With thousands of paint colors available, choosing the correct ones for your home or office painting project can become intimidating. After all, even the color “white” comes in hundreds of different shades. Relax. These tips can help you narrow your selections. Start with yourself and your family members. What colors do you like? Examine clothing, furnishings, paintings, or favorite possessions. Even your child’s drawings, or favorite food, could indicate a personal preference. As you look around at your world, you may see a color pallet emerging. Check out your friends’ homes or favorite hangouts. Do you find their properties inviting? Are there restaurants or other businesses you enjoy visiting? Notice their color combinations.
If you are drawn to another’s choices, that could provide another hint as to your preferences. Examine the space to be painted. Is it large with lots of natural light? Or small with only artificial light? Larger, more open spaces allow for vivid paint colors while smaller spaces, such as half-baths, benefit from the use of lighter colors. Determine its use and for whom. Does everyone congregate there, like in a kitchen or family room? Or is it a more private space, like a bedroom or a home office? Generally, bold colors work well in more active spaces; softer colors, in more quiet spaces. Look for accents and features.
Are there insects or nooks, unusual angles, crown moldings, chair rails, high ceilings, exposed beams? Unique elements allow for the introduction of complementary colors. Check out magazines, blogs, websites, and talk to any Gold Coast painter. Much as the fashion industry brings its latest styles to the runways, the home and office design world showcases the “hot” trends and “in” colors for various reasons. Learn a little psychology. Research shows color affects the way people feel and interact. For example, yellow is believed to foster cheeriness but, ironically, excessive use of it can create hostility.
The shade and intensity of that yellow may be a factor. For example, a sunny yellow kitchen may encourage activity and engagement while a pale yellow bedroom may promote relaxation. Understand the color’s properties. A color’s brightness can range from dull and flat to bold and intense. A color’s so-called temperature can be “cool” with blue undertones (the red in a hibiscus) compared to “warm” with yellow undertones (the red in a poppy).
Try out some colors. To help ensure you have a color you can enjoy, it’s worth getting a few samples from the paint store and putting them on the different walls of the room. Notice the colors for a few days to see how shifting light affects them. Unify the entire space. After you make your selections, you’ll want to decide on how much of each color you use. Generally, too much of one color proves unsettling, so if you’re painting multiple rooms in your home or office, try giving each room its color. A long hallway might get its color as well. Then, to unify the entire space, have all the doors, trims, and/or ceilings painted in the same color. Finally, finish with yourself and your family. No matter what the psychologists, designers, friends, or neighbors suggest, ultimately your paint selection is your own. Fortunately, the paint is not permanent. So, if you decide to change your mind, you haven’t done anything that can’t be undone. You’ll just need another coat of paint.