Living

Ask a decor expert

I want to paint three walls in my bedroom light tan or taupe and then paint the fourth a slightly darker shade. Which wall should be darker?

Painting a feature wall a darker colour is a great way to add focus to a room, especially in a home that doesn’t have much architectural detail, such as crown moulding or decorative trim. I’d definitely paint the wall behind the bed, as a darker colour will attract the eye and create a lovely sense of drama.

I have a white lampshade that’s a bit too boring for my modern living room. The space is decorated in shades of purple with touches of black, so it just doesn’t fit. Any suggestions?

The easiest way to jazz up a lampshade is with ribbon – black would work well in your space. Horizontal stripes are easiest and would fit your modern look. Pin the end of the ribbon in place at the shade’s seam, then, while keeping the ribbon level, carefully run a bead of glue and press the ribbon in place section by section. Once you reach the seam, carefully fold over the end of the ribbon and glue in place, to hide any raw edges. I’d suggest practising on an old shade first.

We are finishing our basement and want to plan the decor. We have light birch floors, a cinnamon-coloured couch and an antique-stained pine bookcase. I need help selecting finishes for doors, wall colour and furniture.

Basements need an open and airy feeling to be successful. One way to obtain this is with colour. For the walls, try something a couple of shades lighter than your couch. White trim against another wall colour is too jarring; I would suggest a cream tone such as Behr’s Vermont Cream for the trim, doors and windows. If your windows are recessed, use the trim colour to paint all the surfaces around the window, which will bounce more light into the room. Avoid using white on the ceiling, as it will create too much contrast, especially if the ceiling is lower. Instead, add a splash of your wall colour to white ceiling paint and create a custom tint that will cast a warm glow. For furniture, take your bookcase as a cue and mix and match pieces in the same wood tone.

I’ve been trying to paint stripes on my child’s bedroom walls to no avail. Once I peel the tape off, the edges always look ragged. What can I do to get a professional look?

You’re in luck: 3M Canada has just released a new product specifically designed for your project. The low-tack Scotch Blue Painter’s Tape promises to make your life easier by peeling off the wall up to 60 days after you paint. My best tip for getting a clean edge is to not go too heavy with the paint and to run a blade along the edge of the tape just before you peel it off. Good luck!

I’ve been trying to paint stripes on my child’s bedroom walls to no avail. Once I peel the tape off, the edges always look ragged. What can I do to get a professional look?

You’re in luck: 3M Canada has just released a new product specifically designed for your project. The low-tack Scotch Blue Painter’s Tape promises to make your life easier by peeling off the wall up to 60 days after you paint. My best tip for getting a clean edge is to not go too heavy with the paint and to run a blade along the edge of the tape just before you peel it off. Good luck!

I’ve been trying to paint stripes on my child’s bedroom walls to no avail. Once I peel the tape off, the edges always look ragged. What can I do to get a professional look?

You’re in luck: 3M Canada has just released a new product specifically designed for your project. The low-tack Scotch Blue Painter’s Tape promises to make your life easier by peeling off the wall up to 60 days after you paint. My best tip for getting a clean edge is to not go too heavy with the paint and to run a blade along the edge of the tape just before you peel it off. Good luck!

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