Painless Paint Picking

Updated: Sep 26, 2018

Paint. It's not always easy to take the plunge


Choosing the right paint color can be a daunting task for anyone and there are many experts to give you tips like here and here. There are many great resources and I suggest you do lots of research before painting but here are a few of my own guidelines on how to tackle paint. These tips can be for staging or for redesigning your current home. Fortunately, paint is not permanent so if you do make a mistake it can be corrected. However, it’s still an expense and you want to invest in your paint color wisely. You’ll want paint to be the last thing you tackle after you’ve made other big decisions on flooring, furniture and counter tops. Since color options are endless, it’s much easier to match paint to your furnishings then to match the color of fabric or furniture to an existing paint color.


Trends come and go, so I tend to stay with more classic hues especially in staging. Light, neutral colors will allow most people to imagine themselves in the home you’re selling. What I call “almost whites” are whites with undertones of grey, beige or blue and they work well in large, open rooms and living spaces that flow from one area to the next. It’s like having a blank canvas where buyers can imagine themselves and their own belongings. A fresh coat of paint makes the space “move-in ready” - a detail most buyers are looking for in their potential purchase.


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I also love the idea of going bold with paint, but my preference is to go bold in small spaces. With the right lighting and accents you don’t have to worry about a darker color making the room seem smaller. In fact, it can add something unexpected, whimsical or dramatic. I’ve personally used dark or bright colors in small bathrooms. By combining the dark wall color with light colored floors, cabinets and accessories along with plenty of lighting the space comes together nicely.


Depending on the size of the project and the investment, work with many color swatches and/or samples. For an accent wall in my home, I had about 10 swatches of black paint. I worked by process of elimination until I got down to the one I wanted. I bought the smallest can of paint and went for it. I knew that if I just hated it that I could change it rather easily since it was such a small project. However, when I was choosing an “almost white” for my own living, kitchen and hallway I had at least 4 color samples painted on different areas of the room to see how it looked under different lighting conditions.

Remember, take your time on picking a paint color, work with a process of elimination and use plenty of samples.



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