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Colarelli Custom Homes

Colarelli Custom Homes

Before You Paint: 10 Tips for Choosing the Perfect Colors

Painting the walls in your new home can be stressful and nerve-racking.  When you choose a paint color, you must consider the effects that it will have on the room.  Depending on your choices, you can dramatically change the brightness, flow, and mood of the room you paint.  So how do you make a good selection?  Continue reading for 10 guidelines to follow when selecting the perfect paint colors for your home.

1. Baby Steps

For those who aren’t quite sure what colors to use, experimenting in a small bathroom or hallway is a great place to start.  If you will be doing the painting yourself, select an easy area that will be done quickly.  This gets you the fastest results, so that you can decide to throw on another coat or change to a different color.  Painting your home is an exciting process, so enjoy the adventure and keep painting!

If you are having trouble selecting a color to use for your first area, find a piece of art or clothing that you find visually appealing, and select colors from there.

2. Create The Mood You Want

The color or colors you choose will affect the mood of the room, regardless of any furniture or wall decorations present.  When painting any room in your home, it is important to keep the desired mood in mind.  A poor color choice can absolutely ruin the mood of the room, so be prepared to pivot to a different color if your vision for the room changes at any point in the process.

Painting is all about adding a personal touch to your home.  You are in complete control when it comes to the moods you create.  A bedroom can be restful and calming or dramatically intimate; a dining room can feel invigorating and sociable or neat and formal.  Warm, contrasting, and bright colors contribute to feelings of excitement and conversation, while deeper, cooler colors and neutral colors feel very formal.

3. Learn From Your Lighting

Your paint shop should have light boxes that you can use to test potential colors under different types of natural and artificial light.  When comparing colors, remember:

• Natural daylight will show you the truest color of your paint

• Fluorescent lighting adds an element of blue to your paint color

• Incandescent lighting will enhance the warm colors and yellows in your paint

• If you are worried about a strong color overpowering your room, consider using that color as an accent wall.

4. Know Your Color Terms

Understanding the terms used to describe paint colors will help you along your journey to create a colorful home.  The basic terms you need to know are Hue, Value, Saturation, and Intensity.

Hue: The color of the paint.  For example, the hue of red paint would be red; the hue of yellow paint is yellow.

Value: This describes how light or dark the paint is.

Saturation: This is the level of dominance of the hue in the color.  When comparing red to pink, the red hue is more dominant in the red paint than the pink paint.

Intensity: Intensity is described as the brilliance of the color.  Pure colors (Red, Blue, Yellow) are more intense than mixed colors like yellow-green.  Stronger colors generally have a more dominant hue.

5. Test Your Choices

If you aren’t confident enough to begin painting your walls straightaway, begin by painting large poster boards.  This will give you a life-sized sample of your paint that you can use to test the flow of the color with your furniture.  Experiment with dramatic colors and other colors that reach outside of your comfort zone.

6. Use Decorative Finishes For Added Depth

If a standard paint job alone isn’t enough to bring life to your space, consider adding different textures or spaces of broken color.  Looking to add even more drama to your walls?  Using a burnished mineral or metal finish will easily add depth and excitement, or you could opt for layered glazes of color to make your walls pop.

7. Paint, Walk, Repeat.

When painting your home, it is helpful to consider your walls as interconnected planes of color.  Think about the walls that will peek through into each room.  How do those colors look together?  Remember that in most rooms of your house, you will see pieces of other rooms.  Choosing the right colors from room to room will create a sense of flow and unity across your home.  Continually walking around your home throughout the painting process will help you pick the right colors for your home as you are painting.

8. Get A Color Wheel, And Use It

Find a small color wheel to keep with you during the painting process.  This tool shows you how all the colors interact.  They can be helpful for comparing potential colors to your furniture and wall decorations.  Plus, the color wheel is perfectly divided down the middle (between yellow-green and red-violet) into warm and cool colors.

9. Play With Monochromatic Palettes

If you would like to create an exciting visual impact without choosing wild colors, consider creating small variations within a color group.  You will be amazed at the striking effects closely related colors provide.  This is the best option to choose if your furniture or wall art provides a substantial pop of color already.

10. Choose Various Paint Finishes

Using the same color on your walls and trim does not have to look boring.  For example, you can use a matte finish on your walls and a thin, satin finish on your trim.  Since the colors are of the same hue, they will look great together.  This is a great option for those who are looking for an exciting, cohesive look.

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