Are you ready for a change but don’t know where to start? A can of paint can go a long way to transforming your space, but picking the right color can be a challenge. Take cues from the environment, start with your favorite fabric, and other secrets for unlocking the right colors for you.
Here are some tips for starting the house palette that may have you stumped.
Use nature for inspiration. Mother Nature does it best. If you see colors in nature that appeal to you, translate those colors with paint, fabrics and art.
Yield to a view. West Michigan provides us with some incredible views. Let the view help you dictate the palette. Neutrals tend to enhance a view. The landscape and weather conditions will provide an ever-changing scene for you to enjoy.
Paint Sampling 101. Create a sample board, it will allow you to move the colors around and observe them at different times of day. Get a scrap piece of white board and paint large swatches of your selected colors. Always use two coats and make sure to sample in the finish you will ultimately be using.
Start with one great fabric. Do you have a great fabric that made you declare love right then and there? That fabric is now a great starting point for a whole room palette. Use it to select paint, rugs and art. The colors don’t have to match, just complement one another.
Consider your location. If you are near the lake, river, dunes or other location-specific environments, use the terrain as a guide. Cool blues from water or warm browns from the dunes might make you feel at home, inside and out.
Think about contrast. Many times colors are dismissed as “too light.” Think about the furniture or prints you might own. A pale color can serve as a beautiful backdrop for eye-pleasing contrast.
Use restraint with bright colors. Color is great, however, a room can suffer if there is too much of a good thing. Bright colors are best shown against crisp white details like casings or curtains.
Use art as a guide. Many think matching your art is the key, but it’s not always the best choice for your palette. Start with a piece of art, then select complementary paint and furniture. This is where a color wheel can come in handy. Remember: Opposites are good.
Consider function. What will you be doing in the room you are working on? A palette can often be determined by function. Are you working on a child’s room, nursery, playroom or breakfast room? Here is your chance to have some fun. Try color combinations that are cheery and whimsical, yet cohesive. You may not want this look all over your house, but it’s OK to let loose in a room, especially if it suits the function.