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(NAPS) Whether it's the sifting through mountains of swatches or trying to remember unique names for the color blue, selecting a new paint color for your home can be a daunting task. However, Chris Stigliano, merchandising director at Lowe's, says there are three stress-free steps you can take to ensure you choose the right color.
Step 1: Size Up Your Room
Consider its shape and size: A lighter color can make a small room feel more spacious, while a darker color can help an immense room seem cozier.
Take architectural details into account: Think molding, trim, columns and brackets. What's attractive and what's not? Varied intensities and hues can complement architecture, furnishings and art. The right paint can accentuate a room's features or hide them.
Factor in function: Will the main purpose of the room be eating, sleeping, working, entertaining or something else entirely? A warm color in the living room or family room creates a more comfortable and inviting atmosphere for guests than a cooler one.
Step 2: Determine Color Palette
Consider yourself: Paint color should reflect your mood and personality. What are your favorite colors? If you're having trouble selecting a shade, try looking in your closet. The colors you enjoy wearing are the ones that make you feel good. You're the one who has to live in the space so live with the shades you love.
Emotional response: Studies show that room color can affect your mood. Hues of blue, green and neutrals--such as beige, gray and white--can create an overall sense of calm. On the other hand, shades of red, orange and bright yellow provoke high energy. Find out the colors that work best in each area of your home.
Work with what's already there: If you've already chosen an interior decor or if you're working with a room that's already furnished, focus on a favorite fabric color, piece of art or furniture, or other object. Bring a pillow, piece of fabric or even a favorite pair of shoes to Lowe's and an associate will custom blend a paint shade to match.
Step 3: Get Samples
Ask for a color wheel: The color wheel has thousands of hues to choose from so bear in mind that paint is generally divided into two groups: bolds--reds, greens, pinks, blues, greens and purples--and neutrals--pastels, beiges, grays and whites. Neutrals are generally considered to be a safer choice because they blend with many different decor styles, meaning if you plan to change your decor later, you can often keep the same color walls.
Get three or four colors you like: Colors in the store often look different at home because of the changes in light. Rather than running the risk of getting a gallon of paint you don't like, try a few samples first. Samples are an inexpensive way to ensure you're making a good choice.
Test: Paint a one-foot square in each color on your wall. Over several days, watch the colors at different times of day, comparing natural sunlight and artificial light.
By following these simple steps, you will increase you color confidence. So don't be afraid to paint bold and bright. If you love a vibrant color such as peacock blue or fuchsia, go for it!
If you buy your paint from Lowe's and aren't in love with the color once your room is finished, Stigliano reminds us that you can simply return the unused paint to your local store and they will replace it with another color. For more painting ideas, tips and product solutions, visit Lowes.com/Paint.