Painting Colors For Office/Den/Rec Room In Bellevue | RitePainting

What colors should I paint my office/den/rec room in my house in Bellevue?

Should I paint my ceilings and walls the same color? I live in Bellevue.
December 14, 2016
Interior Painting Project
I live in Kirkland. Should I keep my leftover paint in my garage or inside the house?
December 28, 2016

Odd as this may sound, color choice is both the single most challenging element of an interior painting project and yet the greatest opportunity to turn a humdrum result into a spectacular result.

Painting BrushesMany people I know like to go with the trendy color of the year, but I prefer to take a long term approach. After all – hopefully, at least – you should get many years of enjoyment out of your painting project, and many years later that trendy color of the year will have long faded (not pun intended) into history. The best approach is to choose colors that age well, yet offer you a fresh, uplifting result the moment the project is completed and the painters have moved on to their next project.

There’s only one problem, though. I’m not very good at choosing colors. In the past, I painted rooms in my house with a simplistic approach. I’d go to the paint store, and look for colors I liked. Then I’d paint the rooms with what I brought home. Some time later, I realized that my approach was a bit weak, so I left it up to my partner to choose the colors. Still, the results were always a bit ordinary, and it wasn’t until I paid an interior designer to give me a color plan, that I understand how important color choice was and is. The designer asked a number of questions, mostly about what each room was going to be used for, both now and years into the future. From there, he came up with a scheme I would never have thought of, including what are called “accented” walls, chosen to highlight some aspect of the main chosen color for the room. I didn’t really get it, though, and I reluctantly agreed to the approach, without making a single adjustment to the designer’s suggested plan. I had paid a few hundred dollars for the service, so I wasn’t going to throw it away. If it worked, it was an approach I might repeat in the future. It wasn’t until I returned to the house after not having seen it for a day that I realized just how well everything worked out. I didn’t know why to colors worked so well, but they did. Each room was transformed in its own way, but there was definitely a ‘theme’ to the entire project. I’d never for a moment consider choosing my own colors again, after that experience.

Sample colors don’t look the same when painted on walls

Another mistake I made often in the past was not to do at least a little ‘test area’ of the proposed paint type and color before committing to the big purchase of gallons of paint and going for it. I can’t tell you what happens to all colors when they are tested in a room because, each paint and color behaves in a different way. Each deviates from the impression book sample to the wall in its own unique way. Some colors seem to get richer in bigger painted areas, while others looked more washed out. Mostly, though, colors seemed to come up darker on the wall than they looked in the color catalog at the home supplies store. I didn’t have any of these problems when I used the interior designer chap. For any project following that experience, I never did any actual testing, but for every project before it, I regretted not doing it whenever that was the case.

Start the paint color process far in advance of your intended painting project

Many people forget how long it can take to pick the right colors. If you do indeed make your own color choices without outside help, you are highly advised to take samples of the paint home and paint some test areas of at least several square feet, for each paint you are considering, but all of that process might take weeks if you end up disqualifying a number of shades and colors in a row. Remember, you have to buy the paint, clear a test area, do the work, let it dry and then examine it over a few days. Do that three of four times and you’ve already spent two weeks, and that’s assuming you actually do choose a color.

Painting contractor companies have told me numerous times that they call their client a few days before the scheduled start date of the project only to learn no colors have been chosen. Make the choices early, and take deliberate notes on what choices you made. Having that important step done properly will make it easier on your hired contractors, and will ensure a superior result in the end.

Buying the right amount of paint for the job

Professional painters will be able to tell you exactly – or very accurately, at least – how much paint you will need. Among the considerations are, how different the underlying colors are to what you plan to paint. If you’re going from light beige to almost light beige, a single coat of paint might be enough. If you are going from dark blue to light pink, it’s more challenging. In my experience, it was always harder to go from a darker color to a lighter color than the other way round, but each color change and circumstance will be different.

If you are working with an actual painting contractor, and not doing the painting work yourself, he or she should be able to tell you how much paint to buy before the job starts. That’s if they have been inside your house and measured the task before them. A little math and some experience allows a professional painter to work it out pretty easily. They’ll aim for slightly more than they need, with a view to returning any unopened, unused cans later if needed. Aiming right will help reduce subsequent visits to the paint store.

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