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Tips for Choosing a Paint Color

(Getty Images)
Face it, we gals do like a little change....
and painting a room
is an easy way to satisfy that itch.
But choosing a paint color often brings our ambitions
 to a screeching halt because we can't decide on a color. 
So where to start?
First, let me say this:
  there is no ONE PERFECT COLOR 
for any room --
it's a matter of personal choice
and that depends
on your taste,
your sense of adventure,
and the feeling that you'd like to create.
Want proof? 

Here are three photos of the same room.
The paint color (and accessories)
giving each room a distinct personality.

Can you see the differences?
Can you sense the mood for each room?

Vibrant yellow walls turn up the temperature in this room,
making it warm and and welcoming.
Red, orange and yellow are 'neighbors' on the color wheel.
This is an analogous color combination.

The rug, walls and drapery are all Beige,
but there's nothing boring about these neutral walls.
Don't be shy about mixing patterns!
A dose of white pulls it all together.
(all three rooms from Better Homes and Gardens)
Green and red are opposite one another on the color wheel.
This forms complementary color scheme,
which usually is quite dramatic.
But because the green is so pale this room feels peaceful.

Still puzzled?

Here's a basic approach that I used to help one client
select a wall color for her recently re-modeled kitchen.

The room had rich surfaces:
dark brown granite,
creamy travertine on the backspash and floors,
 with gleaming mid-brown cabinets.
Her husband wanted to paint the walls white,
but she thought she could do better.
I agreed!

She already had chosen fabric.
We were well on our way!
TIP #1 - choose an anchor fabric that has at least 3 colors in it.

She wanted a casual, welcoming, kitchen,
and planned to display her collection of Hadley Pottery.
Tip #2 - Decide if the room is casual or formal and what
feeling you want to convey.

My client thought about so many colors --
creamy yellow, grey and light blue, but couldn't decide.

"There's always white", her husband chimed optimistically.

In the end, she selected SW 6218, Tradewind.
Tip # 3 - A safe choice: ue the background of the fabric
for wall color.

The ceiling will be painted a soft creamy white, 
and her dear husband will paint the trim his color of choice,

Every room needs a starting point. 
An inspiration.
It might be a rug, a painting or drapery fabric.

Once its chosen, you're on your way
to building a balanced, appealing room.

More tips to follow another day. 
Now I'm off to paint!



  1. Sharon,
    Your post is so wonderfully done! You have a true gift for presenting information in such a visual way. I see why all your work turn out beautiful.

  2. Great information! I love your client's fabric! I've been itching to paint my hallway or Master Bedroom, but I must wait until I finish making my curtain panels and valances. Hope you have a grand evening. Toodles, Kathryn @TheDedicatedHouse


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