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Wild at heart

From the Resene/Your Home and Garden Colour Home Awards Competition - 2010 Grand Winner

Using Resene colours, Erina Emery let her imagination run wild while decorating her home, winning her the $5000 first prize in the Resene Colour Home Awards.

Eriana and Matts family
Erina and Matt Emery and (from left) Mason, 7, Zoe, 4, and Oliver, 2, are taking a mid-winter break in Fiji with the $5000 prize money.


Erina Emery’s creative approach to decorating her Auckland home has won her first prize in the Resene Colour Home Awards. Resene marketing manager Karen Warman says Erina’s use of strong colour makes her house stand out. “The attention to detail gives each room a unique personality that suits its use. Such care means that each room shines in its own right.”

Erina gave the dining area a warm and sunny feel with Resene Turbo.

Your Home & Garden editor Leanne Moore adds: “We loved the way Erina thought outside of the box. The red staircase is a bold and daring way to enhance an area that can often be overlooked in a home,” she says. “And the dramatic painted stripes in the bathroom are a unique display of creativity that is rarely seen in people’s homes. Well done Erina!”

Hallway and kitchen
Erina and Zoe head outdoors from the hallway, which is dominated by the vibrant red staircase. The walls are painted in Resene Alabaster. “I love colour and I have always wanted a house where I could let my imagination run wild. I spent months planning and deciding how to revitalise and refresh the interior. ”

The staircase

  • Built in the 1990s when another storey was added, Erina says the varnished staircase needed updating.
  • She made it a feature by laying rich red carpet and painting the stair rails to match the carpet.
  • Erina tried existing Resene reds but ended up making her own with the help of the friendly staff at her local Resene ColorShop in Mt Eden.
  • They came up with a perfect match and the colour is now called Emery Red.

DIY stripes

A patterned wallpaper in the toilet provided Erina with the inspiration for the colours she chose for the stripes in the bathroom.

  • This was a cost-effective way of linking the design in the bathroom with the toilet and, luckily for Erina, Resene were able to match the colours in the wallpaper.
  • Resene Alabaster, Royal Heath, Rakaia and Eighth Oilskin worked well, but when it came to applying the paint, Erina called in the Resene recommended painter Darren Cahn. There is no room for error in a job like this!
  • Resene have developed special waterproof and water resistant paints over the years for use in ‘wet’ areas such as bathrooms and laundries.
  • Preparation is the key to getting the best performance from your paint. It might take a bit longer, but taking a short cut will only result in mouldy, peeling paint.

Childrens rooms features
Left: Oliver and Mason play in the dining room, The Superman decal works well against Resene ‘Iron’ walls in Mason’s room, “The childrens’ rooms needed a major overhaul. I was conscious that the surfaces had to be hard wearing and practical (for all those ‘accidents’) and I knew that strong colours were the way to go. ”

Fit for a princess

  • Erina’s inspiration for her daughter Zoe’s room was some bright curtain fabric.
  • Using Resene Alabaster as a base for most of the walls, she then painted the back wall in Resene Illusion, a pretty pink, and matched the blue in the fabric with Resene Bunting.
  • A chair in the corner of the room was also painted Resene Bunting to help tie the whole look together.
  • To finish off the room, Erina added the magical mosquito net from Ikea and pretty matching bed linen that complements the paint colours beautifully.
  • The result is a very special bedroom that Zoe loves spending time in. The perfect room for a little girl and fit for a princess!

Room details
Left: Outdoor funiture is painted Resene ‘Alabaster’, The wallpaper is from Nest; the sitting room walls are Resene ‘Half Concrete’ and the art is by Andrew McLeod;

Room details
The fabric roses are by Ferritferrit, the red Algae wall piece is from Cite, The Superman decal works well against Resene ‘Iron’ walls in Mason’s room.

Winning style

Erina is a fashion designer and adopted a similar approach to decorating her house as she does to compiling garment designs. She spent months collecting ideas and putting them in a scrapbook. It’s the sort of preparation that pays off when you are using a bold colour palette. Erina found inspiration with colourful curtain or blind fabric and matched the colours. She found it was an easier way to get started rather than flicking through piles of paint charts.

Clockwise from top left The wallpaper is from Nest; outdoor funiture is painted Resene Alabaster; the sitting room walls are Resene Half Concrete and the art is by Andrew McLeod; the red Algae wall piece is from Cite; The Superman decal works well against Resene Iron walls in Mason’s room; Oliver and Mason play in the dining room; the spaceman mural in Mason’s room is available at Resene; the fabric roses are by Ferritferrit.

Eriana and Matt fell in love with this classic art deco house in Mt Eden. The exterior was attractive but the inside needed to be more family-friendly.

Outside colour

The classic ivory exterior belies the vibrant colour story within the Emery home. Painting your exterior a neutral colour will make it more appealing when it comes to resale, but you can introduce temporary colour with bright flower planters, as Erina has done with her hot pink petunias.

However, the fountain out front may yet come in for a makeover from our Queen of Colour. Erina admits she’s been back to her local Resene ColorShop to check out exterior paint charts and testpots for ideas.


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Colour Home Awards
View more projects from the finalists and winners of the Resene/Your Home and Garden Colour Home Awards competition.

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