Choosing paint for your home is now easier than ever. Most people shy away from using color on their walls fearing that they will go to all that work only to find they don’t like the color. But actually color in the form of paint is one of the least expensive decor treatments to try out. To make this process less painful and more successful I have compiled a list of tricks I use when deciding to add color to my walls. I hope they help you to find your courage and give color a chance – you will be amazed at how much energy color can add to your home environment.
- Head to your local paint or hardware store and bring with you an item from the room you are going to add color to. This will help you color “match” or coordinate with what you have at home. If you are just starting out then simply collect all the color swatches that appeal to you in the store. Once you are home, lay them out in the room you are painting and try to narrow it down to no more than 5 choices.
- The home improvement stores now carry small sample cans of paint that you can purchase to try out a color on your wall. This can be a great way to check out a color before you invest all the time and money in doing the whole room.
- If you don’t want to pay for the sample can of paint you can try this trick I have used for years. Gather a half dozen paint chips all in the same shade you are thinking of. At home cut and tape them together to form a large square of the same color at least 6″ or larger. Then tape the color on your wall in the room and leave it for a day or two. Move it around to see if you like it on the whole wall or on additional walls.
- Take a paint chip of the shade you like shopping with you. Head to the fabric store and see if you can find an inexpensive piece of fabric that matches. When you get home place it on the wall for a better feel of how this color will enhance your room (or not) If you like the color you now have a piece of fabric to use for a pillow cover or throw. If you don’t like it then donate it to your local Goodwill.
- I have also done this with towels which work especially well when you are painting a bathroom. It helps to go with a color that you can find coordinating linens for as well.
- Turning on lights in the room at night will also give you an idea of how this sample color will change. All light bulbs have color and will alter your wall color when lit. Standard incandescent bulbs shine yellow, florescent bulbs shine blue. Most stores use florescent bulbs and most homes use incandescent and this is why it is extremely important to bring samples home and see them in the lighting you use there.
- You will also want to try out the color on more than one wall because the same can of paint will “change” colors depending on which wall it is on. No, the paint is not fickle; it’s due to the lighting changes in the room. For instance the window wall will be one shade of the color you choose and the opposite wall which gets all the light from the window will be a lighter shade.
- If you paint all four walls of your room the same shade, this will intensive the value of the color in the area overall. So a good rule of thumb is to pick your color and then go two shades lighter if you intend to paint all four walls, otherwise it might end up being more intense than you had hoped for.
- If you are not sure you love the color once you are done, just leave it up for a few days without putting the room back in order. This way if you want to make a change the room won’t have to be prepped for painting again.
Good luck and happy painting!
’till next time,
Your Personal Space Coach©