and location.

**Please specify which areas of the room need to be painted- walls, moulding, ceiling, built-ins, etc.

After the first fifty entries or the last day of the month (whichever comes first), we will post a note on our blog that the giveaway submittal window has ended.

Here is a reminder of our contest calendar:

1st- Challenge announced

15th- Previous month’s challenge winner announced on our blog as well as a solution to the challenge.

Last day of the month– All entrants must be emailed to the designer who is taking on that month’s challenge.