Friday, September 21, 2012

Choosing Paint for Interior Walls

Are you contemplating painting a room or two in your home?  Recently, I went through the process of selecting paint for an entire house.  It felt like an overwhelming decision at first, so I thought I'd share some of my experience to help you when faced with making paint decisions.

How to Select Paint Colors for Your Home

The Beach-My Color Inspiration
Step One:  Look to Your Favorite Things for Inspiration
One of the first steps in the paint selection process is to decide on the color pallet you will be working with.  If you have existing furniture that you will be integrating into the room you'll want to use colors from the furniture to guide your selection.  In my case, I was starting with empty rooms, so I looked to some of my favorite things for inspiration.

Step Two:  Find Inspiration Rooms
The next step for me was looking for other rooms that were decorated using the same colors.  One of the first places I look for decorating inspiration these days is  It is a wonderful site to look for all kinds of decorating styles. You are certain to find rooms there that will inspire your own decorating style.

An Example of a Inspiration

Step Three:  Get Tips from Experts
Next, you'll want to get tips from experts on selecting paint.  YouTube and various paint sites have videos you may find helpful.  Now you are ready for your trip to the paint store.  Select a variety of paint chips you think will fit your color pallet.  Bring them home to assess in the natural light of your home.  Cut the paint chips apart and discard the ones you have eliminated.  They will only confuse you if you keep them.  Stick the chips on the wall in the room.

Evaluating Paint Colors
Step Five:  Take Your Time
Don't rush to judgment.  In the picture above I was trying to decide between light and dark colors.  I hadn't decided which I preferred.  Hopefully, you'll be able to narrow your choices down so that you can afford to get sample sizes of the paint to bring home and try out on the wall.  Light changes throughout the day will affect how the paint color looks on your walls. Be sure you look at your colors in the morning, mid-day and evening light.

So, what colors did I select?  This is the paint selection I thought would best represent the beach colors I was striving for in my home.

My Paint Colors-Behr Paints
The entry, kitchen, living room, dining room and bathrooms are all painted in Tuscan Beige.  It is a light stone color that reminds me of beach sand.  Yacht Harbor is used as an accent color on one small wall that is visible from the dining room, kitchen and living room.  This Yacht Harbor blue makes me think of the ocean on a bright and sunny day.  Two of the bedrooms are painted in Silver Charm, a blue-gray that reminds me of the sky.  The final bedroom is painted in Provence Creme because it makes me think of sunshine.

My rooms have been painted for a little over a week and the colors seem right.  Now it is time for the rest of the decorating to begin.  Before I sign off from this post I'd like to leave you with some tips I learned from this painting project that will hopefully help you in your next painting project.

  • Take your time.  Don't rush the paint selection or the paint application.  You'll be happier with the result.
  • Make your decision about your paint color at home.  There is too much distraction at the paint store and the light is all wrong.
  • Apply a sample of the paint to your wall, but if you don't and the color isn't right, just start over.  You don't want to hate the color.  I had to do this in the Provence Creme bedroom.  The first yellow paint I chose was just too yellow for my liking.
  • Start with a light color.  Paint dries darker than it is when first applied.  Dark colors will be darker.  When in doubt start with a lighter color.

Happy painting!


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