thing i have learned the hard way #4:
use samples when painting.
i have picked out my fair share of paint colors
over the years,and while i feel that i
have learned a lot of tips about selecting
paint that make it much easier,
it is still one of those "tricky" things
that sometimes still manages to
cause me frustration.
here are a few tips to help you choose that
perfect paint color:
1. try to select a color that, on the
paint swatch, looks a little...
generally, paint colors go on the
wall a little bit lighter and brighter
than they look on a sample.
anyone who has ever tried painting a room
green or yellow KNOWS what i am talking about.
in particular, these two colors seem to be
a little more tricky to select than others.
in fact, just last week, i was at my friends house
for book club. she had just completed a
kitchen remodel, and while the kitchen looks
fabulous, she was really unhappy with the paint
color she chose.
she was going for "soft sage"
and ended up with "lime sherbet".
i told her the same advice i listed above:
go a little more "drab/dull/boring" than
the color you are envisioning.
2. narrow your selection down to 2 or 3 colors,
and get samples.
painting a room is an investment...
when thinking about a budget for painting a room,
be sure to add $10-30 for samples.
if possible, take the paint swatches into
several different rooms in your home,
and make sure to look at them in
(natural light is always the best, though)
when selecting these samples,
try to get some diversity.
for instance, if you are looking to
paint your room a soft soothing blue,
pick the color that you THINK you are going
to love, and then pick one that has just
a hint more green in it.
do the same with any color...
looking for a nice, neutral gray?
pick a grey, and then pick one that
is just a little more "warm" than what
you think you want. it is surprising
how different paint looks on the wall
than it does on that teeny, tiny sample.
another really useful tool when narrowing down your
selection is to GOOGLE images of the paint
colors you are considering. chances are, that someone
has painted a room in their home that color
and uploaded them to a flickr stream or a blog.
it's a great way to get a sneak peek at what
the paint looks like when painted on the
walls if an entire room.
3. paint the samples on the wall in at
least a 20" square, and make sure to get
at least two coats.
if possible, paint the sample on a
sheet of poster board or a scrap of drywall-
especially if painting a wall that already has a color on it.
the existing color can really skew your samples and make
them appear more pink or green or bright
than they will appear when the entire room is painted.
also, be sure to paint the samples on at least two walls.
lighting can dramatically effect the color of a
wall, and it is really important to see
the colors on different surfaces/planes.
4. when selecting your final color,
be sure to give yourself enough time to see the
color at daytime and at night.
the light in a room changes A LOT
throughout the course of the day.
that pretty, soft yellow that looks fabulous
at night may look you are standing
inside a glass of country-time lemonade
during the day.
and that classy, soothing
blue that looks gorgeous in the morning
may look smurferrifically awful in the middle of the day.