I get lots of emails asking about the colors of my walls and trim at StoneGable. Even though I found my perfect paint color I did not always make the best color choices! I used to almost get sick in the pit of my stomach when it came to making a paint color decision! It seemed so daunting! What if I painted a room and did all that work and didn’t like it? Believe me, that happened more than I like to admit. Then I’d repaint the room… and sometimes repaint it again! But I’ve been learning a lot over the years about finding the perfect paint color. Now I’m not nearly as fearful and I can say I almost enjoy the process of finding a perfect paint color! Here are 6 tips that helped me and I hope they will help you too!
1. FIND INSPIRATION
Even though most people find it hard to pick a paint color, it helps to have a little inspiration! What colors do you love to live with? What are the predominant colors in your wardrobe? Is there a painting you love or are you drawn to certain pictures in a magazine or blog? Look for things that have colors that you find pleasing to and start there!
The inspiration for the walls in most of my downstairs came from the Daniel Kessler painting above. It’s called Paris On The Seine. I was so infatuated with the way the neutral colors worked so beautifully together!
I’m certainly in my “neutral” decor phase now. I love whites, but I knew that white walls would drive me a little crazy. I was drawn to what a call “barely flax”. A soft beige/white.
Benjamin Moore SONNET was the perfect color for most of our downstairs. It’s light and soft and a wonderful backdrop for my decor!
2. HOLD UP PAINT CHIPS NEXT TO SOMETHING WHITE
Not all paint colors are created equal… actually none are. If you are choosing a color, lets say blue, it may have a green tint to it or a red or even a yellow or gray. And the undertone color may be very hard to see…. until you get home and paint your walls.
Our home’s woodwork and cabinets and wainscoting and vertical planking are all painted Benjamin Moore Atrium White. It has the slightest pink tint to it making is soft and gentle and a tad warm. How do I know what direction a paint is tinted? I hold a paint chip up to a white piece of paper and really look at the color. Often times you can see the undertone tint. Knowing that will be such a big help in choosing the right paint color!
You will be amazed at the undertones you can pick up if you compare it to something that is white!
3. SAMPLE PAINT COLORS
Sample lot of paint colors on your walls! And test them on many places on your walls too! Paint is so effected by light. You need to see a nice size swatch of color to get a real idea of what will work in your room!
I brought home big paper samples and taped them to the wall. Then I chose my 3 favorites colors and bought inexpensive samples and painted them on my walls. After living with a multicolored wall for a several days I knew that Sonnet was the one I loved! It’s worth the effort to get it right!
4. LIGHTING EFFECTS PAINT COLOR
Lighting likes to play with wall color! Depending on the type of light in your room, your wall color can look very different than the color you thought you chose!
Sunlight will show the purest color. BUT depending on the direction of the sun coming in your windows and the time of day even sunlight can skew the color! Incandescent light throws a yellow light that will intensify warm colors and dull cool ones.
Halogen light is white light and mimics sunlight and it’s effects. Florescent light is a blue light. It intensifies cool colors and mutes warm ones. Soft white light can dull colors while full spectrum light will intensify them!
All this to say… make sure you look at the paint samples painted on your wall at different times of a day and using different artificial light.
Our downstairs powder room is also painted with Benjamin Moore Atrium White and Sonnet. The colors looks so much different in a room with no windows and a pendent light.
5. BUY MORE PAINT THAN YOU THINK YOU NEED
If you buy a custom color to paint your walls, make sure to buy more than enough! A custom color is hand tinted and even thought different cans of it may look the same, it can be subtly different. It would be such a shame to paint a room to find out that the color varies in the room. YIKES!
I recently painted the guest room above with Sherwin William’s Silver Mist. It’s a blue color with a gray tone. I have enough paint left over for touch ups. Do you walls get dinked as much as mine?
Speaking of touch ups, here is the BEST touch up gadget! I’ve been using MY PAINT SAINT for a few months and I highly recommend it!!!! It’s a container to store touch up paint in that has a great built in brush and more!!!! To read more information about MY PAINT SAINT or to get one, click HERE.
6. TAME YOUR FEARS!
If choosing a paint color terrifies you… I UNDERSTAND!!! It’s the hardest thing I do when it comes to decorating! But, now that I have a few great tips under my belt I’m getting much better!!!
The guest room above is painted in Benjamin Moore Simple White. I warmed up the white walls with lots of gold, siena, and brown decor.
Don’t let a little paint psyche you out!!! I say… just go for it! Use these 6 tips and you can conquer your paint fears AND choose the perfect wall color!!!!
If you like this post you might like to see 6 MUST HAVE THINGS TO HELP YOU PAINT A ROOM LIKE A PRO!
Remember to pin this to your Pinterest PAINTING or HOME DECOR boards. You can follow me on Pinterest and see all the great things I’m finding to pin HERE.
I received 3 My Paint Saints to try for this post. There is a possibility that I could gain financially from MPS. I love MPS and the opinions are 100% mine.