Further Proof of How Stir-Crazy the Hardwood Install is Making Us
A slightly freaked-out update at 12:31 am

A Million Shades of Beige




Oh. Hi. I'm sorry. I'm just a little busy over here, lying on the ground, making kissy faces to my new floors.

No, I'm not actually kissing my new floors. That would be weird. Also I could smudge them.

Jesus Christ, take your damn shoes off! These floors are not for walking on. My God. They are for admiring. From over there. A little further. One more step. Outside the door. Yes. Thanks.

Can you still hear me? I'll shout, if that helps.

So the floors are done. And there's not much else to say except that hey, the floors are done. I'm actually kind of shocked about it, since the guy we hired said they would be done in a week and lo, they were done in a week. And they cost exactly what he told us they would cost, which was suspiciously not very much at all. I'm actually more than kind of shocked about that. Every day I kept waiting for him to tell us he'd made a mistake, that the job couldn't be done for the price he quoted, or that his team couldn't work tomorrow like they thought, but how's our August look?


When we remodeled our kitchen and floors at our old place (while I was pregnant), we were told the whole thing would take about two weeks. Five months later (and still pregnant) I couldn't even write about what we were going through because it seemed very likely that we'd end up facing our contractor in court. Utterly delightful, and hey, did I mention I was pregnant?

Now the only challenge that remains is some painting. Scuffs and dings and things. The previous owners graciously left all the paint they used, but neglected to label any of the cans, and we've since discovered that every goddamn wall is actually painted a slightly different color.

If you just walk through the house, you'd swear that every single goddamn wall is a sort of yellowish beige. But they are not the same yellowish beige. But oh no, we have Bronzed Beige. We have Yosemite Sand. We have Powell Buff and Lancaster Whitewash and Putnam Ivory and some phantom shade of beige in the master bathroom that does not appear to be ANY of these shades of beige, and I am going to kill the master bathroom because I AM NOT REPAINTING THE MASTER BATHROOM ANOTHER SHADE OF BEIGE JUST BECAUSE OF ONE GODDAMN HOLE IN ONE GODDAMN BEIGE WALL.


(The previous owner actually attempted to patch the hole prior to our final walkthrough, and admitted that he'd used the wrong paint color. "I used Yosemite Sand," he said. "And now that I think about it, the bathroom walls are Barbados Sand." He looked and sounded like a man beaten down by his wife's love of the Benjamin Moore Palette of Barely Different Beiges, so I didn't ask if there was a can of Barbados Sand down in the basement.)

(There was not a can of Barbados Sand in the basement, and Barbados Sand does not appear to exist anymore, at least not under that name, and again, I am going to kill the master bathroom, or perhaps just start hanging really random towel racks all over the place.)

(Hey, it worked for the downstairs bathroom. Each one of these animals is covering some sort of Jason-inflicted wall damage, since we haven't been able to figure out this shade of green either.)


(I'm pretty sure it's Fernwood Green, since I brought every single greenish paint chip home after discovering a big ding in the wall under the toilet paper holder. It's time to stop hiding our laziness with woodland creatures and buy some damn paint, I think.)

Jason insisted I was crazy when I told him I suspected that the living room, dining room and foyer were actually three different paint colors. Like, he got angry with me. Like I was being difficult on purpose.


I hate being right all the time, I really do.

Wall-related melodrama aside, we're happy. The house looks like our house now. It feels like our house.

And I really don't mind yellowish beige.




My god people are crazy.. they really are - not you of course the crazies you bought the house from!


First to say, looks great!


How cute are those shoes? I covet those shoes. Can I have those shoes? Wait... was I supposed to be looking at walls or something?

Fraulein N

That's nice, that you tried to paint over the dings. We've got several patches of joint compound classing up the walls in our place. I think I want to kiss your floors too. Also, and perhaps more importantly, where'd you get those cute shoes?

stay-at-home mommy

Is it really true? Americans wear shoes in the house? Please say it ain't so... What if it rains? Or snows? Do you track mud inside? Oh lord, I'd be rug doctoring every day...

The floors look awesome, by the way. And those woodland creatures are hysterical. It almost looks like an arrangement, except for that one down at knee level...

Mrs. Butter B

Scary. Scary beige house, scary beige color chips, scary period.

What happened to lovely color? Cheerful, bright, happy color?

I miss color.

(But I do LOVE your hardwood floors, such a lovely choice)

jive turkey

Well, hello, cute shoes. I am glad you are not beige.

You've gotta love those little surprises left by the previous owners. For us, it was the discovery that half the trim on the first floor was just sitting there, not actually attached to the wall. In case it wanted to visit a different room someday, I guess.

Woman with Kids

You have a PAINT CAN on the new floor! Is this ALLOWED?

Sorry for the yelling, but I wasn't sure you'd hear me from here, outside the door, where I was told to stand...


Love your shoes and the new floors.

My DH would get angry over the color thing too if he hadn't noticed it himself. ;-)

The Muse

Okay, I hope I'm not stating the obvious, but...

Depending on how long ago it was that the last owners painted the house, the color may have faded. Though I wouldn't suggest as much as the sample you have of the 3 beiges, it is possible, particularly in rooms that get a lot of natural sunlight.

Plus, when you try to match up colors on a chip, that's always frustrating. We picked out this lovely rose color for my bedroom as a child, and by the time we got it home and up on the walls, it was PURPLE. Like this weird, lavender/magenta color.


Floor Whore.


Except to tell you that I am practically LEAKING JEALOUSY all over my keyboard.


Oh, painting. My husband and I just found a lovely, charming old home to rent here in the Silicon Valley. Charming, meaning, built in 1921, charming meaning, it needs some lovin'. A few coats of paint. And every wall has at least three coats of paint underneath, one of which being, and let me just quote the landlord here, "Pepto Bismal pink". It's a very accurate description. I love your hole-covering choices, and would love to use it, but I don't think we own any wall hanging large enough to cover, say, an entire bathroom wall....love the floors though. LOVE.


Did I see you and your guys at the Woodley Park metro this morning, 8ish? In a cute black dress? If so, Dude, where did you get that dress?


Once, when I moved to Portland and my parents went with me to help me move my crap up there, we stayed with friends there for the weekend before my parents left. When my mom got home, she went out and bought a painting of a bunny rabbit as a thank you gift for my friends, the hosts. Unfortunately, they are not woodland creatures type people. They are West Elm type people and gave me the painting for a White Elephant Christmas gift. It appears it would go quite perfectly in that bathroom of your's!


Am delurking to say that I love your blog and am totally jealous of your new floors...they look amazing!

Hubby and I are thinking about putting in hardwoods, any chance you would pass along the name of your guy?


I, too, am delurking because I adore those shoes. please share where you got them! oh, yeah, nice floors, too, but since I am stuck in apartment rental purgatory and can't buy yet, I have to focus on your shoes rather than your beautiful house.


I just wanted to say that your previous post about the "mysterious stains on the carpets" scared the snot out of me, as I read it just hours before my husband and I closed on our first house. Where the previous owners had cats. I'm trying not to think about it too much.

Also? Our house had a room that polite people would call "Peptobismal Pink," but my husband called "titty pink." We went to our friendly hardware store to pick out new paint, and at one point, my husband cried that all of the colors are the same. I think it's a guy thing.

Nothing But Bonfires

Um, I need those shoes. Please dish on their origins. Especially if they were on sale. Recently.

Heather B.

Dude, where did you get those shoes??

Also, when may I come and look at the floors?


Once you figure out the right shade of beige (if there is such a thing), I highly suggest the Rubbermaid Paint Buddy. It keeps me sane every time I decide to move the GIGANTIC mirror from one wall to the other. (Because it looks better there.) (Because I said so.) No brushes to clean up and since they're small enough to keep in the laundry room, you won't have to venture to the paint corner of the basement. Unfortunately, the fact that it's so easy also leaves very little room for slacking. Good luck in your hunt for beige-y goodness!

Wacky Mommy

I concur -- cute shoes!

We did all off-white -- living room, dining room, 2 of the 3 bedrooms. Same boring shade. The next person who lives here will be very happy.

"...difficult on purpose..."?? As if -- it is a gift we come by naturally.


I hate you and your floors are ugly. (So jealous!)

P.S. Take a chip of the paint from the wall to a good paint store and have them MATCH IT. (We own a painting company!) Also, even if you use the paint in the cans, if the paint on the walls has been up for any length of time (over 2 mos)it has faded, or has dust/dirt embedded in it, especially from the wood floor install, and will not exactly match, anyway. Patching paint is nearly impossible, unless you MATCH IT to what is on the wall. - I'm sure that made your day, but I don't feel bad...you've got wood floors. Whore.


Am I the only one who wants to know what Jason does to the walls? While standing (presumably) at the toilet?


Your new floors are so pretty -- from outside!

As for the paint situation? At least they were nice enough to leave 8 cans of almost-the-exact-same-color-but-not-quite for touch ups.


Welcome to the wooden floor club! You're going to love them, rolling dust bunnies and all. We refinished our floors when we moved to our new house in September. It was so worth sleeping in the living room for a week while waiting for the bedroom to be done. Ok, it was actually more like two months, but there were remodeling complications.
Good luck with the beiges.


Hee...everytime I start talking about painting this room or that, the Mr. shouts, "Oh, yippee! Yet ANOTHER shade of brown!"

And your floors are so, so lovely.


Yosemite Sand? As in Yosemite Sam, the Looney Toons character? Hahahahahaha!!! Where do they come up with these things?

Amy M

I bought a house to escape beige! And exactly how many rooms have a painted in 3 years? 3. Good luck matching!

Another message coveting your shoes! And they seem to go nicely with the paint can. But why are you wearing shoes on your nice new floor? Perhaps it's just my Asian upbringing, but shoes aren't allowed inside!


we have the EXACT same granite in our bathroom. I can tell you a really good "orange-y" beige that goes well with it AND it is by Benjamin Moore! =)


Your shoes! They are wonderful. I must know where they came from.


Just an FYI for anyone looking for the shoes - they are Coach Noel ballet flats from the summer line. They're off the website now, but you might still be able to find them in stores or via the 800 number.

I covet those floors. Am stuck with awful, bad (BAD!) carpeting because I rent. Bah. :D


Shoes are very cute! The house is awesome. I'm thinking now you should go outside and get a tan. lol!!! Hahaha, now you can hate me!

erin rae

Now that you've accepted the house as is... I just want to tell you that Barbados Sand does still exist. #1094 It's one of Benjamin Moore's Classic Colors.

I know I'm a freak. I don't want to talk about it.

p.s. I also ADORE the shoes. Perhaps you should give them to me for solving the paint crisis? ;-)


Those are adorable shoes :-)


Oh wow! Those are some beautiful floors! I would definitely have bent down and kissed them. I'm not ashamed to say it.


Whatever walls and floors.

Hello, shooooooooooes.


As far as the walls go, just wear the shoes when friends come over, the women will be focused on the shoes and most men will probably not notice either walls or shoes, problem solved.
Floors...beautiful :)

Suzy Q

Shoe show-off! Floor show-off! Bah.


Those shoes are adorable.

When we moved into our house ten years ago, the previous owners left us, among other things, a dirty diaper. Also, technicolor walls. (A mint green dining room opening onto a peach-colored living room? Yes. Yes, indeed.)


Love the shoes, especially since they're red....love the floors, have hardwood-floor-envy. So, now comes the search for the perfect rugs, right??!!! One for the living room, under the couch and coffee table, and one for the dining room under the table and chairs....and let's not forget the hall runners.....there are some really, really COOL looking rugs out there and the good news is that they all go with beige!! Waiting for pictures of the floors with the new rugs.......


Nice floors! We did ours about a year ago. Not the worst home improvmement job ever but bad enough. We had the old one torn up and there was dust upon dust!


I recently discovered a paint-related trick whilst devouring 80 million real estate books in preparation to put my house on the market. Those little plastic thingies with the foamy tops that screw onto them, customarily used for shoe-shining? Vastly more useful for touching up little blemishes on the walls.
If ever you get those beiges sorted out (speaking of wish, that is ANOTHER trick I keep seeing, about picking one neutral beigey color you like and then picking one shade lighter and one shade darker and then using THOSEANDONLYTHOSE to paint your whole house), I highly recommend filling one up with each of your shades and storing them somewhere in preparation for erasing things like, um, crayon marks.


The SHOES, chica! I covet!

Mrs. Chicken

Oh my God this made me laugh. Our house is brand new and the asshats who painted it touched up the all-beige walls with a slightly darker shades.

On really bad days, I think it will actually drive me mad.

Still laughing ...

Maxine Dangerous

Hee. Toe cleavage. :)

Paint companies should be punished for making 85 different shades of beige, white, etc. My folks have painted their walls Cloud White, Eggshell White, Snow White (ha!), Milk White (etc.) for the past 20 years. When I lived with them, I would've given my right arm for red or blue or green. Of course then they lost their damn minds and painted the living room some heinous hybrid of raspberry and Pepto pink. Guess I got my wish ... annnnnnnd went blind in the process.

Congrats on pee-free carpet! hardwoods rool. :D


Cute shoes. Mind if Bossy sells them off at her Virtual Yard Sale? Also available: other people's blogs, musty advertising, and purple fonts. Rain or shine, no early birds...



um, hi there... WHO? who did your floors? Please please give me their names so that I may contact them and hopefully get a quote for an also low and reasonable price that will be accomplished in a reasonable amount of time.

moosh in indy.

So did these previous tenants buy all the sale mistint cans of paint they could find while their animals stayed home, bashed holes in the walls and pissed on everything?


I'm just sittn' here loving those SHOES!

Lisa M

The floors are beautiful! I am so jealous, too!! And I bet your house smells so much better...so strange stains emerging with the humidity :)


cute shoes!


They look so good! So happy it is all done for you!


Your shoes totally coordinate with the paint can. Now that's! fashion commitment.


Amalah, you are the creme de la cream, beige, ivory..whatever! As usual ;)

Wouldn't it be cool if the same people who named the OPI nail lacquer colors started a paint line as well?


The floors are gorgeous! So glad the house feels like home now. What a great place to make a family.


When we bought our house, the previous owners had used the same shade for touch-ups, but with a different sheen.

I thought I was losing my mind until I realized what it was.


Morning y'all!

To answer some questions...yes, the shoes are those Coach ballet flats that Ryann linked to. Only I found them at Filene's Basement. On sale! 20% off their already low prices! Score!

(And no, I don't wear them inside. That photo was carefully staged to show them off because they are so kicky and non-beige.)

(Also does anyone remember that our old place was like, fucking bright orange? We're actually kind of happy to be back in the realm of neutrals. Plus my MIL has big fancy plans for a lot of the house once she's done with Noah's room.)

As for the floor guy...I would LOVE to recommend him to anybody who is thinking about installing hardwoods. I'd rather not post his info here, so just email me (amy[at]amalah.com) and I'll pass his name along. He was beyond great.


We're Benjamin Moore palette crazy over here, too. Though not all shades of beige. Putnam Ivory though? Love it. And since you're repainting anyway...why can't you pick one that you like and just go with that? Good ol' Benjy Moore paints are good for covering up former colors. Even if they do cost an arm and a leg!
Love your floors! (And the shoes, too, of course.)


Your bathroom looks like my kitchen - in which case it may be Nantucket Grey, although it all depends on the light.


I feel your paint pain - I recently moved in a new house and struggled to find the perfect colro for the dining room - spending money on umpteen shades of green.

The floors look great!


We have had boxes of wood flooring sitting in our dining room for 3 months now. D(dear?)h said he wanted to do it himself. THREE MONTHS ago.
Enjoy your floors. I drooled at the pics.

aimee greeblemonkey

the floors look fabulous.


Cute shoes! Awesome floors!

And the not-so-strategic placement of the photos in the bathroom? HIGH-larious!


cute shoes!

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