Paint Colours For Your Home

What Are The Tips For Selecting Paint Colours For Your Home?

The easiest way to choose the best interior paint colours is to start with your favourite colours. When you start with the colours you love, you are not bound by traditional colour schemes for a particular decorating style. With your favourite colour as your base colour, you can use it to create a colour scheme around it. Your favourite colours can be the perfect inspiration for your new colour palette for the whole home.

Find Paint Colour Inspiration

Magazines and catalogues have always been the staple of decorating inspiration. You have access to thousands of pages of inspiration on the internet. Retailer sites can be inspiring with their room vignettes, and paint brands can also show you ways to use colour in your home. Social media sites such as Pinterest and Instagram offer colour inspiration refreshed in real-time. Pinterest is great for creating inspiration boards for your favourite ideas to keep all your ideas in one spot.

Use Colour Theory To Create A Colour Scheme

You don’t have to study colour theory to get great ideas from a little colour wheel. These inexpensive colour tools can generate colour scheme ideas quickly. With a turn of the wheel, you can see how colours might relate to each other and learn the basics of colour theory. Then, while you probably won’t be painting your home in the exact colours you see on the wheel, you can choose shades of those colours at your favourite paint store.

It’s easy to use a colour wheel to create a colour scheme once you learn a few easy concepts.

Get Creative With Neutral Paint Colours

Just because you choose neutral paint colours doesn’t mean they have to be laid-back. You can rev up your neutral colour palette by being creative with how the colours are used. For example, a striped wall in neutral colours adds tons of style but still keeps the room looking relaxed. Likewise, neutral wall colour with a pastel ceiling is a sneaky way to add colour without losing the soothing vibe of the space.

Pull Your Paint Colour From A Print

One of the easiest ways to choose interior paint colours is to start with a print fabric. Throw pillows, bedding, and even table linens can provide you with paint colour ideas. If you’re creating an accent wall, look at the boldest colours in print. If you would like to choose a paint colour that is more subtle or for a larger space, look at the colour in the small details of your print fabric. Then, take a fabric swatch to the paint store, so you can choose paint strips to view at home.

Look Outside For Ideas

Bringing the outside in is a popular inspiration for colour schemes. Whether you choose foliage green or the laid-back blues of the beach, exterior-inspired colour schemes are meant to be restful and relaxing. Be sure to sample your favourite paint colours at all times of the day and night and with the window treatments closed and open to get the most realistic view of your possible choices.

If you’re going to use your landscape as inspiration, observe some dos and don’ts of decorating with green.

Find Your Paint Colour In Artwork

An interior designer’s secret is choosing colours from artwork in your home. Most artists are masters of colour and light, creating colour schemes for their pieces. You can benefit from their insight by choosing colours from a favourite piece of art. You can also choose complementary colours from the same work of art to create a colour scheme.

Look To Historical Colour Inspiration

Just because you love Craftsman colour schemes doesn’t mean you have to decorate in a Craftsman style. Historical paint colours are offered by many of the paint industry leaders. Use these collections as inspiration and tailor them to your decorating style.

Benjamin Moore’s Damask Yellow is a rich and warm wall colour that would work well in various decorating styles, including Craftsman and mid-century modern.

Try A Lighter Or Darker Shade

Sometimes, you need a little adjustment to find the right interior paint colour. Before you abandon your paint colour choice too quickly, consider a lighter or darker shade of the same colour. Many paint colours appear on a paint strip in gradual shades, but you can also ask your paint store to customise it by percentages of light or dark shades.

How To Use Undertones To Find Your Perfect Paint Colours

You can be unpleasantly surprised by the undertones when choosing interior paint colours. Undertones are the colours lurking beneath your favourite paint colour. For example, a simple beige may not be all that simple if it has a strong green undertone. The only way to accurately read how an undertone will appear in your home is to sample the colour. Undertones from other surfaces in your room can also change how your paint appears due to reflection, so sampling is essential.

Ensure that undertones work and why it matters when choosing interior paint colours.

Do Your Homework Before Shopping

Choosing the right interior paint colour starts at home. Before heading to the paint store to gather paper samples, gather inspiration from catalogues, magazines, and fabric swatches. It will keep you from grabbing too many paint colour options on your first trip to the store. The hardest part of choosing a paint colour, at first, is having too many options.

Once you narrow down your paint colour choices, return to the store for paint colour samples to try at home. This step is crucial to finding the perfect colour.

paint colours for your home (3)

Sample Your Paint Colours Before Committing

It is a simple rule that you should never ignore. Always sample any paint colour you’re considering. When you commit gallons of paint and hours to your project, you have to get the colour right the first time. You don’t want to skip this step. If you look at the back of the paint store, there are stacks of cans of returned paint from people that did not take the time to sample first. Don’t be one of them. Instead, calculate exactly how much paint you’ll need to minimise waste.

How To Flow Colour Throughout Your Home

If you’re decorating a small home, flowing paint colour throughout the rooms can give the illusion of a larger space. Flowing paint colour through your home can also create a relaxing vibe. The most attractive way to use flowing colour is to choose a neutral paint colour that will be your signature hue for your home. Each room can have its accent colours, or you can use the same accent colours in different amounts in each room. Keep flooring similar from room to room, and consider moulding to tie everything together.

Use A Colour Consultant

If you want a new colour scheme and aren’t sure which interior paint colours to choose, a colour consultant can point you in the right direction. In addition, a colour consultant can provide you with paint colour ideas to sample or even a custom-designed colour palette for your home.

Before you meet with your colour consultant, gather ideas and inspiration to share with them so that they can see what you have in mind. Ask if your consultant can visit at a particular time to see the challenges natural lighting poses for your space. Don’t be surprised if your colour consultant suggests changes to your lighting to correct colour problems in the room.​​​

Paint Colour Apps Can Make Choosing Paint Colour Easier

Choosing a paint colour can be easier with a phone or tablet app. Paint colour apps have been evolving and improving since they were first released, so you might want to check them out again if you’ve tried one in the past and it didn’t work for you.

The most popular paint colour apps give you the ability to match a colour you see anywhere, as long as the phone or tablet camera can read it. Though it may not be an exact match, these apps can suggest similar colours. The best apps can also offer colour palettes created around your colour and ways to share your palettes with friends on social media. Look for extra tools like paint buying tips and basic DIY videos.

Don’t Pick Your Paint Colour First.

I know it seems natural to get the biggest things done first, but it is much easier to choose a paint colour that goes with your furniture and decor than choosing decor to go with a paint colour.

Use Testers.

Buy testers in a few colours/ shades and paint a large enough area on a few different walls so that you can see how the light hits it at different times of the day. Try your best not to test your paint against white walls cause it will throw the colour off. Just do a larger test area to get a better feel if you have to.

Almost all of the brands now have testers available for a few bucks. So it is well worth spending the money to buy a few to test in your space before purchasing gallons of the colour. The leftover samples are great for touch up and other small painting projects.

Test Your Paint Colours Against Furniture And Fabrics.

Don’t only test your colours on the wall. Instead, paint a piece of poster board and hold it up against your sofa, table or other items that will be in the room to see if it goes. You don’t necessarily want to match, but you do want the undertones to go nicely.

Don’t Choose Paint Colours Through A Computer Screen.

With the advent of online colour matches and “try it on” paint preview services, choosing paint colours might seem easier. Remember: easy isn’t always better!

With the variety of devices that we use to browse the web (laptops, desktops, smartphones) and the dozens of display options our devices have (like iPhone’s Night Shift), it’s important to remember that colours display differently depending on your screen and its settings. So the paint colour on your favourite retailer’s website could look completely different on your walls! We suggest looking at paint swatches in-store and taking your favourite colours home for comparison. Then, make it a family affair by bringing a loved one, your kids, or even a friend with you when you’re ready to colour shop!

Treat Your Space Holistically And Consider Neighbouring Colours.

When looking at an object—a banana, for example, or the orange squares—our eyes assess colour based on the wavelengths they reflect us. Our eyes also account for the wavelengths around us when we look at an object and adjust the object’s colour accordingly. It explains why a banana is yellow to an onlooker, whether sitting in the dark or visible in full sunlight. It also explains why a pink wall next to walls of different colours may appear more (or less) vibrant than the pink paint swatch in your hand. Be sure to accommodate your other wall colours and test colours on your wall to avoid a paint combination fiasco!

Pick Colours Based On The Mood You’re Creating.

Have you ever wondered why bathrooms and bedrooms are often soft shades of blue, green, or light grey? These colours help create calming environments, which is important in relaxing spaces, like our bedrooms. However, this may not be the case for all rooms in your home—when choosing paint colours, remember the mood you’re trying to establish and pick colours to match it.

For example, if you’re renovating your downstairs workout room this year, choose a bright red or maroon for this room—red is not only energising and exciting. Still, it has scientifically been shown to induce greater physical stimulation in test-takers.

Use The Largest Test Swatch Possible & Test At Home, With Accurate Lighting

After choosing a few possible paint colours, please pick up the largest paint swatches your store has and bring them home. Or get sample-sized testers and paint them onto bristol boards so you can move them around your space.

Look at the large samples in all kinds of light in different room parts at different times of the day. Look at them next to the couch, the rug, and the art. 

Lighting will affect how your paint colours look in your home and may even make the same colour look different in one room than the next. The larger the swatch, the easier it will be to determine which paint colour looks best in your space.

South-facing rooms tend to have slightly warmer light due to the sun coming in all day. The natural lighting will be a yellow-white light and may wash out colours, at least a little. Most paint colours can work in a room with southern exposure, but you may prefer a cooler colour to balance the yellower lighting. 

North-facing rooms will have cooler, blue or grey natural lighting. You can use a cool colour for these spaces, but it may seem even cooler and more blue-grey and chilly than in another room. Warm paint colour is preferable in a room with northern exposure. 

East- and west-facing rooms will have either warm or cool lighting, depending on the time of day. So, you could use either warm or cool paint colours in rooms with eastern and western exposure.

paint colours for your home (2)

Choose The Right Paint Type – Paint Sheens

Another thing that affects how your paint colour will look is the sheen. The higher the sheen, the easier it is to keep clean. Unfortunately, the higher the sheen, the more it will show imperfections in a space. So, if you’re trying to hide any flaws in your walls, go with a lower sheen.

Gloss will be highly wipeable and easiest to clean but is too shiny for walls. Gloss is good for baseboards, trim and sometimes cabinets.

Semi-gloss will be almost as easily cleaned, with significantly less shine, although it’s not good on walls in large spaces. Semi-gloss is great for trim, cabinets and high moisture areas, like bathrooms.

I would suggest a satin finish on walls in higher traffic areas like hallways and kids’ rooms. Satin finish paint is also good for bathrooms because it’s wipeable.

The eggshell will be a little more durable than flat or matte paint, so choose it for spaces that see some traffic and might get a little abuse, like living rooms or dining rooms.

Flat or matte is best in rooms where the walls won’t be touched much, like master bedrooms.


In conclusion, following these tips when selecting paint colours for your home can help you create the perfect look that you’re going for. By considering the mood you want to achieve, the size and layout of your room, and which colours complement your natural skin tone and hair colour, you can narrow down your options and choose a paint colour that will make you happy for years to come!

FAQs About Builders Melbourne

Should I Paint All The Walls In My House The Same Colour?

As a general rule of thumb, you should never paint your entire home one singular colour. That isn’t to say that you can’t use the same colour in some capacity throughout your entire home; however, it shouldn’t be the primary wall colour in every room.

What Is The 60-30-10 Decorating Rule?

What is the 60-30-10 rule? A classic decor rule helps create a space’s colour palette. It states that 60% of the room should be a dominant colour, 30% should be the secondary colour or texture, and the last 10% should be an accent.

How Many Colours Are Too Many In A Room?

According to the 60-30-10 rule, you should only use three colours in any room – although you can successfully incorporate many different tones of these three colours.

Should Every Room Be A Different Colour?

You can do every room of your home in a different style and colour palette if you want to. But if you feel like your home is a mess or too hectic or want to make more peace, you might consider creating more cohesion with each room.

What Is The Three Colour Rule?

The underlying premise of the three colour rule is to not combine more than three colours in your outfit at any one time. The exception is black and white, which are technically not ‘colours’ but tones and can be intermixed as the fourth colour in your outfit.

Scroll to Top