Paint Color Considerations In Interior Design

If you have been living in your home for years and have decided that it is time for an interior design update, planning a custom home or have just moved into a new builder home, you might have decided that personalizing the space with new paint colors is in order. Paint can be difficult to select and there are some things to consider before you begin to implement your new interior design.

Your home may be full of outdated color schemes which date its appearance. Many times an outdated look can be a combination of two things, furniture styles and paint colors. If you have classical pieces of furniture including antiques, your updating task my just require new paint, arrangement and the addition of some contemporary accessories. If you have purchased new furniture in the past, updating your home might require more. As the decades pass, furniture design takes on a unique character in color and style that places it in the decade in which it was manufactured. There are exceptions including timeless modern design, but usually these pieces are very expensive and thought of as collector’s pieces.

For the masses who purchase furniture in a retail store, you might want to assess each piece when it comes time freshen the appearance of your home. It is important to make this assessment at the same time you are choosing new paint colors so the transformation will be complete. Today, we are seeing a trend continue that began in the 1990’s, oversized furniture. While you are safe in your selections now, there will come a time when furniture trends head another direction and these current pieces will be outdated as well. If you have furniture that is very different from the larger, contemporary pieces of today, then you might want to think about a adding a current piece or two to your existing collection. That in conjunction with a new paint scheme will refresh the appearance of your existing home or make your new home a current expression of your style.

After you have made decisions about your furniture, you can focus on a new paint scheme. Selecting paint colors is a very personal process. A visit to your local paint store to explore the possibilities is an excellent way to begin. If there is a piece of art in your home that you are attracted to, a fabric or even a clipping from a magazine, take it with you to see what colors would compliment or help you achieve your desired look. The myriad of color chips that are available may be intimidating. Begin with a neutral then branch out to the colors that you would like to compliment it. It is always a safe bet to add two additional colors to your neutral. Too many colors and your new design may lose focus and become visually conflicting as a final product.

Most people have certain colors that they are attracted to or that create a sense of comfort for them. If you should decide to stay with the colors you love, as they are an extension of your personality, you can update these colors. For instance, in one decade you might see a bright yellow, similar to a canary yellow, mixed with a parrot green. Ten years later those same two colors might still be mixed together in interior design, but you will notice how the colors have shifted. The yellow may have become more of a cream or gold and the green may have drifted to olive. You still have yellow and green, but the look is completely different. You could do this with your current color scheme or go in an entirely new direction. You will notice current color trends in furniture stores and in home improvement magazines.

Once you have selected a new color palette, refine your colors by selecting three close variations of each and take the samples home to analyze. For example, if you have chosen a bright red, take your first choice and then one red that leans toward orange and another that leans toward blue. If you need help selecting these colors ask a professional at the paint store. Before you make a final decision, it is a good idea to buy a sample and paint a test area on your wall.

A final thought that most people rarely consider when selecting colors for their environment. Your family pictures are a treasured visual history. Have you ever looked at a photo and thought that the people in it looked ill or pale? While the photography plays a role, the color of the room may have the most to do with the problem. There are colors that make skin look unhealthy. These colors tend to sallow complexions regardless of skin color. There are cool colors such as some blues, grays and greens that can do this, but rarely do warm colors such reds and oranges. Do not let this eliminate a color for you. Just search for its warmest tone. You might have been to a party where a room was painted in a rich brown or a vibrant red and your picture was made. Compare that picture with any you may have where the room behind you was, for an example, a cool gray. You will see how much more vibrant the subject of the photo looks in the warm room versus the cooler toned room. This is just a suggestion to consider, and remember, all colors are affected by and can be manipulated with lighting.