Great advice there. I definitely don't want any "eww" coloring.
In a larger piece like a table or a headboard, the changing color would look very nice but in the thinner strips for the frame, it will look out of place.
I think I'll show her some dyed (thanks for that hint too)scraps where there is a sharp band of contrasting colors and let her decide. I have some old Wood Essence, Bordeaux colored dye from a corner table this spring. (Don't laugh, it's what they wanted.) It's close to the color she wants and will let her see the effect.
Yes, life would be simpler if we didn't let the customer/friend decide what they wanted. It would be great if I had as much knowledge as you then I could at least try to lean them in the right direction before I'm half way into it, but I'm just a newb who says yes to anything because I really enjoy building stuff.
She is certainly not uncute, but technically it is for her daughter who is also not uncute but is underage.
I'm Riffing. People usually stop me when I'm riffing. Or carry on without me. That's also an option.