Be Bold: Choosing Paint Like a Pro

Your color choices can highlight your unique style.

By Tina Jepson


I’m going to start this article with a “bold” disclaimer: I love color.


As you approach my front door, you’re instantly greeted by a splash of medium blue paint accentuated by a bright yellow wreath. Upon entering my house, you’ll notice that three-quarters of the walls in my living room are painted with Sherwin William’s Invigorate, an unabashedly bright shade of orange. It’s effervescent, in-your-face, and it’s perfect for our family.


Color reflects who you are as a person and what you want from your space.  Yet, in some ways, it seems like the fear of color is ingrained in us the very first time we paint a room. “Future buyers won’t like it,” we sadly note. So, instead of choosing a color we love and are inspired by, we select shades considered palatable to the masses, like white and ivory.


Well it’s time to throw that mentality out the window! If you plan to truly live in your home and not just prepare it for the next buyer, then you have to feel comfortable in it. And that comfort starts with paint!




I challenge you to be bold. Here’s how to choose the right paint for your space like a pro.


Establish Your Room’s Purpose

Just because you love yellow, red, or purple doesn’t mean that this specific color is good for every room in your house. In fact, paint works wonders in altering a person’s mood, and thus, you should pay attention to where you put certain colors.


Bedrooms, often a place to calm down and reflect, are traditionally painted shades of blue and gray. Have you ever wondered why so many people choose to paint their kitchens yellow? It’s because it’s an invigorating, energizing color perfect for lively get-togethers and rambunctious family dinners.




Note the “vibe” you want in each room and find a paint color to compliment well before you buy your paint cans.


Here are some of the “energies” you’ll notice between different colors.


  • Red: Evokes passion, statement-worthy (bedrooms, studies)


  • Orange: Energetic, fun (living areas, kitchens, bathrooms)
  • Yellow: Light-hearted, refreshing, happy, carefree (kitchens, dining areas)


  • Green: Close to nature, inspirational (work spaces, bathrooms, bedrooms)
  • Blue: Calming, inviting (bedrooms, bathrooms, living areas)


  • Purple: Rich, luxurious (living areas, bedrooms)

Pick Your ‘Hub’ Color & Follow the Wheel

After you’ve decided how you want to “feel” in your room and determined which colors will invoke those feelings, it’s time to select a “hub” color to work from. You may choose to use this paint color in your hallways, or as the main attraction in your living room. It’s completely up to you!


From here, use the color wheel to go room-by-room, building from your “hub” color with either complementary or analogous shades. Whether you decide to go bold or soft, you want your space to flow nicely and a color wheel can help you with that.




Finish with Accents

Next, use the color wheel to pair colors from the opposite end of the spectrum to complement the “hub” hue and accentuate your color choice.


For example, if you love orange as much as I do, then paint a blue accent wall or incorporate splashes of blue in your furniture or home accents.




Keep in mind that color doesn’t necessarily have to come in the form of wall or trim paint. You may decide that, although you love red with a passion, green paint works better to create an inviting, natural-feeling living room. To make sure you’re adding a touch of red, add throw pillows, picture frames, and flowers to perfectly complement and accentuate the green.




At the end of the day, you want to be happy and comfortable in your home. If white walls and gray accents just aren’t your “thing” — then be bold and go bold! Remember that paint can always be changed, but your mood is a bit harder to adjust (especially if your room doesn’t invoke the right emotions).  


You and your family have a story to tell, so show the world who you are and how you feel via your walls!



Images used with permission, courtesy of and

Next: Maximalism for the Masses