The new Farrow & Ball colors for 2011 have been officially announced and they are very interesting — there is a certain intensity to the colors that makes even the "quiet" ones feel bold. They are oh-so-good at showing off how to use them to excellent effect and their technique for dealing with architectural detail is one for the inspiration file...
The photos above show off the technique, which is to add a sharp edged band of color at the top of the walls, which often even continues onto the ceiling. As you can see in the Farrow & Ball examples, this "molding" doesn't rely on any actual molding being in place, but even when there IS decorative molding, it is NOT automatically used as the dividing line for color. They move the edge off of any molding (sometimes just a little, sometimes quite alot) making for a fresh modern take on how to work with paint and color.
Aside from allowing you to mix things up a bit by adding in another color to your room's palette, it adds tons of interest and intentionality to your decor - the statement is that this is not a basic paint job and creates the general impression of a room where modern architectural detail exists, whether it does or not.
While it ups the DIY ante a bit by requiring the careful measuring, taping off and patience that creating a line between two painted colors takes, but I think it's one worth considering if you are looking to modernize your molding.
For more on the new 2011 colors and lots of inspiration photos: Farrow & Ball
• A Fresh Coat of Paint: Farrow and Ball 2011 Colors