Trying to choose a paint color can be a daunting prospect and want to help you avoid common wall painting mistakes. At JAC we know that good design can depend on so many factors, and paint color is a BIG one! Here are some wall painting tips.  We suggest you start by finding a point of inspiration (a favorite fabric, the colors of your kitchen countertops, a piece of wall art, even a page torn out of a magazine). By doing this, you can more easily narrow down your choices and avoid painting mistakes we all make and how to avoid them.

Once you’ve figured out which general color family appeals to you, set your focus on that portion of the display at the store or that section of the fan deck. There are a wide range of colors in each family, so go with what you are initially drawn to. After this, you should begin pulling paint chips.   Narrow your colors down to two or three choices, and buy a sample to see how the colors look in your home. Because the light in the store will be different from the light in your home, the best way to make an informed decision is by painting a sample in the room where you’ll be using the color. If you don’t want to paint the wall itself, buy a piece of poster-board or foam core and paint it to see how the color looks at different times of the day, in different sections of the room.

We find that oversaturated hues tend to be the most difficult look to pull off. As tempting as they are, maybe leave those colors for the professionals and pick softer tones that are more forgiving. Lavenders and grays and of course all kinds of beiges work beautifully as over all colors. Think about the psychology of colors too. Red is an aggressive color but light blues and yellows can be calming. Think about what colors you are attracted to and the tone they will set in different rooms of your home. In the bedroom for example, sedating colors are good, a monochromatic design or even darker colors to make you feel like falling asleep.  Paint the entire room or just one wall as an accent.

There are certain finishes (flat, high-gloss, eggshell, semi-gloss, satin) that look better in certain rooms and on certain surfaces than others. For instance, it’s best to avoid using a flat paint on the walls in a high-traffic area as this type of paint is often harder to clean and soaks up light, rather than reflects it. And, remember: The higher the sheen the more defects it will show.

JAC’s rule of thumb is: flat on the ceiling, eggshell on the walls, and satin or semi-gloss for doors and trim. Seems to work every time.  Common wall painting mistakes include using cheap tools and not planning ahead. We know you are trying to save money by painting your walls instead of hiring a professional painter, but using the proper tools is so important. Think of a good paintbrush as a good investment that can last many years and can be reused time and again. Equally, quality masking tape will help you avoid interior painting mistakes. Drop cloths certainly are a must to avoid inadvertently painting your floors too! And again, these items can be reused again and again. Cheap tools and materials and paint will show, after all you get what you pay for!

Happy painting and good luck!