Tips for Choosing Paint Colors

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eHow Home Blog

Color is an essential element of any home design. Yet selecting paint colors can be overwhelming because there are so many colors to choose from and color trends change frequently. To quickly narrow down your color choices, why not focus on colors that make you look good?

If you’re not sure which colors are flattering on you, have a color analysis done by an image or color consultant. Your signature colors will either be warm (i.e. yellow-based) or cool (i.e. blue-based).

Once you know which colors look great on you, you can then play with the varying shades to create a color palette, a combination of colors that work well together.

With your colors figured out, download one of the many paint selection and visualization apps, like the ColorSmart by BEHR® mobile app. You’ll then be able to auto-coordinate colors using these tools as well as “virtually” paint a room so you can see how different colors look.

Once you have a few color palettes in mind, learn which ones look best in your home by experimenting. Don’t just buy a few gallons of paint and hope the colors are right. Test several colors in the area of the room you’ll be painting. Live with your choices for a few days to see how you like them.

The great news is that you no longer have to buy several quarts of paint to test paint colors since many paint companies offer sample-sizes.

Tip: Paint each color on its own 24″x 24″ foam board. That way you can move the large paint swatches you’ve created without having to paint another area. You can even move them next to your furniture.

Need to match a piece of fabric, carpeting, or wallpaper? No problem. You can have paint custom mixed to match just about any color at many paint stores. For best results, your sample must be a flat item that is of uniform color and is at least 1/2 inch square.

Still need a confidence boost when picking paint colors? Have no fear. Get your hands on a copy of the “Color Harmony Workbook: A Workbook and Guide to Creative Color Combinations” by Lesa Sawahata.

This practical, visual guide matches colors to specific moods, to help you select the best color combination. Large, tear-out swatches of each color combination let you mix, match, and test different hues.

Imagine having 1400 color palettes already figured out and at your fingertips!  It doesn’t get any better than that.

Photo credit: Getty Images

Infographic credit: Tiffany Hales

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