Discovering Sanderson Paint

A few weeks ago I spent a lovely day at the Sanderson Hotel in London with Sanderson for a colour workshop and to check out their re-launched paint collection, including no less than fifty new shades. That’s right, fifty! Their new colour card is a delicious feast for a paint lovers eyes, and I found it tricky to narrow down my favourites.

French For Pineapple Blog - Discovering Sanderson Paint - display of ceramic pots with paint colour range

In fact so much so, that I ended up needing a crazy number of tester pots to help me decide what colours I was going to use for my projects (and before you get cross with me, don't worry, I send all my no longer needed tester pots to the art department at my daughters secondary school, where it is much needed and well used).

French For Pineapple Blog - Discovering Sanderson Paint - Sanderson Paint Chart
Image: Sanderson

Did you know that the Sanderson Hotel is actually the original showroom of the brand? It's ridiculous to think that that I’d never put two and two together before this event, especially as I’d been known to spend a bit of time there propping up the bar before kids. Or maybe because of that.... Either way, it was lovely to know about the buildings history, and to be there whilst hearing about the new paint colours.

French For Pineapple Blog - Discovering Sanderson Paint - Sanderson Paint Can with Floral Display

I was looking for a new colour for the front door - a job that had been on my list for over two years (eek!), a hall colour, and a deep rich colour for one wall on the top landing. A spot very rarely, if ever seen on my blog!

I’d originally been planning to paint the front door a lilac shade, but in the end pink won out, and I went for Rose Ash Light. A very pretty pale pink shade, that is really set off so beautifully by the new brass hardware. I absolutely love it. More than I even thought I would, and it makes me happy every time I come home. You can't argue with that now can you?

French For Pineapple Blog - Discovering Sanderson Paint - close up of brass door knob on Pink Ash Light paint
As with so many things that I take ages to get around to doing, it was actually a really quick job, requiring only a light sand, and a coat of primer, followed by two coats of the colour. I used the water based Eggshell which is suitable for interior and exterior woodwork, it's is a really great consistency and super easy to work with.

French For Pineapple Blog - Discovering Sanderson Paint - Pink Victorian Front Door painted in Pink Ash Light
I had heard good things about Sanderson paint, and they were all true, and the coverage was brilliant. I love the pink so much, that I'm thinking about doing the inside of the door too. Who am I kidding? I'm totally going to do the inside of the door - such a beautiful colour!

For the majority of the hall I've chosen Birch White, which is a really beautiful warm off-white, that is firmly on my list of brilliant light neutrals. I've said before that these colours are particularly tricky to get right, so I keep a list of the best ones.

French For Pineapple Blog - Discovering Sanderson Paint - close up of pink front door painted in Pink Ash Light

This will eventually go on all the hall, stairwell and landing walls and I'll do all the woodwork in the same colour. However, as anyone that's taken on the painting of a hall, stairwells and landings in a three storey Victorian semi will tell you, this is not a quick job, so I'll be updating you when that's done in the new year. I'm looking forward to this brighter but still warm shade going on, as a fresh coat of paint in the hall is particularly satisfying!

French For Pineapple Blog - Discovering Sanderson Paint - Sofa on landing near stairs with gallery wall painted in Beech Grey

At the very top of the house on the landing, I wanted to create a little reading area and use a deeper shade on that wall to zone it and make it feel extra cosy. I chose Beech Grey, which is definitely more brown than grey to my eye, and I absolutely love it. This spot is flooded with light, so during the day it's anything but dark, but it has a beautiful richness, with the shade adding a definite air of boutique hotel chic to the space.

French For Pineapple Blog - Discovering Sanderson Paint - Sofa and Stella Vine gallery wall painted in Beech Grey

At night by lamplight it's deep and inviting. And in fact, again I'm thinking of taking the colour onto all the walls on this landing - seems a shame to just have one wall of such a lovely colour.

I'm super pleased with my colour choices, and the Sanderson collection of 154 colours is a great size. Enough so that it's not too limited, but not too many as to be completely overwhelming. As Goldilocks would say, this is juuuuuust right.

Do go and check out the range yourself here.

French For Pineapple Blog - Discovering Sanderson Paint - Stella Vine Gallery wall painted in Beech Grey

This post is in collaboration with Sanderson.


Lately I've been drawn more and more to monochromatic rooms, that stick to a very limited colour palette, and layer using that palette only. Colour Drenching as I like to call it. It's incredibly striking and draws me in every time.

The most famous example of Colour Drenching that I can think of is The Gallery at Sketch. Bathed in a sea of baby pink upon more baby pink, is it any wonder that Sketch is London's most Instagrammed restaurant? It doesn't get much more striking than this! I've been a few times, but feel another visit will be required soon to get my fix. I need to sit in a different part of the room so I can admire more of David Shrigley's art whilst happily sat in that pink sea.

The Gallery at Sketch London Colour Drenching - French For Pineapple Blog
Image: India Mahdavi / The Gallery at Sketch London

Colour Drenching kind of reminds me of the sets of The Cook, The Thief, His Wife & Her Lover, albeit less dramatic, and less about the lighting, but where going from one room to another completely changes the atmosphere, and looking from one room to another is an exciting visual feast.

If you've not seen that film, you should do yourself a favour and track it down, but be warned, the subject matter is somewhat disturbing. Maybe read the blurb first, and definitely don't watch it with the kids!

I love the idea of having rooms that are not referred to as The Living Room, The Dining Room, The Kitchen and The Bedroom, but instead, the Pink Room, the Blue Room, the Green Room and so on, where the colour of each room completely envelops you.

It's not hard to achieve this look, but you do have to be committed. Start by matching your walls to your sofa or largest piece or pieces of furniture in the room. And by painting all the woodwork the same colour as the walls, you're well on your way.

Suddenly, my white trims seem SO dull and old fashioned. I have a terrible feeling this urge is going to result in a whole load of trim painting throughout the house in the coming months. Oh dear.

To really nail the look you need to be ruthless, fearless and completely unapologetic. Decide on your colour and stick to it. Use a colour that's saturated enough otherwise you run the risk of it being dull, which is the opposite of what you're trying to achieve! The more you stick to your colour, the more dramatic the effect. Use wood tones, black, white and metallic accents as they won't diminish the overall effect. And texture has never been more important if you're going to pull off this look. Layer, layer, layer.

Looking to Sketch again for an example, there's a marble herringbone floor, the upholstery is all rich velvet, and there are lots of brass accents. Metallics are neutrals, so use them freely.

Let's look at some more shining examples...

The interior designers of Hotel Providence in Paris have nailed Colour Drenching with the help of some of my favourite House of Hackney prints...

Hotel Providence Colour Drenching - French For Pineapple Blog
Images: Hotel Providence

Not quite adhering to the Colour Drenching rules, but still with a similar effect - I love this wall and upholstery colour...

Colour Drenching - French For Pineapple Blog
Image: Neptune

And last, but most definitely not least, some green and a spot of teal...

Colour Drenching - French For Pineapple Blog
Left: Panton designed Der Spiegel office lobby (Image source unkown) / Right: Duvan Interiors

What do you think? Would you be brave enough to Colour Drench? I'd love to hear your thoughts!