If your home is beginning to look a little drab nothing can transform a room quite as cost effectively as paint. Easy to apply even for a novice, paint is available in every colour, shade and hue imaginable and costs very little compared to other home improvements. Paint can make a small room bigger and a large room more intimate, it can soothe or enliven, it really is a very powerful weapon in the DIY armoury. Its not just the walls than can benefit from the power of paint either, old furniture can be brought back to life, tile paint can bring a kitchen or bathroom suite right back up to date, you can even create your own modern art.
If you have already reached for your roller, just hang on a minute. You have neatly brought me too the subject of the perils of painting. The readily availability and relative low cost of paint means it is all too easy to jump in without thinking. Just because it said “Lemon Dream” on the tin, this does not mean it won’t end up a custard nightmare on your walls. Seventy percent of painting is in the planning. First you must decide what you want from a colour. A neutral backdrop of off-whites, creams, or shades of putty or mushroom will create a warm and relaxed atmosphere whilst giving you lots of freedom in your furniture choices. These shades are perfect for today’s design cycles which are much shorter than in the past meaning people are changing furniture at a faster rate. They are very forgiving and will compliment most styles. For example, adding some wooden horizontal blinds, a chocolate leather settee and a faux fur rug and throw will create a chic city apartment vibe. Keeping the same backdrop but instead adding a brightly coloured fabric settee with cushions and simple roller blind in a contrasting colour will create a much more fresh and youthful feel to the same space. Opting for a perfect white background is a little more challenging as it leaves it up to you to create warmth rather than create it for you. It is however a much stronger style statement and a great colour to create strong contrast with (think black leather settees or dark grey Venetian Blinds). White walls really help showcase your furniture by allowing them to grab all the attention so if you have some choice items you’d like to show off then white is the one for you.
If you want similar chic appeal but with a darker, more intimate colour then a rich plum or deep burgundy is the way to go. A lot of people shy away from colour as they think it will make their décor seem juvenile but a plum or a burgundy will add a real touch of sophistication if coupled with dark woods or monochrome accents or both.
For a fresh and rejuvenating alternative to white in the bathroom why not try a zingy lime or a pale lemon. These colours work just as well in the kitchen where a fresh and clean look is desirable.
In the bedroom it is best to stick to more subtle tones such as muted lavender or lilac. Pale greens and blues are fine but it best to avoid red. Red is exciting because we associate it with danger and passion and I therefore not conducive to good nights sleep. If you want to add a little passion in the bedroom, do it through the soft furnishings like the bedspread or a rug.
Once you have decided on your colour, make sure all your surfaces a clean and free from dust and that you have masked off the edges of your painted area with tape. Use a brush around the edges and a roller for large expanses. Be sure to keep the room well ventilated leave plenty of time between coats.
Whether making a bold statement or creating a subtle backdrop, you are sure to be amazed by the effectiveness of a few licks of paint.