How to Pick the Right Paint Color

June 20, 2022

For many of us, choosing a paint color for our home is one of the most daunting steps in design. With thousands of brands and countless shades, it’s easy to find yourself staring at the walls, unable to pull the trigger on a fresh coat of paint. If this is you, you’re not alone! So take a deep breath, embrace the process, and join us as we start from the beginning.

Sit In Your Space & Observe

Before jumping in, take a good look at your home and ask yourself how you feel and what inspires you. Taking the time to observe is the first step in ensuring the paint you choose is harmonious with the colors already present and the overall vision for your space.

I like to treat my initial mood boards as a story of my home. I take note of the views from my window, paintings on the walls, or my favorite textiles and begin by articulating exactly what I want to feel when I step through my front door.

Colors are emotional. It’s no secret that the places we spend our time significantly affect our well-being. Home is where you go to unwind after a long day, spend quality time with family, and create lasting memories — why wouldn’t you create a space that helps nourish those moments? After all, when we design a home, we design a life. 

Take The Time To Sample 

When choosing the perfect paint color for a home, I live by one rule — sample, sample, sample. Most likely, the paint swatches in the store will look completely different when brought into your home. Narrowing down one or two colors and testing similar shades on your walls can save you a great deal of time and money.

During this process, don’t be afraid to paint large swatches on multiple walls in the room and live with them for a few days — I promise, the momentary eye-sore will be worth it! Take the time to observe how lighting changes within your space and which emotions the colors spark when you walk into the room. 

Remember, the larger the color swatch, the easier it will be to see how the undertones in the paint change throughout the day and make it easier to determine which paint color looks best in the space.

Photo by Amy Bartlam. Design by Rincon Road.

Not All Brands Are Alike

One of the most common mistakes I see is switching paint brands halfway through a project to save money. Since each brand uses slightly different base colors when mixing, these minor changes can make all the difference in the world and make it nearly impossible to color-match. Once you decide on a paint brand, stick with it! If you’re in the market for high-quality interior paints, have a look at some of my absolute favorite brands — Sydney Harbor, Benjamin Moore, and Farrow & Ball.

Photo by Amy Bartlam. Design by Rincon Road Design Studio.

Embrace The Process & Welcome Yourself Home

In the end, all you need to know is what you’re drawn to, without any real explanation of why. Go about your design process slowly, and trust your intuition — when it comes to design, it’s hard to make any big mistakes…unless you take yourself too seriously! After all, enjoying the process is how the most beautiful spaces are born.

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How to Pick the Right Paint Color

For many of us, choosing a paint color for our home is one of the most daunting steps in design. With thousands of brands and countless shades, it’s easy to find yourself staring at the walls, unable to pull the trigger on a fresh coat of paint. If this is you, you’re not alone! So […]

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