Tips and Tools for Finding the Right Interior Paint Colors

Whether you're looking to create a calm and relaxing space or something a little more dynamic, choosing the right interior paint colors is essential. But with so many options on the market, it can be tough to know where to start.

Creating a color scheme for your home's interior can be a daunting task. There are so many factors to consider, from the furniture to the overall feel of the space. Finding the right colors for your house can be simple if you plan ahead and use the following tips.


Pick a Color Scheme to Coordinate with Existing Colors

There are thousands of paint chips at the store. How do you know if the colors are right for your home? The first step is to narrow your choices before you head out to the paint store.

Take at least three existing colors of the floor, walls, furniture, and fabrics of your space to help pick the main color, adjacent color, and accent color.

  • The main color is usually the color that you want to be the predominant color in the space. This color should be a base color that compliments the other colors of the space, but it can be a color from your favorite accent: pillow, fabric, vase or chair.
  • The adjacent color is usually a color that compliments the main color. It can be used to highlight certain features or to provide a bit of contrast.
  • The accent color is usually a color that adds interest or depth to the space. It can be used to accentuate certain features or to add a pop of color.

    When you have your three colors, you can continue to narrow down your choices at the paint store. Once you have found a few colors that you like, it is always a good idea to test them out before making a final decision. You can do this by painting a small section of wall and observe how your choices coordinates with the rest of the space.

    Luckily, paint companies offer free color cards that suggest coordinating combinations, so all you have to do is pick one you like and then test the colors in each room. It's a lot less stressful than trying to figure out the perfect color on your own.


    Know Your Warm Whites and Cool Whites

    There's no denying that paint color can make or break a space. The right shade can highlight the best features of a room, while the wrong hue can make it feel off. When choosing interior paint colors, it's important to consider both the undertones of the paint and the light in the room.

    When it comes to whites, there are some clues to differentiate them. Here, we break down the difference between warm whites and cool whites, plus provide our top picks for each.

    Warm Whites

    Warm white paint colors have a bit of yellow, red, or orange in them—colors that are found on the warm end of the color spectrum. These hues can make a room feel cozier and can be used to compliment wood finishes on floors, cabinetry and furniture.

    Some of my favorite warm white paint colors include:

    •  Marscapone by Benjamin Moore
    • Cloud White by Benjamin Moore
    • Navajo White by Benjamin Moore

    Warm White Benjamin Moore

        Cool Whites

        Cool white paint colors have bluish undertones, making them ideal for brightening up a space. These hues can make a room feel more airy and can be used to create a crisp, clean look. If you want a white that will make your room look bigger, a cool white is the way to go.

        Some of my favorite cool white paint colors include:

        • Decorator's White by Benjamin Moore
        • Oxford White by Benjamin Moore
        • Paper White by Benjamin Moore

          Cool Whites Benjamin Moore


          Paint tip: trim is either the same color as the walls or a brighter lighter color, so make sure there is contrast between the walls and trim.

          Use the 60-30-10 Color Rule

          It can be confusing when designers say we need a "balance of colors." In this case, we mean to pick colors that work well together. Instead of one boring monotonous color, use two or more colors that "go" together.

          To achieve that well planned designer appearance, use the 60-30-10 rule. This simple color guide can be a great starting point for choosing your interior paint colors. Basically, it suggests using 60% of a dominant color, 30% of a secondary color, and 10% of an accent color throughout your space. This will help create a cohesive and well-balanced look.

          Add a Focal Point with an Accent Color

          Just because a room is mostly white or neutral doesn't mean you can’t add some color. An accent wall where the other walls are fairly flat will liven up any space and give it personality.

          Paint tip: By picking a shade three shades darker than the main color, an accent wall will give a room some punch. Use the color strips to find the color family.


          Paint color chip


          Paint Your Ceiling

          When you walk into a room, the first thing you notice is the floor, then the walls. The ceiling is often the last thing we think about when it comes to decorating our homes. But your ceiling is actually the fifth wall in your home, and it can have a big impact on the overall look and feel of a space.

          Don’t be afraid to use color on your ceiling! A bright white can be beautiful, but so a darker color or even a rich jewel tone.

          Painting your ceiling can add so much dimension and interest to your space. Adding a pop of color to your ceiling can brighten up a room and give it a unique focal point. It's also a great way to add personality to a space.

          Painted Ceiling

          Painted Ceiling - Modern House
          Source: The Modern House


          With so many color options out there, finding the perfect palette for your home can be tough. Have you ever chosen a color scheme for your home, but it just didn't feel right? Maybe the colors clashed with each other or they were too bright.

          It can be tough to pick the perfect color palette, but these guidelines can help. In this post, we discussed how to use the 60-30-10 rule to create a cohesive color scheme and how to choose the right colors for your space. I also shared tips for painting your ceiling in a way that will add visual interest to your room.

          Have you tried any of these techniques? Let me know how it went in the comments!


          1 comment


          I have never been in the position to pick wall colors, but i can see how a huge variety may be intimidating. Thank you for these valuable tips.

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