Finding the Perfect Green

By Kate Riley December 20, 2018

*this post brought to you in partnership with Lowe’s.

I’m spending some time in the next few weeks getting my new office space ready to start 2019 with a bang. I’m really excited about how the space is coming along. All of my office furniture including the desk, shelving, and project tables are white so I knew I definitely wanted to paint the walls. I’ll be adding touches of black and brass with my decorative accents, but for the walls, I was looking for the perfect shade of green:  something verdant but not too vibrant, something not too dark or light, and something that hinted of the sea.

I went in search of the perfect green, and I found just the right shade by Valspar paint that makes me so happy.



We all know, whenever you’re on the hunt for the perfect paint color, the place to start is always with a stop for a group of paint swatches. I went to my neighborhood Lowe’s to see what kinds of greens were available in the Valspar line, and of course there were dozens and dozens of colors to look at.

Tip! Always ask for the fan decks they keep behind the paint counter, don’t just rely on the samples on display.



Samples in the stores are never what they look like on the walls so grab as many sample pots as you think you need, I’d recommend a minimum of five or six for comparison. I’ve always believed it’s better to pay for a few extra samples and make sure you get the color you want then to pick a color and buy a gallon (or two) that you end up disliking.

I was influenced by Valspar’s Colors for 2019, specifically the color Green Water. I tried it as one of my samples on the wall but it was a little too minty for my space.



I put up a grid of greens on my office wall and watched the paint samples throughout the day and how they looked at different times of day under different kinds of light. I used a lot of samples for this process because I wanted to get it just right and greens can be tricky! Sometimes they are too saturated or minty or blue so I wanted to compare a lot of them.




I made a map of the samples and referred to it over the course of several days before deciding on the color I loved the most.



The color I ended up choosing was Field of Pines, a beautiful sea green with a bit of gray and just a hint of blue. Valspar has a variety of paints available for your needs, for both interior and exterior, find any shade you’re thinking of by using their Color Visualizer.

I wanted a low or zero VOC formula so I opted for their Simplicity line.


The coverage with this product is very good. I’ve used other costlier paint + primer products that don’t cover as well and usually require two coats. For this 12 x 10’ space I used only half a gallon and it covered the walls in one coat. One gallon can cover up to 400 square feet.

I also love the Zero VOC formula, it had a tiny odor to it while it was wet and while I was working with it because it’s paint, but the next day there was no odor at all when I entered the room. I felt like I could get right to work assembling my office and didn’t have to wait to air the room out like you do with other paint formulas.

In my color experiment I narrowed down some really nice leaf and olive greens by Valspar:

Leafy Greens

Leafy Rise 5007-4A, Jungle Chameleon 5008-4A, Gentle Pasture 6003-4A



Olive Greens

Native Henna 6001-4B, Blanched Thyme 6001-4A, Deep Ellum (my favorite) AR1124



Here’s a sneak peak at how the office is coming together! All of my office furniture is white, as is the ceiling, trim, and doors, so I’m loving this beautiful shade of green on the walls, I find it calming and inspiring at the same time.

Stay tuned for the big reveal coming in January! And be sure to pay a visit to Lowe’s to peruse all of the Valspar paint colors available, and don’t forget to ask about those fan decks they keep behind the counter!

*This post brought to you in partnership with Lowe’s, your source for all your home improvement needs. All opinions shared as part of a product review are my own.

Built-In Benches in an Entry

By Kate Riley December 18, 2018

I have a client in San Francisco who is knee deep in a full scale top to bottom home remodel. Presently we’re in the framing stage so I’ve been keeping on top of the progress during the lighting/electrical placement, the plumbing, and the framing of the windows and doors. I’ll be sharing progress reports from time to time as this project moves along, and will have several new spaces to share in the spring.

During a recent inspection, there was a problem with part of the old foundation that couldn’t be removed. Some awkward chunks of cement were jutting into the entry. I saw this as an opportunity and had the contractor frame a 18” high bench in what will be a mudroom when finished. I’ll trim it nicely with molding (similar to the Jenn Feldman example below) once the drywall goes up.

Today’s post is a break from the holidays and a glance at some well designed entry and mudroom benches. Not only do they look great, but built in benches are also practical, it’s that one spot you can set your handbag and groceries while you take off your shoes. The built in bench is one of my favorite elements to add to any space but it’s especially useful in an entry or mudroom, amiright?


tiffany weiss design






bria hammel interiors


chango & co


jenn feldman



lauren leonard interiors



jennifer radakovich



cruz custom homes



chango & co


bria hammel interiors


Don’t want to hire a contractor? No worries, here are some DIY ideas for building your own entry or mudroom bench:


designing vibes


ikea hemnes hack by house of hoff


little red brick house



just a girl and her blog