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Design Dilemma
Design Dilemma

Need help with choices for our new home.

nmat5November 9, 2012
Hi All,

We signed a contract for new home. It will take about 4-5 months to be built, but we are so excited. Being first time home buyers, it is a dream which has finally started coming together.
But it was really overwhelming to go to the design center and having to make all those choices. With no experience of doing this and no idea of how things would look together – it was very difficult.

We need help !

A little intro about the home itself. – It is a beautiful open floor plan and it is big – about 3800 sft. The main areas are nice and open – I can give a link to the floor plan if it helps.

A little intro about our likes and dislikes – we are in our early 30s – we like mostly modern – not exactly contemporary but we like the home to be clean and crisp. Bright and airy (good we have lot of windows).

The choices we made till now are:

1.Danner Shaw 223 caramel flooring (http://www.shawhf.com/colors.aspx?id=10222&s=93996 – it is 223 caramel)
2.Aristokraft Saybrook Birch Rouge for kitchen cabinets (http://www.aristokraft.com/styles/product_detail/?id=280)
3.Santa cecillia countertop granite -
Case Design/Remodeling, Inc. · More Info

4.Aristokraft Landen Maple Sarsaparilla for bathroom cabinets (http://www.aristokraft.com/styles/product_detail/?id=292)
5.Interior pain color Ice berg SW 6798 (Sherwin Williams - http://www.sherwin-williams.com/homeowners/color/find-and-explore-colors/paint-colors-by-family/SW6798-iceberg/)
6.Capecod brick exterior – with Linen exterior trim – Linen painted shakes – Ledgestone aspen stone – rustic black roof shingles
7.Flooring in sunroom is Shaw casa grande azucar (http://www.shawhf.com/colors.aspx?id=11248&s=106416)
8.Flooring in master bedroom is shaw roma chai (700) (http://www.homefoundationsflooring.com/colors.aspx?id=46757&s=351256)

We are not very sure about how it is going to be overall – if these are good or bad – straight right ugly.

We plan to paint some rooms after closing – ex: kitchen – some kind of yellow, guest bedroom – some kind of light lavender, master bed – some other color (not decided)

Now question time:
First – thank you for reading through patiently.

1.Interior – the floor with the kitchen cabinets – will that combination of cherryish against caramel flooring look good
2.Interior – the bath cabinets are different color than the kitchen – is it common to do this ?
3.Interior – paint color Ice berg – is it good for majority of the home (considering we are going to paint sosome rooms other colors)
4.Exterior – linen siding +trim against capecod brick – will it look fine – we drove around a lot but really could not see this combination much.
5.Suggestions for some good yellows (not to bright, still kinda neutral) and some good light light lavender for spare bedroom

Thank you so much for reading. And any kind of suggestions will be helpful.
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Custom Home Planning Center
You've make pretty complete decisions. We could suggest improvements in lighting and things you may not have considered: See this discussion - Building a custom home.... Any "must" haves/cool ideas
add this on to the discussion line above and read and read and read, it will be worth it.
    Bookmark   November 9, 2012 at 6:36PM
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
I would not select a pale blue as my overall interior color. I would instead select a neutral color such as a gray, taupe or light tan color. If you're undecided, look at SW 6106 Kilim Beige. I didn't have time to check out your tile or wood flooring choices so don't know how they go with that color.

Usually the builder design centers have interior designers working for them I would ask the person who assisted you there if she/he would have preferred for you to have made different selections. Listen carefully to the answer. If you just ask if your selections are fine, you'll probably get a "yes". But if you ask more pointed questions, you may get a different answer.

I'll check out some of your selections when I have time tomorrow, but for now...yawn...it's off to bed.
Good night!
3 Likes    Bookmark   November 9, 2012 at 7:54PM
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Bath cabinets, media units, cabinetry in other areas of the house are often different from kitchen cabinets. Yes, this is good. It's best when things are related, but not the same. Who likes "leftovers"?

I don't like the wall choice with the cabinet color. Both nice, independently, but they don't feel cohesive.

What are your cabinetry options through homebuilder? Aristokraft only? If that's the only possible brand, spend extra on the construction options. I looked through their website, and 3/8" particle board is weak. I run a custom shop, and I don't even like using even 3/4" particle board. Go the plywood route. The upsale on the hardware is absolutely worth it as well.
1 Like    Bookmark   November 9, 2012 at 8:09PM
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If you will spend some time doing research, you will find the rooms that you love, either on houzz or in magazines. Go to a bookstore and go through the interior decorating section. Buy the book, magazine. Show the decorator.

Building a house is about more than floor finishes, wall color and countertops. WHere do you need plug-ins? Where are you putting the TV? Telephones? Lighting? A decorator working with the builder will eliminate a lot of regrets later on. Builders are not decorators. (When I had the A/C installed, I was out of town. Big mistake! The ceiling vents are in the middle of each room's ceiling! What an eyesore!)

That being said, painting any room a definite color (lavender, icy blue, for instance), even though you absolutely LOVE that color, will seriously limit your decorating choices, and 5 yrs. down, you'll be repainting. Neutrals in either the tan or gray (depending on your taste) families will last longer, be easier to accessorize, and save the colors for things that don't require a major effort or big $$: rugs, lamps, art, draperies, linens, the occasional chair. There are shadings of the colors (grays that hint at blue or lavender, tans or taupes that aren't quite yellow) that might work better.

Never decide on a paint color without painting a test patch in the room. Use flooring samples and other materials to compare. No color will look the same in the store, daylight or lamplight. I went through 6 colors before I found the color for my living room, and even then, I mixed the color myself. (Come to think of it, all the colors inside and out are custom blends.)

As long as you love it, you can do whatever you wish. If you plan on resale (hardly anyone lives in the same house for 20 yrs), there are considerations.
2 Likes    Bookmark   November 9, 2012 at 8:47PM
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Thanks all for the comments.
Following are the reasons we went with Iceberg -
Also if you want to see some existing records - i will need to set u up as PT (physical therapist).
1. We were bored of the regular beige and tans (having lived in apartments for so long)
2. We were going to paint the kitchen and some of the bed rooms in different colors
3. Iceberg to us looked like a very light pleasant blue
4. I got some sample paint from SW and got a piece of drywall - painted and liked the color
5. I grew up in a house with almost the same (blueish) colored walls and this kinda reminds me of this
6. we intend to stay in this house for atleast 5-7 years if not more - and any ways when we are ready to sell it - we would have to repaint house. (most likely)

Regarding the cabinets -
I will surely talk to the builder and check - But as far as I remember - we took an upgrade which mentioned solid wood - with dovetail - with soft close - with full extn.

I need some recommendations for some neutral light yellow (not really an yellow) for kitchen.
Thank you again for your comments.
    Bookmark   November 10, 2012 at 5:56AM
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If you have not already, get a mood board together. Collect bits of finishes you will use and see if they play nice together. The bigger the surface areas, the better. If you have difficulty chosing which paint colours go together, get an interior decorator's colour atlas for the brand of paint you intend to use. I am in Australia and have a Dulux colour atlas. It has about 4500 colours in it and it makes it a lot easier than just having the 1000 colours to chose from at the wall of the hardware store. Get whoever is doing your floor to give you at least 1'x1' of what the floor will look like, same for bench tops, tiles and fabrics. Of course, paint some mdf at least 2'x2' with your colours and the colour of your mouldings on strips of wood 4" wide.

As someone said, lighting is VERY important.

Bath and kitchen cabinets different sounds fine to me. Actually, since you guys seem to have your toilets in your bathroom (what are you thinking?), I recon that it would be better if one area did not remind you of the other.

Good to see you are getting a big house. Mitt Romney reckons that 47% of American's have houses that are too small. At least I think that's what he said.
1 Like    Bookmark   November 10, 2012 at 7:30AM
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
I would encourage you to switch to hardwood flooring in the master bedroom. Tiles go in and out of fashion much more than hardwood flooring does. For your sunroom, I'd switch to the Dorado color of the same tile. The one you selected will work well with your blue walls, but Dorado will allow you to have your blue walls and later change easily to another color.
4 Likes    Bookmark   November 10, 2012 at 8:04AM
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I would love to see more pics of your kitchen and hear more about colors, back splash lighting. Our houses are very different (ours is a tiny city house), but we have similar colored counters and cabinets.
    Bookmark   November 10, 2012 at 8:08AM
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vicky feldman
well... many a things had been discussed but i want to add one in here. it was something i dint do when i moved in my new house. So dont want you to go through it. Check for all possibilities of water damage. What i went thru was due to the old rusted over tank which burst and flooded the home.
So you keep these few things in mind. Call a pro and get thehome checked for water damage like the tanks, the pipes, sewer backup and basement humidity.
Get the reports of the home inspectors first before you move in.
    Bookmark   November 10, 2012 at 8:45AM
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I would suggest keeping your wall colours neutral, that way it's much easier, and probably cheaper, to change up your look with changing accessories. In our last home I ( and by I, I mean my husband) painted the master bedroom a vibrant sunny yellow ( I hate getting up in the morning. The colour was supposed to help . Not.). After I got tired of my original bed coverings (beautiful blue with patterned stripes of yellows and oranges that I brought back from Bolivia) I was sort of stuck when it came to colours to match. After a few bad choices that I tried to pretend worked, I ended up with black and white. I'm liking the neutral colours of my new house, because I can change it up easily when I get bored, or the season changes.
1 Like    Bookmark   November 10, 2012 at 9:02AM
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By Design EK
I would recommend you look for an independant interior designer in your area that would charge you a reasonable rate t o look over all of your samples and help you pull them together. This is a service I offer and think any professional should do for you. They can also then look at your lighting and suggest fixtures and other details. There is a lot that goes into designing a new build and this will be invaluable by making sure all of the details are covered. A good Designer should help you save money by respecting the budget and working within that budget to get you what you need. They could also help you plan for furnishings and color to give you an entire plan, that will also appeal to the resale aspect you mentioned.
That being said it is hard to pick they right paint colors over the computer so i will give you my tricks. Make sure you place the colors you are selecting together, in as much of the lighting they will go in as possible, and also with the tile/wood/etcetera you are choosing. You should be able to notice by comparing a broad range of yellows, for example, with the blue you like which one complements it and which one looks to green or dull. My compliments in going with color instead of neutral. Also look to the color families that many paint companies are putting together now to help coordinate colors. i don't mind admitting as a designer that I use these! For example i just found some great color brochures the HGTV put together form Sherwin Williams paint. Even if you don't use their paint many companies will match their colors. Check them out and have fun with color on your walls! It is easier and less expensive to change than than a plaid sofa!

2 Likes    Bookmark   November 10, 2012 at 9:07AM
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
Yes, I think most of us are in agreement that nmat5 is making a mistake by painting every room in the house a pale blue. Unfortunately, she's determined.
2 Likes    Bookmark   November 10, 2012 at 9:08AM
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U-Save Protective Products Vancouver BC Canada
I would strongly recommend to take care of your investment by requesting to the contractors, suppliers or installers to PROTECT THE SURFACES i.e. carpet, floor, countertop, tub, etc.... TO ELIMINATE DAMAGES making it GOOD AS NEW and saves you money in clean-up costs. Here is our website fyi.... www.coverandsave.com
    Bookmark   November 10, 2012 at 9:25AM
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Hi, I understand your need for light blue walls. But the manufacturer has chosen to give this paint color as its name: ICEBERG? Maybe one of the pros will weigh in on my comment. I have often heard to not pay attention to or to even know the name given for a paint color. However I'd like to know and it might be helpful in your case, does the manufacturer provide "clues" as to the nature/effect of the paint. In this regard I question specifically the "coldness" that might be imparted by the blue you have chosen. I'd always wanted a pro's opinion on this and don't think I've ever run across it in my many years of reading on paint and design. Good luck in your new home and try not to rush into decisions that you'll be sad about later.

I guess my only other advice would be to not be penny wise and pound foolish. (God, I sound like my mother!). You've chosen what many might think is a rather large home (3800 s.f.) Now please do not skimp on the really important things (i.e., as noted by the person who cautioned about the cabinets). You don't want to end up with a large home with inferior or mediocre surfaces, fixtures and appliances. ( You've probably already realized the difference between the cost of upgrading say 1500 sq. ft. of flooring versus 750 sq ft.). In the kitchen and baths for instance granite counters will last many lifetimes. But inferior and/or cheaply made cabinets will hardly make it to your 5-7 year timeline. (I know this because this from experience. My husband and I bought a home with a kitchen range that couldn't even boil water because the owner, a part-time gourmet chef, planned to redo the kitchen later on, sometime down the road. Unfortunately within a year his wife was promoted and they were relocated to Puerto Rico by the Navy and had no choice but to sell their home one year after moving in. At least they were fairly honest (not totally) about where they skimped. Other things we had to learn the hard way. madeline
1 Like    Bookmark   November 10, 2012 at 9:37AM
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I have helped hundreds of people choose paint colors and I must concur about the blue color. I would suggest the following: BEFORE painting the entire house this blue color, take this color and invest in a gallon of it. paint MANY poster boards and once the sheetrock goes up, take the posterboard and put them all over the house--high, low; corners, by windows in darker areas of the rooms that get little light. Visit the rooms at different times of day... on sunny and cloudy days. Blue can be especially tough to live with during winter months. Most homes are naturally dark and shadowy and committing to painting the entire house blue is a decision that you should consider after seeing how it will work under many lighting conditions.
1 Like    Bookmark   November 10, 2012 at 7:29PM
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Susan Lynch
We recently did a major kitchen renovation and used a shade of yellow called Jersey Cream from Sherwin Williams for the walls. It's a very light, pale, soft yellow. Other finishes included natural cherry cabinets (custom made) and 5" hickory hardwood flooring. For someone like me who is afraid of any colors other than neutral, it was a big step, and I couldn't be happier with the overall look. Good luck!
1 Like    Bookmark   November 11, 2012 at 1:56AM
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If you're having the house built custom, I would HIGHLY recommend reading this article/blog before having anything else done. It has great suggestions on things people have added or wished to add to their homes, and mistakes they would warn others against. Enlightening read: http://ths.gardenweb.com/forums/load/build/msg0418014712443.html?26
    Bookmark   November 11, 2012 at 12:03PM
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Color trends for 2014+ front Pantone do include blues, monoco blue, another strong color will be grayed jade along with linen. Check out their color forecast to see if there is any thing you like and if your idea of blue will work. http://www.redoitdesign.com/2012/09/05/sneak-peek-pantone-colors-2014/
another tip for you as others have mentioned, don't paint until your floors are in an and the light fixtures in place with the bulbs as that can wreck havoc on your paint color.Pick color for the things that can be easily changed, Also use quality on the things you touch, the rest will come together for you. Congrats on your new house. Different shades and tints of linen with blues will be stunning ! I hope you continue to post pictures of your progress and of course the finished home.
    Bookmark   November 11, 2012 at 2:32PM
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID
She's having a new house built. The builder will paint long before light fixtures are in.
    Bookmark   November 11, 2012 at 2:43PM
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Sherwin Williams Blonde is a great yellowish warm color without being sun yellow
    Bookmark   November 11, 2012 at 2:48PM
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Thanks a lot for the feedback/comments.

To Carolyn's point :) - yes blue/iceberg is big risk and limits a lot of decorating options. But again blue will only remain in - foyer + living + dining + family + bonus + hallways ( i know it is a pretty big portion of the house).
Kitchen + sunroom + breakfast nook - will be in some yellow or blonde
bedrooms - we are yet to decide.

But as you guys said, I surely will watch this color (i just painted 3 4X4 sheetrocks and put them in my current house) - I will look at it everyday - different times and lights etc... Eventually when the house is up ... i will move these there and take a look. That may give me a good idea. But last 2 days - i am seeing it and i like it even more :)

I think we did a great job at the design center (thanks to houzz forums) - we did do a lot of upgrades (gourmet kitchen, upgraded master bath with semi seemless frame, tile walls etc.. , added a lot of windows, cabinets, hardwood, carpet - this is where most of our big numbers went). we didnt do somethings we felt were unnecessary - like rocker switches, under cabinet lights etc.

As construction starts and moves on ... i surely will post pictures and keep this post updated.

Thanks again to all of you. Please keep the comments flowing ... there is a lot to learn - from every comment , I learn something.
    Bookmark   November 11, 2012 at 3:11PM
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We have a color called iceberg by benjamin moore in our bedroom and i love it. so calm and really not cold at all. i love blues. our masterbath is called constellation by BM. my philosophy is that any color can be a neutral as long as you are careful. for a very easy on the eyes yellow, may i suggest benjamin moore's man on the moon. so lovely. it is one of their off whites but is a gorgeous soft yellow. our house is very open concept and we have that in our entry, living/dining, family room, kitchen, laundry and upper hall. very subtle and very neutral. another yellow that is nice, but sometimes can read brassy in my opinion (but not the opinion of the BM folks) is Weston flax. Love it, but, it is stronger than they say.
    Bookmark   November 11, 2012 at 7:40PM
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Retractable Screens, LLC
Adding some retractable screens for your doors can be a great way to open your space up without ruining the look of your exterior. They can even be matched to the color of your interior if the doors open out. It is a great solution that helps to reduce cooling costs and lets you enjoy the fresh outdoor air!
    Bookmark   November 11, 2012 at 9:10PM
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Sherwin Williams "Moon Slice" is a pretty, soft yellow...
    Bookmark   November 12, 2012 at 6:41AM
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I like the lazy river house, I like to buy the plans to build it...how many sqf is it.? any idea?
    Bookmark   October 14, 2014 at 7:03AM
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Carolyn Albert-Kincl, ASID

Here we are two and a quarter years later, wondering how the house turned out. I'm hoping you love the colors you chose and are living happily ever after in your new home. Please tell us how it's going.

    Bookmark   February 12, 2015 at 5:47PM
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