Monday, June 11, 2012

Testing Paint Colors

When you pick paint colors, how do you do it?

What I used to do: Go to the paint store, preferably right before closing since I decide at 9:30pm that I have to paint a wall TONIGHT.  Go through a few tiny paint chips.  Buy a gallon of one color.  Try it out on the wall when I get home and since I've already spent $25 on a gallon, I use it whether I like the color or not.

These days, the paint stores have made it easier on us.  First of all, the paint chips are often quite large to give consumers a better idea of what the color looks like.  Better yet, though, they have made small paint samples inexpensive and easy to acquire.  A 7-8 oz jar (around $3) is enough to put several large squares all over the wall so you can test the color. You want to make sure it doesn't clash with the Picasso, right?  So instead of jumping in both feet first, you can buy a few jars and try on that apple green or sky blue.

Near the front door.

I recommend trying the colors out in multiple locations.

Next to the lamp.  And also on the back wall near dark furniture.
 You'll want to see how it looks with natural light as well as with lamps and overhead fixtures on.

On a wall in the dining room.
Why bother?  Well, I'm so glad we tested out the Warm Gold in both rooms because in the living room, it is lemony and almost florescent.  In the dining room, photographed in the last picture, it is much warmer, almost like mustard.  

I also held up some art pieces I own to make sure the colors go together well.  One painting didn't look so good with the gold, so it will have to be in the living room instead.  

The Warm Gold will definitely go in the dining room now, and the Cayman Bay was a hit for the living room.  While the blue is moodier than I had expected, I wanted something dramatic, and this shade fits the bill.  So now we're in the process of covering up holes and taping the windows for primer.

P.S. If you'd like to see the paint chips and examples, see this post.


  1. I love those tiny little jars! I bought a couple when trying to match the cabinets in the kitchen so I could paint the trim.

  2. I heart paint samples, and will never buy a whole gallon of paint without sampling again.

  3. Great tips, I am SO the person that picks at the last minute but I add another step, when I am unhappy with the color, I grab other left over paint and mix a new color until I like it making it impossible to ever find the same color again if I need more. LOL Thanks for sharing and I am a new follower!
    Hope you are having a great Monday!

  4. Mkay. Why have I never noticed your AWESOME ceiling beams before??


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