Choosing a Colour Scheme


Re-painting is one of the more simple ways of changing the look of a house, or just a single room. But as with all creative pursuits the choices are often more difficult than the execution. Choosing the right colour scheme is fundamentally important if you want to be pleased with the end result.


It is a mistake to not have any set ideas about a colour scheme. Open-mindedness is usually good, but if you already have a particular room to re-colour you will have to find an option (one of many) that work for that particular situation. It is a mistake to just look at colour sheets and find a shade you like. The shade of colour you choose must suit the room and the other furnishing you have their. It must also suit you. Remember, the furnishings, curtains and even carpets can also be changed to suit the new paint, though this can be an expensive option.


One way to choose room colours that suit you is to look at the colours you use for clothing and other items. You will be spending time in the rooms being painted, so consider yourself part of the overall effect. And consider how you feel with certain shades of colour. If you live in the house, you should be at one with it.


Narrow down the colours you like on the store colour chart to 3 or 4 that you feel are suitable. You can get a small sample pot and paint a 1 foot square area of the wall; see which suit the room best.


Else, take a photo or two of your room under ideal conditions, and use Photoshop to change the wall colours in the image. It may be hard to get an exact match to the store colours, but a photo of the colour chart can get pretty close; you can certainly eliminate some bad choices with this method.


Consider whether you want to modify the rest of the room after the re-painting. Some renovations can be done in two or three stages. You might choose furniture in advance to suit the new colour, or vice-verse; but you have to plan carefully as a mismatch later can ruin the whole effect.

Metallic Paints

Metallic paints can be used in a number of different ways. They have been around for many centuries, but have not tended to be used for house interiors till fairly recently.


Metallic paint is produced by suspending powdered metal in an oil base. The basic idea has been around since the Bronze Age, but the modern process has improved greatly throughout history. The base almost always has to be oil as water based metallic paints are prone to rust and discolouration. Some non-rusting metals are an exception to this. Mica powder can produce good paint results in oil or other bases.


Metallic finish can be added to other paints, keeping the same general colour while altering the overall effect and lighting properties. This mixing process is a skill, and requires the powdered metal to be mixed with a thinning agent before being added to the paint. Incorrect missing methods cause clumping and air bubbles in the paint, which produces an unsatisfying result. Care must also be taken to calculate the right amount of paint; it is hard to make a second batch identical to the first, and using two different batches of paint on the wall gives an uneven finish.


The flake size of metallic paint is one aspect of its appearance. Coarse metal flakes produce a brilliant finish; very fine flakes look dull, though this is sometime the desired effect. Coating the metallic paint with a gloss will give the illusion of depth; glossy metallic paints look very thick with the addition of a good glossy coat.


There are two contrasting results aimed for with metallic paints. One is metallic paint on a rough surface, which give a pleasant antique, rustic look. The other is metallic paint on a very smooth surface, which allows a lot of reflective light, and produces a very slick, modern look.


It is rare for a room to be done entirely with metallic paint, but railings, furnishings, frames sculptures and other items can be extremely effective with a good metallic finish. Decorating a wall with a metallic mural is another good option.