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Thursday, December 19, 2013

To Paint or not to Paint Structural Beams?

What to do when you are under construction and can't decide what to do with color?  I recently got a letter asking what to do with exposed structural beams, paint or not?  

Dear MoD Design Guru,

Please excuse our mess as we are under construction. we've been trying to find the right paint color for our interior/exterior.  Because the beams continue to the outside and can be seen from the inside and the outside we figure we need to pick a color that goes with the interior and exterior.  We have already painted the ceiling white in both the dining and the kitchen - though we will be repainting everything so options are open.  I've included a picture here to show our new tile.  This is the gutted kitchen. Overall the new house finishes are shades of grey -kitchen cabs will be high gloss white. The tongue and grove is kind of a pickled or whitewash wood.  Many professionals have suggested we keep that and just paint the beams.  Do you have any ideas for us? Thank you for your time, Diane Klee

Dear Diane, 

You have a great space here..... large windows, open floor plan and I love how the exposed beams extend from the inside out. Great bones. For that reason, don't even think about painting those beams!  I'm frightened that your designer already started to paint the beams in that pic on the right. The space seems a bit blah now...The integrity of the structural beams need to sing!! You also ask about colors....the givens are a dark gray tiled floor and dark wood beams. There are a couple of things you can do. See some images for inspiration:

Pair the stained beams with a light gray wall and ceiling. You're high gloss white cabinets will pop... 


Pair the stained beams with a light white wall and painted white ceiling in between the beams.... clean and mod.


Go with a dark heavy ceiling. Match the wood inbetween the beams to the color of the beams. Its a nice contrast to the light walls. You have enough light  from the large windows to pull it off.... 

 Good luck and send me pics when the renovation is complete. Would love to see it!

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