Color Spot: Feign the Look of Molding with Paint

Green Paint Chair Rail Border

White is Not Always Right

Most people ask me how to introduce color into their small space. When you live in a limited floorpan, the popular belief is that white is the most expansive color to use. I beg to differ.

White Hallway Before

White Hallway Before

This formerly all-white, 400-square foot studio in NYC needed a foyer that commanded attention to prevent what I call shoebox syndrome. Character and depth trumps white and boxy any day of the week.

Green Paint Front Door Border

Faux Chair Railing and Molding

Add splashes of a bold color by painting only parts of the wall. My design approach is to tape off and paint a 36-tall border,  a little less than midpoint up the wall. I think of it as my “faux” chair rail molding and in this tiny hallway, it provides just the right amount of verdant green without overpowering the tiny niche.


Don’t forget doorways. I carried the painted border over the kitchen entryway and onto the top and bottom of the front door,  giving the foyer a grander opening.