Spotlight: Creative Stories from Around Ireland

Home Style: I Needed a Hero, A Colour Hero, and I Found Her

Edwina O'Connor met with a Dulux Colour Hero, and this was her experience

Maybe we were influenced by the years, and years, we had spent renting magnolia colour walled apartments. Perhaps the Art Galleries I loved to frequent on our days off had an impact on our decision, or it could be that we just wanted to be rid of the brown and beige that greeted us in room after room of our new home. Whatever the reason, the first thing Patrick and I decided upon, well apart from unpacking and scrubbing the place clean - because if it's your own mess it's okay - was to paint each room white. But now two and a half years and two little boys later, we are ready, ready to make the leap and add colour to our walls, skirting’s, doors, window sills, and possibly the ceilings, in most of our rooms - because I still love the freshness of white.

Our Colour Predicament

After weeks of our loo being in the shed, dust coating every surface in our hallway and creeping under doorways, our first major home renovation is just about complete. We have converted what was once a bedroom into a family bathroom and I'm happy to say that I'll be proud to share the big reveal of our self-designed debut into the online maze of interior design - so keep an eye out for that.

However this wasn't the only part of our renovation because what was once our family bathroom is now just a room. But it won't be just any room; it will soon be transformed into a bedroom for our two toddlers. And there lay our predicament; it's a shell in a sense, a freshly plastered shell. It doesn't have flooring, proper lighting, furniture or curtains to help us base our colour decision upon. Essentially we're starting from scratch, and this blank canvas that I feel is crying out for creativity had until very recently got me doubting my own convictions of what would and wouldn't work in this soon to be special space.

Not all Heroes Wear Capes

I consider myself creative. I had ideas, had scoured through the Internet, over did it on Pinterest, changed said ideas, watched every interior design programme available, and basically confused myself. And as Bonnie Taylor's husky voice repeated the words 'I need a hero' in my head - I made the wise decision to seek some professional advice to help me clarify my thoughts, or encourage new ones.

Amanda Daunt

Dulux Colour Hero

Amanda Daunt wasn't wearing a cape when I met her for a free consultation the other day. But she did show me her super 'colour expert' powers when it came to the advice she gave me. But you know, it'd be hard to expect anything less from a creative career woman such as Amanda - she has over 20 years' experience in retail and has excelled in roles on each level of the industry from fashion and knitwear design to sales and marketing, visual display and merchandising to product manufacturing, both on these fair isles and internationally. So essentially I knew my Colour Hero was going to save the day.

Guide

Getting a chance to talk with a professional Colour Consultant for a free consultation, where you can ask colour and product advice on everything from your front door to your garden shed may appear to be too good to be true - sure there would have to be a catch, nothing's for free in this world and all that pessimistic brain nudging. But it is true, and I experienced it.

Smith colouring in

So here's what happened - Patrick, the boys and I met Amanda during her monthly store visit. We waiting in line for a few minutes - Smith .coloured, Cassidy looked on, and Patrick and I spent our time checking out the Dulux Moda Palettes - Amanda explained them in more detail later. When my name was called, I was ready (Patrick took the boys for a walk to give us time to get down to some serious colour talk).

The consultation

I had photos of our room on my phone, taken from different angles - you can bring a video you've taken on your phone either. I had an idea of the orientation of the room and knew when it gets the most sunlight. The room is a blank space so I didn't need to bring along flooring samples or fabric swatches and furniture-wise, well, the only things we have are the boy’s beds. A few minutes into the consultation I mentioned to Amanda that we have a wallpaper mural of a world map that I had managed to un-hang from Smith's old bedroom, and that we would like to re-hang it, I also mentioned that I want to make miniature hot air balloons to hang from the ceiling - and heh presto, that was all Amanda needed and before I knew it I was looking at the palette for our little boys bedroom.

Moda Mineral Glow Palette

The colours which were taken from the Moda Mineral Glow Palette - Gatsby Blue, French Mist and True Fiction were perfect choices - and funnily enough brought me back to my very first creative idea that I had had for the room, a simple nautical look - before I had over-thought it and confused myself. My Colour Hero consultation had saved the day and I'm really looking forward to putting the chosen palette into action. I've got my colour swatch card, notes on where the colours will go, what finishes the paint should have - we're going with a satinwood finish for the skirting’s and door. And Amanda even suggested the type of flooring and bed linen that will make the room complete. Class.

From my consultation it was evident Amanda loves what she does - I also observed her with the other dames in colour distress before our meeting. But I asked her anyway, because I'm curious like that, about the highlights of her job and Amanda advised that "there is nothing more satisfying than hearing from a happy consumer after completing a colour scheme that I specified, we are the solution architects and problem solvers on all things colour". She also mentioned that repeat consultations and "new clients seeking our service out is testimony to a job well done". And I couldn't agree more - because I'm already eyeing up the calendar to see when she'll be back in my local store for my next consultation - and I don't even have the paint on the boys bedroom wall yet!

And so there you have it. Making a colour decision doesn't have to be difficult at all really - and with free professional colour consultations, free Moda palettes to help you choose your theme - have you seen them by the way? Coastal Calm, Subtle Glamour, True Romance, our boy’s bedroom capsule collection of Mineral Glow and the ones I have my eye on for our living room - Him & Her, and our hallway - Subtle Glamour. Although I might mix and match them, because anything is possible and they're all simply stunning.

Disclaimer: The post is sponsored by Dulux, but Edwina's views are her own.

Words by: Edwina O'Connor, TheLifeofStuff.com


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