Choosing colours can be one of the most difficult aspects of any
paint project. Many homeowners worry they are not going to like
the colours they have selected. Understanding colour systems and a
few simple terms relating to colour can help homeowners make better
colour decisions. Look at the colour wheel and keep it mind or refer
back to it when reading the information below.
Primary colours are the pigment colours that all of the other colours
are made from. These colours are blue, red, and yellow.
Secondary colours are two primary colours mixed together.
Tertiary colours are a primary colour and a secondary colour mixed
colour Families are groups of colours that are made from the same
Neutral colours are gray , white, and black, that contain no other
Monochromatic colours on the wheel are one basic colour (hue), but
have different values (lightness (tints) or darkness (shades).
Adjacent colours combine two or more colours located next to each
Complementary colours are opposite each other. Use a subtle colour
and a dominate colour to avoid clashing.
Triad colours are three colours that are used together, with one
being the dominant colour and the others being accent colours.
Using the colour wheel and mixing various colours together can be a
good starting point. However, most people will select colours for
an interior room from fabrics that may already exist in furniture
and window treatments. Idea's for exterior colours can be drawn
from the colours in roofing shingles, and brick.
Itís always best to buy a small amount of a paint and try it out
to see if that is the most desirable, no matter how many colours
are being considered. Those small colour chips can sometimes be
difficult to judge. Some colours can be bought in a quart while
others will cost a gallon if the colour is undesirable.
Light colours make a room, or the exterior of a house, appear
larger while dark colours will have the opposite affect. Lighting,
and especially direct sunlight, will affect colour. Look at the
samples in the room where the colours will be used to get a better
idea of how the colour will look.
Consider some other important facts when selecting colours. Darker
or more dramatic coloured paints contain less titanium (see Primers
And Paints) and may take multiple coats to cover. If applied
incorrectly, Hatbanding (see Paint Failures) will appear. Darker
colours are extremely difficult to touch up, and like sheen
finishes will show touchup marks.