Switching Swatches, Choosing Paint For Your New Home

Does swatches laying all over your table make you feel anxious? Choosing the right paint for your new home can feel overwhelming. Whether you are designing your new home or simply designing a room in your current home, paint is one of the most important decisions you will make. How do I know? I’ve done it both ways. When designing my first apartment for myself, many years ago now, I chose a color scheme by taking a few swatches from a paint store and hanging them up on my walls.


After another year of living with said walls – hardly what I would have called “designing” – I sat down with an interior designer to plan out our next house. It wasn’t just about choosing colors again but also how they worked together to create different tones throughout the house.


Design Tips, Not Rules


These are not rules to live by but rather guidelines for designing your home. That being said, it is always okay to break them if you know what you’re doing and it works!


So now that you have a general idea of where I’m going with this whole designing-your-home thing let’s get back on track. How do you choose the best paint colors?


Designers suggest making a list of all of your rooms in an excel spreadsheet or some decorative wall scroll/poster paper.


Next, create a palette of paint colors and corresponding swatches. If you’re designing a room for yourself, just choose three to five colors that you think look good together. You can also ask family or friends what they think your favorite color is. It’s important to remember that designing your home is not about designing for everyone else, so don’t feel pressured to use their opinions as choice number one!


After deciding on the paint palettes, take them into the various rooms and place them against different backdrops: walls, carpets, curtains, everything! Does this color work? How does it feel and look with these elements in play?  


I like to use my camera roll on my phone as a way of documenting these thoughts. I like to use vocabulary like “good” or “bad” along with basic color descriptors (pastel, bright, etc.).


Once you’ve chosen the paint palettes that work best for your home, think about how you can further enhance these colors by designing around them. If it is true that designing your home is all about setting up a mood and tone, then paints are integral to creating that design. Don’t be afraid to go bold! Painting the living room red would not have been my first choice, but I painted it black with gold accents and made it work!


When designing your new home, choosing paint colors should always be approached as an adventure. Never feel intimidated because the worst thing you can do is paint a room and not like it. 


Trends: Should You Follow Them or Should You Borrow From Them?


The short answer is yes.


Let me explain myself. If there was a trend going on for all white everything – don’t do it! Your space will look cold and cheap. Always use the trend as inspiration rather than following them completely.


It’s always good to take a trend and switch it up a bit by adding your twist to it. For example, I’m designing an all-white apartment for my youngest sister right now, but I’m putting little splashes of color throughout the space with pillows or drapes. I know that white is not her favorite color, so this works out perfectly!


Trends are constantly changing, but there are always classic colors that will never go away. 


Right now, pale pinks are huge for weddings. Should you paint your bedroom light pink? Hell no! Save your money and just paint it another neutral tone because pale pinks and all pastels, in general, will never go out of style.


Also, don’t paint your accent walls the trendiest color because it’ll make everything else look dated. Paint your accents neutral, and they will prove to be timeless.


Now that we’ve talked about designing around trends let’s talk for a minute about designing specific rooms or parts of a room with different colors.


Should You Paint Different Rooms Different Colors? Why Or Why Not?


If you choose to design every room in my home with a different paint palette, I consider you brave and risk-taking


It is okay to do so, though just remember when designing my house: the most important thing in designing a room that is not getting the most light is to have high ceilings. If you do that, then feel free to go crazy!


Suppose your home has small rooms and low ceilings. Consider one color palette for every space, this will make the rooms look larger and more cohesive.


Choosing Paint: The Final Top Tips


To sum it all up, designing your new home should always be an adventure, and choosing paint colors should be no different! 


Follow trends but don’t follow them completely; consider putting your twist on what’s trendy; and finally, designing individual spaces with unique paint palettes can be risky (so keep that in mind), but it’s okay to switch things up here and there too.


If all the above seems overwhelming you can always go with a custom builder like McCall Homes, where they offer a myriad of floor plans and other design choices. Sometimes narrowing your choices can be the best first step to getting the home you want. 


I hope this has given you some good advice on designing around paint colors and designing different spaces with unique color palettes. Designing a home is all about setting up a mood and tone, so choosing paint colors should always be approached as an adventure!


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