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Store Front Colour

March 23, 2012 by admin

Well I haven’t started painting it yet, but I’d say my store front could use some fresh colour couldn’t you?


Well the trick will be to choose something that’s classic but eye-catching, fresh but not too bright and definitely signature Michael Penney, right?  I’ve thought of plain white (fresh, clean, simple) but think it will just wash out.  Maybe if there was nice rich brick above, but alas there is not.  I’ve thought of all black (classic, traditional, refined, dressy) but think, been there, done that.  You know me, I love colour and so I think it’s gotta be something a little more innovative than black or white!  And for colour, I often look to the historical yet impact-full shades from Farrow & Ball.  I’m thinking of going with one of my all time favourites – Arsenic!


It’s that great combo of something historical and yet oh so charming on a store front (and definitely eye grabbing, don’t you think?).  Like Purl Soho in New York (although my arsenic will be a little less minty).

For me, this is pure charm and I’m willing to take the risk.  No guts, no glory!  Here’s Arsenic from in some other great applications, just to make you love it more!








Well, what do you think?  Am I nuts?  


Happy Weekend everyone!





  1. Laurel says:

    Michael, So happy for you that your dream is coming true! Love this colour choice. My bedroom is painted in a shade pretty close to it, and I love waking up to it.

  2. Stacey says:

    It’s perfect! Fresh, invigorating and classic all at the same time.
    Can’t wait to visit the store.

  3. Nancy gaylord says:

    Love it , It looks beautiful in the picture of the building with the many windows. The white trim is a perfect compliment to it. It does seem to be a color I associate with you. That hall table with the white walls in your hall is you. Do plan to visit your store this summer. Nancy

  4. Janice says:

    I happen to love this colour. I can’t wait to see it when you have completed it–it is going to pop!

  5. cheryl says:

    It’s wonderful..reminds me of some little town in England.. Perhaps White lettering & an Awning???

  6. ARSENIC IS PERFECT!!! I used arsenic in a powder room and loved it but while others loved the ‘vintage’ look of what I did in there, some questioned my colour choice. I love the F&B names and loved to watch the face of the person who said they loved the colour of my guest bedroom and asked what it was. “Mouses Back.” I would reply…

    Go for Arsenic!!

  7. Michael, what are you naming her? Referring to the store of course..

  8. Rachel says:

    Gorgeous! Absolutely, I say go for it! It will be very eye-catching from the street.

  9. Suzanne Bates says:

    The colour is gorgeous!! I love it and think it will look so fresh and current on your store but also a little retro-trendy since it has been a popular colour for many years in its many different incantations. I say go for it!

  10. Mike says:

    I had a feeling you would go for something in the green family- great choice! F&B’s heritage colours are wonderful & evocative of another time.(Just like that gorgeous palace- a Romanov one in St Petersburg,perhaps)
    Whitby will be very fortunate to have you as a purveyor of fine things. Maybe Tommy can attend the grand opening seeing his family connection & all . Regardless,I’m sure there will be a crush of punters.

    • Kelly says:

      okay, stupid question: i’ve read the term punter in english mystery novels and never quite understood the word? i guess it’s like ”player” but not sure?
      BTW, i also cast a vote in favour of Arsenic.

      • Mike says:

        Not a stupid question at all. Punter is a customer or patron of a pub or like establishment. I think it’s fair to call Michael’s potential customers “punters” since it really is like booze for design junkies. Style, it’s an addiction!

  11. Carol Ann says:

    Perfect, just perfect…. nothing more to say!

  12. Even though Arsenic is a great color, I gonna say…black with gold lettering and brass hardware….the first impression will be chic!

  13. You are definitely not nuts!! The arsenic is a stunning colour choice – subtle and yet bold, bright and yet pleasant. I think it’s perfection.

  14. Patricia says:

    I just passed by your store! I’m so happy for you and wish you good luck!

  15. Sabrina says:

    Love the color! Martha would be pleased.

  16. naomi says:

    Love Arsenic.

  17. Jane says:

    The Perfect colour! Your store front will be amazing in this colour.Very exciting.

  18. Georgina says:

    What a beautiful colour

  19. Jennifer says:

    Do it.

  20. marzz says:

    Pretty. Google images of the “mylk uncookies” cafe on Gerrard in Toronto–Tiffany blue with white. Very fresh. Reminds me of Purl in SohoNYC.

    Looking forward to your store!

  21. Arlene says:

    Can’t wait to see your new store. Didn’t know the history and I live within walking distance. I think the arsenic will stand out amongst all the other store fronts on that street. Will drive by tomorrow late afternoon with my sister Vanessa@decorhappy who will be visiting. Love if your happen to be there to see it!!!!

  22. Beatrice Lawson says:

    Love the color! I agree that black with gold is a classic but really.. Been done to death. Keeping white clean would require re-painting all the time, so it’s great that you are going with a memorable color. I just wish the store would be closer to me! Congrats, Michael and will definitely make the trek for the opening! By the way, when are you planning to open? And please do have a selling website for the clients living further awa!

  23. Thanks for your comments everyone! Sounds like Arsenic is a popular choice! I’ll be painting soon so let’s hope I keep my nerve. And for all of you who live near by, be sure to stop in and say hello!


  24. Love your leaning… but offer a suggestion. Do a bit of research (google) Charlenston, SC Haint Blue. Lovely old legends … and a nice photo here:

  25. Sharon says:

    Hi Michael, just drove by your new storefront and almost had an accident …so excited to a new uplifting decorating store in downtown Whitby! I know I will be stopping by! When do you plan to open? Best wishes! Sharon

  26. so excited about the new store and I love that farrow and ball paper!! will you do using it indoor as well? maybe you classic and impactful application of wallpaper on the back of the hutch?

    Can’t wait to visit the store and see all your treasures!

    Great seeing you at DFO the other day … you’ve got a great pile of fabrics!

  27. You’re genius Michael! It’s going to look smashing.

  28. Kim says:

    It’s going to be beautiful!! Can’t wait to see it up and running! Store watch shoot?? K : )

  29. Not nuts … genius. Love it!

  30. Lisa says:

    Found this blog as I am thinking of painting my shop Arsenic and googled ‘shop fronts Arsenic’ Did you do it? Does it look amazing? I don’t know if I dare!

  31. this is the color of the peace……….in the sky and in the sea!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  34. Georgeanne Ingram says:

    Well most artists are ‘nuts’ and I am no exception. But I love your site here and the color!!!!!!!!!!

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