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6. Punch up kitchens and bathrooms. Because much of the wall space in those two rooms is occupied by other things — cupboards, windows, doorways, mirrors, bathtubs — you can go with stronger wall color. “If you wuss out on the color and go with a real light color on the walls [of the kitchen], it’s going to look like you painted it off-white,” he said.
7. Consider other elements in the room. When deciding how light or dark to paint the walls, think about how the floor covering, furniture, art and other elements may set it off. Though Masica typically prefers using “colors in the mid-tone range,” the walls in his own home are “really, really dark,” he said. “But I’ve got hardwood floors, white area rugs, large art that’s matted white” to lighten the overall effect.
8. Balance the room’s natural light. Rooms flooded with sunlight benefit from cooler colors, and vice versa, Masica said. “You wouldn’t paint a sunroom on the south side of your house in warmer colors. Conversely, you wouldn’t want to paint a Caribbean blue turquoise color on a room that had a north facing, east facing window.”
9. Tie the ‘public’ rooms together with color. Either paint all the walls the same color, or connect them with coordinating colors, matching accents and other decorative details. “As you walk from one room to another, there should always be something from room A that’s carried over to room B that’s carried over into hallway C, so that as you’re looking at those rooms you’ve got some thread of commonality,” Masica said.
10. Take a test drive. Once you’ve narrowed your choices, buy pint-size paint samples and apply it to big patches of the wall, or to a separate panel that you can move around the room. Be sure to use two coats of paint. Colors look different at different times of day, Masica said, so study your choices during the hours you’ll spend the most time in the room.
Katy Read • 612-673-4583