Sure signs for replacing a toilet include recurring clogs, porcelain cracks and scratches, and needing to replace too many parts in the tank. But these days, one reason reigns supreme for replacing the porcelain throne: water conservation. Toilet flushing accounts for nearly 30 percent of residential indoor water consumption according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). You can save $2,000 over the lifetime of the toilet in your home by going with a high-performance, low-flow option. That long-term savings trumps an inexpensive, temporary fix on an older toilet model.
When decorator Nick Olsen moved into his 525-square-foot studio in New York City, the walls were painted white, in keeping with small-space convention. "But the place just looked gray and dingy," says Olsen. And so, rather than just slapping on a newer, brighter coat of white, he painted the apartment's main room Oregano Green (Benjamin Moore 2147-10), in an oil-based metal enamel, to resemble lacquer.
"Although the apartment is small," says Olsen, "it's actually rather grand with 12-foot ceilings, huge windows and a high-relief fireplace. So I felt it would be a shame to tone it down with a pale color or white." For even more impact, he painted the doors glossy black and the trim white, and added a deep teal velvet sofa. Olsen didn't shy away from bright color in the 35- (yes, 35!) square-foot kitchen either, wallpapering the fridge in a bright spring pattern and painting the walls and the ceiling Sea Mist Green (Benjamin Moore #2041-50). "To make color work in a really tiny room like this kitchen," Olsen suggests, "paint the walls and ceilings the same color so you're eye doesn't stop at the ceiling line."
A fresh minty green called "Restful" (SW 6458) from the HGTV Home paint collection by Sherwin-Williams evokes an airy coastal feeling in this bright sunroom. The table coated in "Rapture Blue" (SW 6773) draws the eye further into the space. Botanical prints hang on the paneled walls, lending to this coastal cottage feel. An eclectic mix of wicker and traditional furniture in whites, neutrals, and blues sets the tone for the casual space. White curtains allow for plenty of natural light and a white throw rug over hardwood flooring anchors the room.
Dark walls in a small space don't have to be a bad thing if used the right way. Designer Gail Fedela used olive walls to open the space up, but kept it light and airy with lots of white in the window treatments, accessories and bed linens.
This cozy sitting room is furnished with overstuffed seating around the brick fireplace. Hunter green walls, floral textiles and a bucolic painting exemplify rustic elegance in this country-style living space.
Jade green walls create an luxurious backdrop to this eclectic living room. Part of a stunning mansion in Marrakech, Morocco, the living room boasts Moroccan style, tons of natural light and beautiful architectural details, like arched doorways and windows.
An open plan makes this a combination kitchen and dining room area. The kitchen's dark wood cabinets and stove are offset by the modern white of the cabinets, built-in eating bench, curtains and chair covers and contrast nicely with the lime green walls. The eclectic lighting fixtures highlight the beamed ceiling.
Custom bedding, Schumacher wallpaper and a white exposed-beam ceiling lend style and character to this transitional bedroom. The green focal wall is mirrored in the curtains, while gold bedding and accents complement the green.
Against a wall painted lime green, this alabaster white bookshelf provides a sharp contrast. Items displayed on the shelf include white books and white ceramic pieces, including a topiary plant and coral.
The fireplace — a rare design element in a breakfast nook — brings a homeyness and warmth to this family eating space. Different shades of green are used throughout the room to emphasize and repeat the bold color choice. Multiple tones of wood are grounding and traditional; the unique chandelier adds a striking modern flair.
This living room's got personality! Bright blue and kelly green come together to create a space that's both soothing and full of punch. Because the room has such high ceilings, the vibrant colors don't feel constricting. Multi-patterned throw pillows keep the room from looking overly formal, and plants scattered throughout the space make it really come alive.
Walls the soft hue of sea mist and a pair of tranquil tropical paintings turn this California bedroom into a soothing retreat. A soft blue quilted coverlet borrows its color from the walls, while a traditional rug grounds the space and pairs nicely with the banded and monogrammed bedding. Beams criss-cross the ceiling and echo the lines of the board and batten walls.