The Dos and Don'ts of Painting Tough Spaces

Create high-impact moments with these easy tips for painting unexpected areas.

We love an unexpected, surprise detail which is why we're smitten with the idea of sprucing up some oft overlooked spaces with a fresh coat of paint. While painting a doorway or highlighting picture moulding may not seem like a task for which you need a manual, we are happy to offer some thoughtful suggestions on how to get the look, the best way possible. 1
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Do: Go bold and paint your staircase's railing and banister an attention-getting color.

Don't: Forget the balustrade. We love the modern look that comes with painting everything one solid color.

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Do: Draw attention to a featured wall and add a sense of architecture by painting your fireplace.

Don't: Stop halfway. If the wall the fireplace is on juts out from it's surroundings, emphasize this focal point by carrying the paint from floor to ceiling-including the fireplace surround.

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Do: Add interest and a pop of color by painting the top and sides of your doorway an unexpected hue.

Don't: Try to match the color of the trim in the connecting rooms. The novelty of the look comes from the individuality of the detail. It's like creating a small room connecting your larger spaces.

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Do: Highlight the inherent, or recently added, architectural detail of picture moulding by painting it in a different color than the rest of the walls.

Don't: Be shy. The higher the contrast between the two (or more, if you're brave) colors, the more your walls (and any art hanging on them) will stand out.

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Do: Paint the interior of your case pieces a contrasting color to bring attention to their lines and any treasures you'll be displaying within.

Don't: Forget the sides, top, and shelves themselves. While painting just the back will certainly garner attention, painting all of the interior lends the piece a more sophisticated, finished look.

Have you painted an unexpected area recently? Tweet us a picture at @DomaineHome Photographs: Catherine Kwong Design and Bess Friday via Elle Decor, via house to Home, via SF Girl by the Bay, Dior, via Dwell, via Yatzer, Tim Young via House and Home, via Nuevo Estilo, Steven Gambrel via Elle Decor, Marcia Sherrill and Summer Loftin via Atlanta Homes, via House and Home, Kelley Proxmire, Lauren Buxbaum via Lonny.
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