Make Plain Moldings Pop With Paint
A dose of strong color brings out the beauty in simple moldings
Shown: Farrow & Ball's Charlotte's Locks
White trim and colored walls may be traditional, but here's a case for flip-flopping the formula. To finish this loft-like living space in an 1861 Brooklyn rowhouse, designer Rafe Churchill trimmed the walls and windows with orange, framing the room as well as the view, and bathed the built-in bookcases with the same hue, bringing out the warm patina of the original heart-pine floor. He chose other forthright colors for the millwork throughout the house, unifying the spaces with walls the ashy white of raw plaster. In this one, the moldings are "simple but also somewhat elegant, and we wanted them to pop," Churchill says. When it comes to trim, he invariably opts for an eggshell finish. "Semigloss can be a distraction," he says, "while eggshell, being a bit more subtle, helps you focus on the details of the woodwork."