Whether you’re moving in to a new home, or you’ve spent the weekend staring at lackluster walls, there is something to be said for the way paint can transform a home. But where should you even start? Should your ceiling match your wall color? Should you keep all bathroom colors the same? What’s the ruling on accent walls these days?
You’re in luck because we’re here to answer all of these questions and more. Let us help you pick paint colors for your home that are beautiful, calming and a reflection of your personal style.
Take Inventory of Your Rooms
To begin, first make a list of all of the rooms in your home. Does the paint color in your dining room spark joy? Is your teenager’s room the same paint color as their nursery? Take inventory of the rooms in your home that you want to repaint, so you can fully assess your needs and next steps.
Using Google Docs, excel or some other list making system, list each room in their own line, the paint color that it is currently, and either the name of the paint color you want or even links to paint inspiration (example below).
Even if you can’t quite nail down the exact color you are looking for, jot down notes for how you want to feel in that specific room. Do you need to feel inspired or creative in your office? Jot down those notes to guide you along in your paint color selection.
From there, start small. Rather than tackle each and every room in your home at once, choose a smaller room to start with (your wallet will thank you, too!).
Think About How You Want to Feel
Color psychology is a real thing and it’s not just marketers or artists who need to keep it in mind. When you’re choosing paint colors for your home, consider how you want to feel in each room. If you want your living room to feel cozy, your paint colors should reflect that as well. If you love a crisp, clean kitchen, choose paint colors that mirror that aesthetic.
Here’s a quick review of the color psychology behind a few paint colors:
Red: Red is the color of romance and passion, which means it can quickly stimulate the senses. Depending on the shade, red can feel contemporary, traditional, rustic or timeless. When used with other cool colors, red can warm up and brighten a space. When used as a main color, red can add drama (perfect for a powder room!).
Pink: Not just a girly-girl’s color, certain pink tones can create energy and glamour for a room. Brighter pink shades like fuschia can create drama and a sense of creativity, while softer pink tones like blush can be soothing. Choose pinks for entryways to instantly make guests feel energized by entering your home.
Orange: Orange immediately makes us think of the type of brightness we find in citrus. Whether it’s a deep apricot or terra cotta color, a peach-toned orange or a bright pumpkin tone, orange can easily take a lead role in your home. Because it’s such a bright, energetic and noticeable color, you’ll need minimal design and decor to tie up the space. So consider adding orange to your mudroom or TV room where decor pieces are less needed.
Yellow: Yellow is instant sunshine and optimism. If you think your space can’t possibly withstand a bright yellow wall, think again. There are so many shades and tones of yellow that could fit any decor or aesthetic preference. A sun-kissed yellow will brighten up a sunroom. A pale yellow can enlarge a smaller room. A buttery yellow can cozy-up a bathroom.
Green: Green represents growth and renewal. Think of a lush lawn, deep forests and vibrant plants when you’re choosing green tones for your home. Use green tones to add a richness to any home (we especially love it in the living room!).
Blue: Similar to green, blue tones can add incredible richness to a room. But, used in a lighter, softer tone, blue can create a feeling of calm and freshness. The versatility of the color can give homeowners the freedom to use it at varying shades throughout the entire house.
Gray: Gray has had its moment in interior design and paint color selection, and it’s a trend that’s around to stay. Gray gives the same versatility and clean slate that a crisp white does, but is much more forgiving when pairing paint with decor. Use gray to create a cool elegance and sophistication, as well as a blank canvas for brighter design elements.
Don’t Forget Lighting
Once you’ve settled on a particular color, or even a family of colors, consider the lighting of room your evaluating. This not only includes the light fixtures that are present, but the way that natural light shines into the room at different times of the day.
Light, even the source of light, causes colors to appear differently to the eye. As a general rule of thumb:
- Natural light shows the truest color
- Incandescent lighting brings out warm tones and yellows
- Fluorescent lighting casts a sharp blue tone
To test how your chosen color performs under different lighting, either get swatch cards from your paint supplier or get a sample of your preferred paint. Either adhere the swatch on your wall or paint a small section of your wall with the new paint and notice how your light fixtures and the natural light throughout the day affects the color.
Choose Complementary Colors
With the general paint color established, you can move on to choosing complementary or accent colors for either your trim, accent wall or decor items. A color wheel will be a great asset in choosing which colors blend well together.
Ask the Experts
If you’re getting stuck choosing the right paint colors for your home, we’re always here to help. Stop in to see us or request a design consultation with one of our interior designers.