Choosing Paint: Decorating with Color in Mind

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Choosing Paint: Decorating with Color in Mind

Staff Writer · Jan 26, 2011

Paint decorating involves selecting colors that will work well with the dimensions of a room, its lighting and the type of mood you want to convey. Use paint colors then to establish the perfect atmosphere, whether it be warm and inviting or more soothing and cooling.

Choosing from Paint Samples

If you’re looking at paint chips in a paint or hardware store, check the colors outside as the hues and tints can appear different in the store’s light. Or, take home several of the paint samples and view them under various lights. Also, remember that the color you eventually select will appear much more intense on your four walls than on a one-inch chip. Therefore, if you like the color on a particular chip, it’s best to opt for the next lighter shade to stay in line with your color choice. To make sure you’ve chosen the right color, paint one wall in the selected shade and let it dry. That way you can examine the entire wall in various lights to make certain that it is indeed the right color for your decor.

Mixing Paint Colors

If you need to mix paints in order to obtain the proper shade of paint, make sure that you adjust your eyes so you can judge the colors accurately. Because color can saturate your eyes, look at a white surface for a period of time (several minutes) before combining various shades of paint. Looking at a white surface aids you in seeing color with better perception.

Choose Darker Colors for Larger Areas

To make a room feel more cozy, choose shades of paint with a darker, richer hue. Such colors as rust, brown, forest green and dark blue make a room look smaller and therefore more cozy. Using darker hues or tints works out well if you have an apartment with higher ceilings too as darker shades balance things out. Paint the ceiling the same color as the walls to give the room a warm and secure feel. Paints in darker colors are always well-suited to areas that are larger or rooms with higher ceilings.

Select Lighter Colors to Open up a Space

If you live in a smaller space, then you can use lighter, paler hues of paint to make it feel more expansive. Light blues, lilac, pale yellow, soft rose and mint green will all give a room a cool, serene feel as well as make the space you’re residing in feel more roomy. Light colors can also provide a cooling effect in areas, such as kitchens, that are often warmer than other areas of the home or in south-facing rooms. Or, use dusky pastels, such as rose or peach, which provide a warming influence in colder, north-facing rooms.

Use Striking Contrasts

You can create interest to a passageway or a room by painting the walls in contrasting colors. Such a color scheme works out well in narrow hallways. For example, painting one wall in brown and another in peach, or choosing a cool and warm color scheme, can add a striking effect and give the illusion that the hall is not as narrow as it seems.

Paint decorating can enhance the livability and ambiance in your apartment. Make sure your colors coordinate well with your drapes and furnishings. Choose the right color scheme, and you’ll inspire a decor tailor-made especially for you.

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