Paint colors. Choosing our children’s names wasn’t this hard.

We were so naive. How many shades of blue can there possibly be, we thought. Off to the hardware store we skipped, hand in hand, so eager to transform our dated, chaotic bedroom into a serene, peaceful sanctuary–a matrimonial haven. We set out with nothing more than a couple of rollers, some masking tape and a dream. (Sigh) We were just a couple of rosy-cheeked kids then.

You know how the lion’s share of a casino’s earnings come from the slot machines? A quarter here, a quarter there…Well, I’m convinced a hardware store’s biggest money maker is the $2.99 pint sized paint sample. I’m embarrassed to tell you how many we purchased trying to find just the right shade of blue. It’d be one thing if each sample we bought was a different color and we were painting the whole house. But each pint we ponied up for belonged to the soft-blue-with-muted-gray-undertones family. How many shades of soft-blue-with-muted-gray-undertones can there possibly be? A zillion. We tried about 20.

The problem is, each shade looks different on varying walls at varying hours of the day. We’d go from loving a swatch, to loving the actual paint in the pint, to admiring it’s perfect glossy color on the 79 cent sponge brush, to absolutely abhorring it once it made contact with it’s orange peeled final destination.

 

“Ugh! It looks downright purple in this light!”

“It’s those new white lightbulbs you bought. It’ll look better in a lower wattage.”

“No, it’s the glare of the sunset.”

“Here. Try this color.”

“Yikes, how’d something called Morning Mist get so turquoisey? If we slather this on all four walls it’s going to look like Better Homes and Gardens–Cuba edition.”

“Try Ghost Ship”

“Too spooky.”

“Iceberg?”

“Disaster.”

“Smoke?”

“Too dark.”

“Healing Sky?”

“Too….too…too blue.”

“What? That’s not a thing. They’re all blue.”

“Grrr….Fine. You pick. Just pick one! I don’t care anymore! I’m not going back to the paint store! It’s starting to get embarrassing! We are so indecisive! One of these has got to work! Whatever you choose, I’ll be happy with.”

“Ok, I will. This one.”

“Not that one.”

 

A marriage can only have this conversation so many times before it realizes the cruel irony of sophomoric arguing in order to create a matrimonial haven.

You know what finally saved the day? Pinterest. I don’t even have a Pinterest account. (I believe I’m the only 30something blogger who doesn’t, but it’s true.) I finally Googled “blue bedroom paint color pinterest” and got pointed in the right direction.

When we slicked on that final sample color, we could both hear the Hallelujah chorus. We could be a happy couple again! Finally, a color we both liked. A color we both loved! Not too dark, not too light, and not even a hint of purple. Cool yet cheerful, light yet bold. It looked even better at sunset.

All four walls are painted now (an adventure in and of itself), the furniture is back in place, and yes, our boudoir is transformed. It’s the serene sanctuary we were hoping for.

I know you’re dying to know, so I’ll tell you. The winning paint color that finally put an end to the weeks of anguish and bickering was Benjamin Moore, Quiet Moments. And no, the irony of the paint name is not lost.

For more painting laughs, I love this scene from “Mr. Blandings Builds His Dream House” starring Cary Grant and Myrna Loy, 1948. It’s too fun.

Read more by Margaret Anderson at www.jamsandpickles.wordpress.com