Choosing the Right Color
One of the best ways to spruce up your home on a budget is with a new paint job. However, deciding to paint your home is the easiest part of the painting process. While adding some new hues to your home is a great way to transform the look and feel of a room, painting with the wrong color can have the wrong effect on your home's ambiance. The colors you choose and how you incorporate them into each area of your house can be a daunting task. With hundreds of variations to choose from, picking the “right” color may seem almost impossible. But with the right preparation, these tips can help you to choose wisely and paint your home in colors you won’t regret or pay to paint over later.
Tips for Picking Your Hues
Know the Mood of the Colors You Choose
Understanding the emotional tone behind colors can help make your decision easier. As a general rule of thumb: light colors make rooms feel bigger and brighter, while dark colors make spaces seem smaller. But both tones have their place and purpose in a home. For instance, more intense colors are the perfect way to add drama to a wall. Take accent walls for example, usually these are walls painted with a bold, pop of color that brings attention to a specific part of a room. Additionally, consider the warm and cool undertones of the colors. Warm colors are usually considered to create a more comfortable ambiance while cool ones offer a clean, tranquil vibe.
Match the Colors to the Space
Certain rooms look better with certain tones. So, by matching the color to the space, you can create a more cohesive look. For instance, cool colors like blues, greys and greens tend to look better in bathrooms because they complement the connotation of water. Kitchens on the other hand, tend to be painted in warm colors to match the underlying tones of the cabinets and floors.
Let a Neutral Tone Anchor Your Home
Find a dominant neutral shade that can act as a base color to carry through your home. This is another way to ensure a consistent and cohesive look throughout. Painting experts recommend covering 60 percent of your home in the dominant neutral color, 30 percent of your home in secondary colors and 10 percent in accent shades. This is a good recipe for consistency, as most color schemes settle into a range of three to six colors. So remember, when choosing your colors, find your base first and your complementary tones second.
Consider your Furniture, Carpet and Floor
If you’re finding yourself overwhelmed by all the variations of colors to choose from, consider your existing home goods as a starting point. By matching your color choices to complement your existing textiles and tones, you can begin to narrow down which colors will blend and which colors will clash. For instance, cherry red cabinets would pair better with a warm hue than a cool one. Or, if you already have a rug as an accent piece, choose a color that will make the existing accent pop rather than make the room feel busy with competing colors.
Paint a Swath to Test Before You Commit
Before you invest in gallons of paint to finish the job, take your colors for a test run. Rather than base your decision off a tiny paint chip, paint a 3-foot-square swatch on your wall or butcher paper instead. Then, observe it for a few days, seeing how the color looks in the room overall and how it changes based on the amount of light in the room. The point of this exercise is to cover a decent amount of wall space to create a realistic visual of the way your color choices will influence each room of the house. That way you can make sure you absolutely love your new paint job from top to bottom.