Category Archives: Guide To Painting Your Home

All about the process of color selection, paint quality and finishes plus ideas for color options for trims, doors and ceilings you might not have thought of.

Painting Your Home #1: Color Confusion

Did you find wall color selection so confusing that you defaulted to white?


When it comes to home design, as well as maintenance, it’s a given that a fresh coat of paint does wonders to give a new lease on looks in the most cost effective way possible.

Still we hesitate to repaint our rooms, in spite of the “Every day living soot” that has obscured the original color.

Why? Because we know from experience that even if painters are hired to do the deed for you, painting even just one room can be a life disrupting hassle, bracketed by questions and indecision. What color? What color goes where? Which finish? And even, which paint: Does it pay to splurge on premium brands?

Take heart, clarity is about to be delivered.

All colors are not created equal. If it’s obviously time to repaint, it’s also most likely time to choose a new color scheme. This is where confusion and indecision start to collide. What color, shade or tone will deliver maximum magic?

Don’t think that the color of your favorite shirt is necessarily going to be the answer just because you really like it.

Think Big Picture. It’s important that all of your color choices play well together even if they are in different rooms. Don’t think of a color for just the room(s) to be repainted, think also how your color selection will tie-in with the rest of your home. The goal is to give your rooms a cohesive look as a unified environment.

The impression that your rooms are actually different countries in search of a continent to call their own is not optimum.

Watch Your Tone. Just as inspiration, maybe the color of your favorite shirt will work after all, but remember that while the small scale of a shirt allows for a bright, wild and crazy color, the same color on your eight foot-by-whatever long walls will eventually  give you a headache. However, if the same color is “browned or grayed down” to create its own neutral, or lightened or darkened to taste, you may have found the win/win solution.

Natural Selection: Nature’s colors are perfect. If the Hearth and Home Gods have blessed yours with lots of big windows with views of trees and other greenery, your rooms can become one with the great outdoors by selecting colors that match those found just outside your window. A full-scale color fan deck is invaluable and well worth the investment.  Discover the perfect leaf greens, bark browns and a plethora of shades of stone and of the good earth itself.

Are deep, dark and/or bold colors an idea you have always wanted to try? Go for it, but overload is easy.  Be sure to limit the rest of the color selections to varying tones of that color, maybe one other color for accent and the rest  a good mix of light, medium and dark neutrals in your furnishings for that room. It’s also a good idea to carry that bold wall color on smaller objects like pillows, or picked up in a fabric pattern so that the color choice relates as a whole.

This is by no means a rule but a suggestion that always works: Favor neutrals or at least muted colors for walls and large pieces of upholstered furniture and rugs. Save bright/strong colors for pillows, artwork, towels, pottery etc. If you have patterned drapery or upholstery, or even a patterned rug, you can also pull a color from the design and use a tone of that.

Your color choices reflect your personal style and the impression your rooms will give. Which colors tell your story? Read about the special effects of your favorite colors in the Color Effects Series here.

Related Posts

Painting Your Home #2: Perfect Wall Color

Painting Your Home #3: Which Color Goes Where?

Painting Your Home #4: Quality Paint & The Right Finish

Large Featured Article:  by Daniel R. Blume  Located:


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