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I watch a lot of HGTV shows, and Designed to Sell is one of my favorites. If I can’t sit down and give my full attention to an episode, I love catching design nuggets while I’m doing other things. I had the show on Friday night while I was preparing to meet some friends for dinner when designer Monica Pedersen said something that stopped me in my tracks.
Lavender, Monica said, is the new beige. On this episode, Monica helps the Jacobs, a family of six, design their 1920s Colonial to sell so that they can move to Sweden. In the dining room, Monica is inspired by a blue-and-white, 18th century plate and convinces the couple to paint the space lavender to serve as a modern backdrop for the family heirloom. Kudos to the Jacobs for being willing to go outside the box. About the finished room, they said: “It works!” A potential buyer called the room traditional but also funky. What do you think?
Lovely in Lavender

Lovely in Lavender?

Whether or not you like the lavender, I think this dining room works. Just look at the before picture:
A Dining Room Not Designed to Sell

A Dining Room Not Designed to Sell

If you missed this episode – which also features a fabulous living room and sunroom makeover – mark your calendars for March 12 at 6 p.m. when you can see it again. Click here to find out more about the program schedule and the products used in this episode.

What do you think about the lavender? Would you use it as a neutral? Where would you use it besides in a little girl’s room? 

44 Responses

  1. Shirley says:

    The new Lavender is NOT the new Neutral!! I think that would be a mistake to leave that color. I would have to repaint back to beige. I still like the neutral colors as beige is relaxing and calm. That would be the color that I would stay with. The lavender may work in a bedroom, but that would be the only room. Monica should change that color…

  2. Cindy says:

    Designed to sell is my favorite show. I love Monica and lavender. I just redecorated my master to change it out. However I do not like it here, mixed with gray or not it still works best with white.

    But lets give Monica the benefit of the doubt, maybe it just didn't photograph well.

  3. Erika says:

    Not too keen on the lavender for this particular space. I personally like the original color but definately needs some
    hints of other colors around the room to make it glow, warm and inviting. Colors to make the table pop and a better match of furniture or choose colors to bring it all together.

  4. Jennifer says:

    I say beige but thats just me and I also was wondering if any one knew if there was a good size closet in the guest bedroom???

  5. Denise says:

    I liked the before better too! If I would have walked in this home with lavender walls I would have said "Thats the first wall to be painted"! Yuck!!! That is NOT neutral!

  6. kandi says:

    I like both the before and after. For this particular dining room, I think the before looks better. However, I think both are too stylized to meet "neutral" standards for selling a home.

    I would use lavender in my home – I'm thinking in a master bathroom with a complimentary tile floor, tile shower, a HUGE spa tub, double vanity and attached walk-in closet. Welcome to my dream home. *sigh* Back to reality.

  7. JP says:

    Home and Garden section of the Washington Post has featured articles and discussions about lavender being the new neutral since spring of '07. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/arti… Here are some excerpts:
    "Go really pale or really deep," says Chicago designer Anne Coyle. "Avoid midrange because it tends to look childish." "The best shades are those that have been paled-down, dirtied, weathered," says London designer and author Stephanie Hoppen. "This makes them sophisticated rather than sweet…"

  8. Joan says:

    From the business perspective as a realtor, I'm quite familiar with the phrase 'neutralize it'. The lavender would likely work against a seller, so we would suggest they paint, NOT necessarily beige. There are a lot of terrific colors that might not be a first choice for the buyer, but they can see past it. Most won't however, see past all the distractions in the makeover room. There is WAY too much going on with the patterns in the plates, candlesticks, blinds, radiator cover and small chair. This is the kind of room that they later talk about and say "Crown molding? I don't remember any crown molding".
    On a personal note…I am looking for the perfect lavender/grey for my master bedroom…LOVE IT!

  9. Carrie says:

    I agree with some of the other posts, that this was not one of Monica's best design ideas. I don't think the lavender was a good choice to use with the COLONIAL design elements, it wasn't a good match. The lavender is a soothing color, so with the right furniture/decor, I think it would be a fantastic color in a dining room.

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