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Picking paint colours for your home

colour tableLooking for a colour combination that will 'wow'?
Here are a few tips for finding colour inspiration in unexpected places.

Unexpected combination

For a recent bedroom makeover, we were inspired by purple and yellow. These "It" colours came straight from the runway to home design.

Why purple and yellow? Trend setters such as Pantone devote their energies to studying the effects of colour on mood and the economy. Yellow is here to cheer us up in these uncertain times, and purple to calm us down - a visual therapist of sorts.

Check the mail

Colour trends permeate graphic design, jewellery design, even packaging for perfume and makeup. You will find the latest colour trends in many publications. My favourite magazine is filled with variations of deep purples that fade to lavender and grey, pinks that range from blush to fushia, and dare say, hints of mauve. Yellows - from sunshine to pure gold - serve as accents.

Paint store

Although you may be shopping for your home and not your wardrobe, don’t throw clothing catalogues in the bin just yet. Clip and save the pages that inspire you. Money may be tight, but window shopping is free. Check out store displays for the colourful hues of the season. And while magenta may not suit your hair or eye colour, the jewel tone may be the perfect accent in your next design project, especially when tempered with grey.

Visit your local decorating centre

Paint companies, such as Prominent Paints stores and their various decorating centres, do the work for you with racks of paint swatches and, better yet, brochures with perfect colour combinations. You can even pop onto their website to use the online Virtual Painter to see how various colours will look in a room. Now how easy is that?

Here are a few tips for working with colour:

  • Start with one colour. We chose a mostly monochromatic colour scheme of purple. This design principle focuses on a single colour with variations in lightness and saturation.
  • Find an accent. For interest, we tapped into a complementary accent colour (colours opposite on the colour wheel). A pale, buttery yellow on the ottomans and shams provides a soothing spot to rest the eyes and break up the monochromatic scheme.
  • Vary shades. To keep things united, look to a paint swatch for guidance. The wall colour and mirror colour are only two steps away from each other on a paint strip. Similarly, to stay on target with fabrics, use paint strips as guideposts. – Janice Anderssen

Source: Property 24

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