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How to choose wall colours and effects #3

To live in the colours you love is what drives each room-make-over and colour palette in Paint & Decor. Room make-overs can start with any inspiration you choose, as long as it comes from the heart! For this make-over we were feeling rather nostalgic about our childhood farm in the Kalahari. To create a space that reflects the calm, honest and warm atmosphere that this land of red dunes, open horisons and captivating light exudes was a wonderful journey.

Often the journey in finding the right colours to create the perfect atmosphere is in itself a deeply satisfying and nourishing process.

Kalahari Nostalgia :


Inspiration from the Kalahari

To capture the atmosphere of this place, the Kalahari, and appropriate it for a room design, we will start with picking the overall elements that we want to enhance:






We browsed through our colour collections and through our hearts for the colours that create the perfect atmosphere and decided to go with a very minimal, clean colour combo.

The colours we chose reflect the main elements we want to capture as listed above, they are:

HORSEBACK - from our Countryside Colour Collection

& RAW CEMENT - from our Earth Whites Colour Collection.

Horseback reflects the colour of the sand, the beautiful glossy coats of horses running in the open veld/grass. It is a very natural and warm brown leaning a little towards yellow more than red - this means the colour won't look pink and creates a lovely toffee or caramel colour on your walls.

Raw Cement is a very pale and fresh grey-white. The pale crisp colour of Raw Cement reflects the early morning feeling of getting up and heading out into the open, clear morning on a wintery day in the Kalahari, helping us create the atmosphere of SKY & FREEDOM.

As this is also a colour combo that has to create an atmosphere Raw Cement also has to work well with Horseback. We chose this shade of white also because it contrasts Horseback exceptionally well and emphasise the crisp nature of the colour. This particular white is rather cool and acts as a type of complementary colour to the warmth of Horseback. (Read more about complementary colours on our previous two blogs about colour choices here & here )

For the FURNITURE we chose colours that belong to the same family of colours to the wall colours: Annie Sloan Country Grey is a lovely grassy like neutral that has a brown-grey colour perfect for the chair! Annie Sloan Old White works superbly well with Raw Cement and also have a slight grey hue, this will work well for the little cabinet.

"My heart longs for the silence, of the

slow movement of clouds, over horisons of red

dunes and planes of dew"

J.S Goussard

How to choose the paint effects to reflect the theme?

To reflect our chosen elements to create a Nostalgic Kalahari theme ( THE SAND DUNES, THE GRASS, THE SKY, FREEDOM ) we need a paint effect that helps with the atmosphere:

Two colours on a wall already create a great dynamic, but how to marry them to the theme?

LAYOUT: Divide the wall in thirds, paint the bottom third one colour and the top two thirds the other colour.

COLOUR LOCATION: Usually the darker colour in a colour combo/two tone wall is painted at the bottom and the lighter colour at the top - we want to keep to this tradition because Horseback at the bottom and Raw Cement at the top creates the idea of veld and sky.

PAINT EFFECTS FOR THE WALLS: A very cloudy, whimsical paint effect for the white colours in the make-over to reflect sky, clouds and give depth to the wall. A bit of hand painted detail on the Horseback stripe mimicking veld grasses softens the divide between the colours and enhances the veld and sky theme. We also added a nostalgic verse in white chalk on the Horseback strip: My heart longs for the silence.

PAINT EFFECTS FOR THE FURNITURE: To re-create the same misty feel that we want to create with the Raw Cement on the walls, we will paint the little cabinet in very textured Old White, seal it with Clear Soft Wax and then add some Dark Wax to highlight the texture and give depth to the piece. For the chair we only want the smooth, solid colour of Country Grey.

Colours and paint theme

How we painted the wall and furniture will be set out in another step-by-step blog, keep your eyes peeled or follow us to stay up to date! facebook & Instagram

Live in the colours you love,

Visit our paint colours online or in the shop

and fall in love.


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