Picking paint colors

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white pine's picture
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I seem to spend a lot of time looking at colors for walls and trim.  Sometimes there are ones that are just perfect, other times...repaint.   I have tons of books for inspiration, but what about you?   Do you have favorite rooms where the colors clicked just right?  Would you share the colors you used?  What is your favorite?

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tedwin's picture
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Learned of this site at the Mid-Atlantic conference: kuler.adobe.com

It allows you to play around with the color wheel.  Pick a base color and find complimentary colors.

white pine's picture
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Thanks,

  A lot of companies are making it easier to find colors that go together.  I was more or less asking what your favorite color combinations are.

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I live in a 1908 house in the Southeast and we went with an historic color palette through a Lowe's paint line at the time.   For example, my reception hall is Jekyll Island Resort Blue.  Most of the "common" areas (living room, hallways, and foyers) are a creamy, pale yellow.  There is a lot of woodwork and everything has high gloss cream white trim (with the exception of a few mantles and doors that had been left in their natural stained wood state).  My dining room is a deep red and kitchen is a sunny yellow with red and black decorating accents.

It was easy to do the guest rooms because the colors complement the furnishings. 

This is my sixth home and I went outside my comfort zone from neutrals to a lot of bolder color choices in some of the rooms.  The wall colors were mostly pukey tans and greens before we re-painted the entire house (literally, some walls were the color of puke!).  

Decor to me was one of the really fun parts of innkeeping!  Have fun with it!

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Silverspoon's picture
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Tis the season to paint!  Just finished a guest room and 1/2 bath on our side so the colors are fresh in my mind.  First I consider the lighting in the room, number of windows, exposure etc.  Then I look at the things that will not change, like the color of the wooden pieces, bed, bureau etc.  Then I listen to the room to see what color it should be....that's the individual creative side that you'll need to practice.

In the guest room I kept the same color that has been in there for over 20 years.  Ben M's #312, a warm bright yellow that contrasts nicely with the black iron bed, natural wicker chairs and warm pine dresser and wide pine floors.  I used BM white semi-gloss on the woodwork and it looks great!  Shutters on the windows, black and white prints framed in simple black moldings really pop against the wall color.  

In our bath I used a Ralph Lo ren color mixed by BM: Brompton grey....a deep shade that reads green.  Here I used a flat paint on the walls and a BM "cotton balls" white on the woodwork with white bath fixtures and chrome accents.  

 If you have mahogany furniture you might consider BM Shaker Beige, a warm brown/tan that is mellow and lovely.  Mesa Verde Tan is darker and can be used in an adjacent space, like a bathroom.  

Good luck with the project!!

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white pine's picture
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 I like the yellow with black accent combination.  I did that combination in my own kitchen replacing drawer and cabinet hardware with wrought iron.  Looks nice.  Your rooms sound lovely!  Isn't it nice when the colors make you happy every time you see the combo? 

Madeleine's picture
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09/29/2011

Oh, sorry, you asked for colors names. I get all my paint at B Moore, but I get the sample cards everywhere. So, Behr colors, mixed at B Moore: True Navy and Innocence (creamy off white). B. Moore color: Dark Buff (forum color mentioned before) paired with the Behr Innocence. Next room: B. Moore Urban Nature (green) paired with True Navy.

I have been using the Behr color card I got 15 years ago!

My own bedroom is Sidewalk Gray. Living room is Paris Green. Everyone loves my kitchen cabinets which are B. Moore's Beverly Hills (yellow).

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Madeleine's picture
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Funny you should ask...I am in the middle of painting a room and am not happy with my choice. It is actually pretty close to the lighter brown on the forum. It's too rosy. The bedding is more peachy. Sigh.

OK, how do I do it...I've lived with these wallpaper colors for 8 years now. Sometimes I just walk into the room and think, it would really look better in THIS color. But, it involves stripping the wallpaper and repairing the walls underneath.

It worked fine in the first room. Had I stuck with my original choice for this room, I would have been happier.

I will use the bedding colors if I'm not planning to buy new bedding. My next color combo is one I loved in the 70's- navy blue and green.

white pine's picture
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  Funny thing, but I was thinking of our homes dining room, more peachy than the light brown here....Kansas Grain Behr..maybe you should look at it!  It wasn't what I thought it would be but I really like it. 

 Light always plays havoc with color choices, but sometimes some colors just look great together.  I saw a blush/light coral pink with a creamy white in a photo once, very elegant, could never make it happen....

I've got a box of paint chips too, and more samples than any right minded person ought too...3 more yesterday

Madeleine's picture
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Not redoing it. If it was MY bedroom, sure, but not one I see only to clean! Second coat goes on tomorrow. I think the problem was the fluorescent lights in the store vs the natural light in the room.

Generic's picture
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02/24/2011

We picked a neutral (bear) and all the rooms are the same sensible hue of paint. Once we picked it, we looked at the subtle suggestions the system made and we basically have used those, except the bathrooms, where we always use Zinner's white bathroom paint. I keep the paint with primer in the house along with a brush and mini roller so that I can do touch ups at any time. I feather out from the patch and it's done. I don't know how many times I have had to repaint small sections, but since I always have some of the paint around, it's rather easy to do a touch-up. Paint with primer, a real time saver, especially if you have to patch the wall. (They also now have a patch material with primer built in. And I keep a sanding sponge around. Tape a large envelope under and you catch 90% of the mess.)

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gillumhouse's picture
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This sounds like something that gets the sarcastic reply of "Right!" but it is ture. My house "told " me what colors to use. The main colors are NOT my favorites. The dominant color  is shades of pink from soft to apple blossom with burgundy trim. Two rooms are off-white with sage green trim, both bathrooms are light blue with the darker blue trim. The foyer and my library and the best room have the shades of pink.

I love a bright kitchen so the kitchen is yellow with sage trim.

white pine's picture
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OK, this is what I mean....I love seeing the colors, but I always wonder what are they?  I just used a Behr Whisper Yellow and a Glidden Country White combo.  What off yellow and sage did you use?  See what I mean..kind of these are a few of my favorite things...

gillumhouse's picture
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Got mine at Sher win - Wil liam s in 1996

Generic's picture
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That's the nice thing about the "bear" system. Once you have one colour (or two) you can ask it to find you matches.

white pine's picture
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Yup, I did that the other day, then didn't like their match, but figured it was in the same tone, so I used it to match and came up with a trim color that worked with the first one! 

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