My Secret Room

I wish that was true…that I had a real secret room.  Wouldn’t it be awesome to have a little room that was hidden behind a door or an oversized mirror?  Mine would be filled with extra soft blankets and fluffed pillows that had tins of fancy cookies and champagne with strawberries.  There would be no toys in sight and it would have a button I could push that would turn the entire space into ‘nap mode’ where it drowned out all noise and provided a babysitter on site.  It would be amazing.

But that’s not the secret room that I’m talking about.  I’m talking about the dining room.  I’ll explain.  Here’s what it started off like, right…   

and we sprayed the trim and painted the ceiling…

Then came time for paint!  I knew I wanted to go dark.  REALLY dark.  I didn’t know if it was gonna be brown or navy or dark gray…




but in the end, the dark dark gray by Benjamin Moore called SECRET was the winner.  Oh and I do like to try it on all the walls to see how it looks in different light.  It’s good to test it like that because there is always that color that has undertones that might come out in the bright area or might be darker than you like in a corner.

It took me two coats (FULLY MIXING THE CANS!  because heaven knows nobody wants streaks to happen again.) but in the end, it was exactly what I wanted.

It’s amazing how much it pops out against the white. 

I think that in a space that has white halfway up the wall and a lot of white trim work can sport a really dark color easily.  It’s probably the safest space to put a dark color in. 

And some folks were asking about my high vents…I paint them.  I just paint them whatever color the wall is.  It helps them disappear.

This is the view back into the foyer and the staircase and reading room. 

Then came time for moving back in.  I flexed the girl power muscles and did it all myself.  Quick tip…turn FLOR tiles upside down and use them as sliders.  They work awesome!  

This room is definitely a work in progress.  I need a recovery drink though…something loaded with protein after that furniture moving :)

So now that you have seen my secret room…I wanna hear about yours…anyone with a fantasy secret room?  Dish.



  1. Joanne says

    LOVE IT – just a request —– can you put a before/after either side by side or one right on top of each other in your pics so we can easily compare the greatness that is KB?!?

  2. JenB says

    Be sure to post a pic of the room all loaded back up (can you tell I’m from the South, or what??). I want to pin it on Pinterest. The color is wonderful!

  3. Melissa says

    oh my! I cant wait to see how this room turns out!! I seriously love it so far!! And from all the ideas im stealing between your house & YHL my house is going to come together really nicely :)

  4. says

    The dark walls are so pretty! I think I want a secret tree house instead! I have always wanted a tree house. Filled with books! And a zipline!

  5. Constance says

    Pretty color!! Do you have any plans to pain the inlay (not sure what that’s called) but the recess between the molding and the inner-molding? Like it was before? So nice!

    • says

      Nope. We actually went back and forth before about it…in the end, I liked the white. I think I knew I wanted to go dark with the walls and I wanted the most amount of white everywhere else :)
      xo – kb

  6. SunshineGal85 says

    Though I love the SECRET color, I thought for sure it would darken the room to a dungeon-esque point, but you still have lots of natural light thanks to all those windows in the reading room and the two doors in the dining room. And it really pops against that stark white trim, too. Quick question. I just mentioned the two doors in your dining room, and I know you have at least half a dozen other doors that wrap around the first floor of your house. How many times have you actually entered or exit through those dining room doors? How many doors do you actually have? How many of them do you actually use? Silly questions, but I’m just curious.

    • says

      We have five doors that go onto our front porch (besides the center double front doors)…and we use one. The one that is on the side of the house to get to the little side porch area. The others we just treat like windows :)
      xo – kb

      • SunshineGal85 says

        Goodness! That’s a lot of “windows” to wash! And that doesn’t even include your kitchen & LR doors to the back deck, garage, and basement doors?! I hope you have all the locks keyed to the same master. You’d look like a janitor walking around otherwise. :)

  7. Trish says

    I would have two secret rooms, one just like yours cause that sounds AMAZING! and the second would be full of cash (clean straight from the press), that I could count and roll around in and pretend that I was the uncle duck from Talespin (was that the name of the cartoon?).

    and I LOVE YOUR style! I was hesitant about the paint samples but it goes so well with the white, you are definitely right about dark colors needing brightness. You are doing a beautiful job with your house.


  8. says

    I’m sure someone else already pointed this out, but the white trim looks so good on that decorative entryway. I really like seeing the difference with the picture where you can see the ugly tan colored one in the background. It just stands out so much better. Why would anyone paint their trim tan…good job on the painting. I think I need a paint spray thing now!

  9. says

    Love that dark color! I was thinking of something similar to that for our bedroom. Something dark and cozy.

    My secret room would be similar to yours with endless plush pillows and blankets but I would have to include a TV, a cupcake switch that would give me endless cupcakes, a window for gazing, and a canvas and paint in the corner. Yes…heaven…

  10. candice Q says

    LOL I knew you would pick the gray before I even scrolled down! Do I read your blog too much or what?!!

  11. Anje says

    Do you use a high gloss or semi-gloss for your trim paint? I love how it gleams in the photos. I have a house full of white trim, too.

  12. Jen says

    I painted our dining room the same exact BM color (Secret) a little over a year ago, and still love it – it’s a GREAT color! (our seems a blue-ish grey most days) Enjoy the “new” room!

  13. says

    At first I didn’t really understand why you didn’t like the trim color, because from your earlier pictures I couldn’t tell that much of a difference, but with the latest picture, when you see the dining room and your front door – wow, what a difference! I L-O-V-E LOVE the update you did. The dark gray color is awesome, and you’re right, the trim needed a desperate change.

    I wish I could do something gray in my house, but I have beige carpeting and beige tile throughout the entire house =(

    Not sure I’ve ever commented on here at all before, but I love your blog!

  14. says

    LOVING the dark. You are so right about the huge white moulding anchoring a rich dark color. Brilliant. I love that southern, classic charm in your mouldings. Our place was built in the 80s in a more angular, modern vein, and I just want chair rails and mouldings everywhere but I have to be cognizant of the actual architecture we have to work with. Annoying. I want frames over every doorway. Which doesn’t work when the top is a triangle. Ug.

  15. says

    The room turned out beautiful! I agree, the high amount of white balances the dark quite well. Can I have that room for my secret room? I’d furnish it with really comfy couches and books, I think – and perhaps a chocolate fountain with a fruit stand next to it ;)

  16. says

    hate kate, I know this not related to this post but I was just wondering, what happened to your photography updates? I’m not bashing because honestly, I give you major props for finishing a kitchen, fire pit, AND working on the living room while in your last (and past your last) week of pregnancy and TOTALLY understand having your hands full now with two little men running around (literally, soon enough) I was just missing some of your amazing photo session posts you used to do. Are you still doing photography (apart from things for posts?) I read that you were ‘slowing down’ in a way with how many photos you take but does that mean ending it as a job too? I’ma little lost. -.-

  17. says

    After my roommate painted her room navy and yellow (and by that I mean 90% dark, dark navy) I have been terrified of painting anything a dark tone! And now we have to paint it back…but I digress. Th is has completely changed my mind. It looks so pretty when done right :) My secret room would consist of books and probably blanket forts. And endless pizza roles.

  18. says

    LOVE IT! I am wanting to go dark in my future kiddo’s room because the ceiling, trim and future board and batten will all be bright white. But… that kiddo’s room hasn’t been emptied out by big sis (her room also is going to be remodeled) and kiddo #2 isn’t due for 6 months so that’s my deadline. Love this color, if I change my mind from the navy, gray is definitely my second choice! This would look gorgeous in a kitchen with all white cabinets too.

  19. says

    omgeeee this looks amazing!! WHAT a difference!! Love the colour and love the white trimmings. Can’t wait to see this room all done up :)

  20. says

    Katie! That color is perfection! Literally jaw-dropping. I LOVE how crisp and classy the trim work looks now that it is white… and that dark gray is so swoon-worthy. Girl. Good choice.

  21. candice Q says

    How come my comment didn’t get published? :(
    I am such a loyal reader and I made an observation that your color choice is very predictable that a bad thing?

    • says

      Yes I did too…if you are talking about the plates :) But the problem was that the plate hangers I used didn’t allow me to get them to overlap like that. I was bummed but still it’s a random collection in a low profile place…so who cares…right?!
      xo – kb

  22. says

    Can time stop in our secret room? Think I’d like to just take a nap in there and no one know. ;) love love love the dark walls. Contrast is so sexy!

    • says

      Control time continuam…be in charge things on a molecular level…determine the level of gravity…all yes :)
      xo – kb

  23. Katie says

    Hi Katie – where did you get the yellow curtains in the first pic? I’ve been looking for ones that are that same shade of yellow and having a really tough time! I’d actually prefer if they had some kind of pattern (just white and yellow though… although a little gray mixed in would be okay), so other suggestions are welcome, too :)


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