Choosing Paint Colors

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I am very indecisive. Very. Just ask my husband. 

So when it came to choosing paint colors for our new house, I was probably not the best person to be making the decisions. Shockingly, I not only picked out all of the paint colors, I did it pretty quickly! 

I did some browsing on Pinterest to get an idea of what I wanted, and as soon as I found a color I liked, I went and bought it. The speediness was partially because we HAD to paint the rooms before they were livable because of the smell and dirtiness, and partially because if I had taken the time to do samples and paint swatches, I would have never made up my mind. 

We are almost done with the entire upper story of our house, and so I am going to share the colors we chose. We have used Behr Ultra paint, in a mixture of satin and eggshell finishes, for the entire house.

Family Room

This was the first room we painted, and kind of became command central while we hurried to finish the other rooms. We spent more than one night sleeping in here until the bedrooms were done!

Before this room had white walls that were water damaged, and seriously filthy. The carpet was so stained I didn’t think it could be salvaged. 

After a few good rounds with our carpet steamer, I was pleasantly surprised at how many of the stains came right out! I knew I wanted to choose a wall color that would really brighten the room, so I chose Aqua Pura.

Screen Shot 2015-04-23 at 9.52.03 AM

I tend to gravitate towards neutrals, and the thought of too much color on the walls scares me, but this was PERFECT. Aqua is my favorite color, and this adds just enough tint to brighten the room without overwhelming it.

  

Master Bedroom

The people who previously lived in this house claimed they did not smoke inside, but the yellow dripping down the walls of the bedroom said otherwise. This room also had some very old, dirty carpet in it. 

We started by ripping up the carpet, hoping that there was hardwood underneath. Not only was there hardwood underneath, this is what it looked like.

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Yay! One thing that we didn’t have to totally overhaul!

I’m not generally a fan of accent walls, but for some reason I felt like this room needed one. For the darker color I used Dark Ash and for the lighter color, Gentle Rain. 

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Dining Area/Office

We have a big room in the front of the house that serves as a dining area, and then on the other end I have my office set up. At some point I may add some chairs by the fireplace and create a little sitting area.

Not only is this room HUGE, the lighting is dramatically different on each end. In the dining area there are 4 large windows. On the office end there are none and the lighting is akin to a cave. There is no overhead lighting, and the sconces on the fireplace turn off and on on their own, and one appears to be crying blood. Some sort of rusty liquid is dripping from the bottom of it, so until an electrician checks it out we have opted not to start another fire use them. 

I wanted this room to have SOME color on the walls, but it needed to coordinate between two drastically different living areas, and not darken the space any more than it already is. I ended up choosing Dolphin Fin by Behr. 

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I love it! It is light, but obviously not white. It’s fairly neutral, which is what I was hoping for. In such a large, multi-purpose room it gives me the freedom to change up my decor when I want to.

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Kitchen

The kitchen is somewhat small and has very little natural light. Most of the walls are fake-brick paneling. At first I tried to use leftover paint and did the top of the walls white and the bottoms dark gray, thinking it needed something bold. It didn’t. It needed something that didn’t make it look like a cave. I ended up using Behr’s wheat bread. A Taupe/Gray/Tan that is soft and neutral, it added enough color to make the kitchen look clean, without being so overbearing it made it look smaller. Someday I might want to brighten it up a little bit, but for now this is a nice, soft color.

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Hallways/Miscellaneous

There are several small hallways and spaces in the house that we used leftover paint to cover. We even had to pain the insides of closets because of the smell.

My daughter picked out the paint for her room, Behr’s Pastel Jade. We used the leftovers of this color to paint and accent wall in the bathroom that is in the basement.   It is a nice mint green with a hint of Aqua and really brightens both spaces without overwhelming them with color. 

We still need to paint the basement, but that will likely require some Killz as the previous residents had cats that used the entire basement as a litter box. Ugh.

After ALL of this painting, I do have a few things to recommend. First of all, we chose paint with a primer mixed in. For some rooms (like our family room) it was amazing. It only took one coat! But for rooms like the front room (with the dining area and my office) everything was extremely dried out from the fireplace and the walls DRANK the paint. In that room a primer to seal, and then separate paint for color would have made more sense.

These trim brushes are the bomb.com. They are precise enough that it cut the taping I had to do ahead of time down to a minimum. Also, you can see in several of the pictures that my husband is more of a “hurry up and paint and we will clean up the drips later” sort of painter. These Wet Ones will take the paint right off of linoleum, trim and other surfaces. 

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Hi! I'm Melissa!

Melissa is a former hairstylist of 20 years who has a passion for living a simply creative life. She loves inspiring others to pick up a planner and get their lives organized, to clean out a closet and minimize their clutter, and to clean up their physical and mental space to lead their most fulfilled life. She is newly single, a mom, soon to be grandma and crazy dog lady who constantly rewatches The Office.

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