How to Choose Paint Colors

With the vast array of paint color choices available, it can be hard to know where to begin. And if you're like many homeowners, you're not only trying to choose the right colors, but colors that coordinate from room-to-room.

Keep reading for tips, tricks and ideas that will help you confidently create a palette for your home.

Find Inspiration at Home

If you're starting with a fully furnished home, think of a favorite rug, piece of art or fabric in your space. Often these objects are your favorites because they feature colors you like. Use these combinations as a guide to choosing shades for your walls.

Determine what features or existing finishes in the room you would consider permanent like cabinets, tile or a brick fireplace. Include them in your color selection process. For example, if the wood of your kitchen cabinets has a red undertone, make sure the paint color you choose works well with that hue.

You can emphasize your home's best architectural features, such as crown molding or arched window treatments, with contrasting paint – lighter or darker than the wall – or by painting them the same color with a glossy finish.

Consider Room Size

The depth of a space can set the tone, but you can use color to keep the feel in line with your vision.

Lighter colors can make a small space feel more open. Dark colors can make surfaces appear closer, giving vast rooms a more intimate feel. Bright, cool whites can make a space feel larger and more open while warmer shades can make a space feel intimate and cozy.

A long narrow room will look wider if you use a slightly darker color on the shorter walls and a lighter color on the longer walls. You can make a ceiling appear higher by applying a lighter color, or lower with a darker color.

Reflect on Light Sources

Remember that the color you choose may look different at various times of the day and night. The warm tones of incandescent lights will have a different influence on the color than the natural light of day. Once you're aware of how different light sources can affect your color choices, you can change your room's "mood" to match the pace of your day.

This is why you should try to pick a color in your space, and avoid picking a paint color at the store. We recommend testing a swatch of paint on your wall and viewing it in different lighting and times of day.

Create Room-to-Room Flow

For an easy way to unify hues from room to room, choose various shades from a common color palette. Check out the latest Colormix Forecast for designer-curated palettes, perfectly coordinated so you can mix and match with confidence.

Try using a neutral as a palette cleanser rooms or hallways adjacent to rooms with bold hues.

Connect spaces throughout your home by using the one neutral color on all trim and doors.

You can also do this with white paint. Most homes have white accents throughout. Find a white paint you love then use is for every time you’re painting something white.

Consult Color Psychology

Color sets the mood in a space. The color choice you make can determine if a room feels cozy enough to curl up with a book or lively enough to carry on exciting dinner conversation.

Think of how the room will be used. Is the setting more social or private? For social areas of you home – dining rooms, kitchens and other living spaces – warm colors in the yellow and red families feel right. In more private settings – bedrooms, bathrooms and home offices – cooler blues, greens and neutrals make sense.

With Color Psychology in mind, our experts have carefully chosen colors and created palettes for each room in your home.

Bring Color to Your World

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Make Your Inspiration a Reality

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