Transforming a New York Loft with Neutrals

Transforming a New York Loft with Neutrals

17 November 2022

Walls, ceiling and woodwork: Skimmed Milk White No.W7Window frames: Pitch Black No. 256.

Patrick Janelle has dreamed of living in a classic New York loft ever since moving to the big city, with a vision of something airy and light with a hint of industrial chic. A few years down the line he found the perfect place to make his dream a reality, so it was time to start decorating.

Like many of us, Patrick loves neutral tones. These versatile shades are incredibly popular and it’s easy to see why – they’re subtle but still impact the way a room feels. Patrick just needed a little help unleash their potential so called one of our Colour Consultants.

Take a tour of the transformed space by watching the film below or read on to find out how colour consultancy helped bring each room to life.

Working with a Farrow & Ball Colour Consultant

Patrick’s vision was a chic, industrial and notably neutral apartment, with a touch of the Parisian flair he’s “always coveted”. Our expert Colour Consultants take everything into account, from lighting and architecture to how you use the space, to create the perfect palette, So, we were perfectly placed to help Patrick bring his style to life.

“What I loved most about working with the Colour Consultant,” says Patrick “was understanding the impacts of my impulses and instincts. I wanted to be sure that, ultimately, I was creating a hospitable vibe for myself and for guests.

“On first glance you might not notice how the neutrals create different feelings throughout the space, but I distinctly feel the impact.”

Main Living Area



Walls, ceiling and woodwork: Skimmed Milk White No.W7.

Patrick’s main living space is an open-plan room that includes his living room, dining room and kitchen. The space is almost entirely painted in Skimmed Milk White, to make the most of the space’s natural light.

“Ultimately,” says Patrick, “we decided to go with Skimmed Milk White (I love that we decided to paint everything—ceiling, trim and walls in the same colour) because I don’t get a ton of light. That can sometimes make the place feel drab but Skimmed Milk White has a hint of subtle green, so even though it's neutral, it enlivens the space. It also works really well with the warmish light reflected off the buildings across the street.”

This transformation also uses one of our favourite decorating tricks for low-light spaces: painting your window frames a darker shade to make the wall colour feel even brighter by comparison. It can seem a little scary initially but it’s very effective, as Patrick discovered: “The most surprising thing the Colour Consultant suggested was painting the living room window frames in Pitch Black. They had been white and she said the colour would act as a strong underscore, like eyeliner. I love the way they turned out!”





Walls: Skimmed Milk White No.W7 and Lichen No.19. Photos by Sam Ortiz

To break up the open plan space, gentle colours have been used to create zones. This new, compact kitchen at one end of Patrick’s living area is the perfect example. The back wall of the kitchen alcove is painted in Lichen, a muted green that accentuates the green undertone of the surrounding Skimmed Milk White. The result is an area that feels connected but still a little separate.

“I might have to say the kitchen is my favourite room!” says Patrick. “Lichen provides just enough richness to make the open kitchen distinct and distinguished. I love how it works with my existing artwork, my marble counters, and brass accents.”




Walls, ceiling and woodwork: Wimborne White No.239.

The transition from the main living space to the bedroom shows how neutrals can shape the mood. Using the slightly cooler Wimborne White for both the bedroom and the hallway leading to it has created what Patrick calls “ultimate calm”.

“My bedroom is my ultimate sanctuary,” continues Patrick “and I keep it very minimal. It's a place for me to escape.”




Walls, ceiling and woodwork: Tallow, No.203.

In contrast they settled on a richer shade for the office, to create an inspiring, productive place to work from home. Patrick explains: “My office is painted Tallow, a super warm white. In the afternoon, the sun glows in the space, and the resulting feeling is super energetic without you noticing. It's perfect for a workspace where I need to concentrate and have the stamina to sit for hours and get work done.”

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