Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Beware of Matchy Matchy

Have you seen the TV ads of homeowners bringing their lamps and teddy bears (or whatever) to the paint counter of a big box retailer? They look so relieved when the friendly paint store employee informs them that, "Yes, we can match this color!"

They may be relieved at the paint counter, but that doesn't always mean they're going to love the paint color on the walls of their home. Though looking for paint colors that exactly match a favorite object may seem like the best solution to finding the proper hue, the wall color may not look as good as you imagined when the paint is on the walls in the 3 dimensional space of your home. This is because your eye perceives a paint color differently depending upon the amount of color, the light conditions and the paint tints and base used to achieve that wall paint color.

Here are a couple tips to guide you when you're looking to experience a favorite color on your walls:
  • Take your favorite object to the store, but don't exactly match the color. Choose a color that is either 1 to 3 shades lighter or darker. Now the color of the object and wall will relate, but not try to replicate each other (much easier than the near-miss of trying for a color match). The colors of each will be enhanced.
  • Sample 2 to 3 versions of the same color. If you want a purple bedroom, sample a dark, dusky eggplant purple, a deep reddish purple and a lighter blue gray purple. Testing limited variations of the same color will educate you on which direction to go with a color you love.

See examples of my color consulting portfolio and articles on my website. Call me to schedule a color consulting appointment in Bend, Oregon or a phone appointment if you don't live in Oregon.

Read more of my Choosing Colors blog entries.

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