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5 Tips For Choosing The Right Paint Color For Your Home

Chro-mo-pho-bia:  An abnormal fear of colors.

Hey, ya’ll!  I have a secret to share, well, not really…everyone probably already knows, but here goes: we offer many design services at Unique Painting, but color consultations are my favorite.  News flash, right?  I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned this about a million times.  I love the dramatic transformation that can take place with just the change of a color.  Walls can go from crazy to calm, dramatic to fun, formal and stuffy to a great time was had by all, this evening. Color is truly a tool that can be utilized to update a room in a jiffy.  So, why is choosing a color to paint your latest room redo such a scary thing?  It isn’t for me, but might be for you, and you’re not alone.  There’s a whole sea of Chromophobes out there that need help navigating through the foreign land that is the color swatch area at their local paint store.  That’s where I come in.  I’m the tour guide of said foreign land.  Today, I’ll give you 5 tips on how to choose a great color for your project.

Tip #1:  Pick the stuff first, then the paint color.

What do I mean by “stuff”, you’re probably asking?  By “stuff” I mean, bedding if it’s a bedroom, a couch if it’s the living room, yadda, yadda…  Why?  Well, in my experience, it’s much easier to match paint to your stuff than stuff to your paint.  There are so many paint colors out there, but there may be only one navy, turquoise, and orange chair in this big world.  Buy the stuff first.

Tip #2:  Decide where your color inspiration lies.

Now you have the stuff, time to choose a palette.  I generally use the items with the largest pattern or most color to inspire my selections.  For example: a large rug that has a wide range of colors, could offer some great options for a palette.  There are so many types of palettes you can create, in fact, I’ve decided this will be the topic of my next entry.  Deciding where your color inspiration lies is an important step.  During this time, you should pay some attention to what you’d like to stand out.  Is your décor extremely neutral?  If so, you can focus more attention on your wall colors.  Is your couch brightly patterned?  If so, you may want to go with neutral wall colors.

Tip #3:  How do you want the room to feel?

Would you like your kitchen to feel open and airy or rich and warm?  How about the bedroom?  Do you want to feel energized or completely relaxed when you hang out there?  Each room has an unspoken energy, a feeling you get when you enter.  That feeling can either be played up, or totally changed with a fresh paint color.  It’s quite important to give some thought to how you want each room to feel and plan your colors accordingly.

Tip #4: Consider the things you can’t change

What color are your cabinets?  Trim?  Ceilings? Tile?  Flooring?  If it is not in your budget to replace these items you will need to consider them when choosing paint colors for your walls.  Do these items have warm or cool undertones?  The answer to this question will surely influence your color choice.

Tip #5:  Buy a sample

Once you’ve made a decision on a palette, it’s time to put a little paint on the walls.  Most paint stores sell inexpensive tester cans now that make this task easy.  You will want to paint different (2ft x 2ft) areas of your walls, or a better option would be to paint a sample poster board as it can be difficult to cover sample areas on your walls.  You’ll need to look at those painted areas many times throughout the day.   As the sun rises and sets, the paint color will appear different in each of those phases.   You may despise the green tone your gray wall color takes on in the late afternoon, which will push you toward a different color.  Buying a sample will not only ease your mind, but it may save you money on gallons of paint in the long run.

There are exceptions to every rule, of course, but these are the five criteria I stick to when helping clients and choosing my own paint colors. For those who are scared as a long-tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs about choosing paint colors, you should know, it’s just paint.  Paint is not permanent, that’s the beauty of it, really.  I challenge you to give these 5 tips a chance.  Don’t let the fear of what could happen make nothing happen.  Don’t give in to your inner chromophobe.  You got this!!

Thanks for cruising by and reading my blog today.  As I mentioned before, the topic for my next entry is going to play off of this one: A palette for your entire home, how to put one together.  Color theory is one of my favorite things to talk about so this will be a fun one to write and hopefully, for you all, to read.

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Sara Ward
June 7, 2017

Our house looks amazing, thanks to Chad and his crew. They were swift and thorough.