When helping clients with choosing paint colors for their homes, I start off with a question, “What colors are you most attracted to?” This gives a good feel of where to start with choosing paint colors. It’s easy to find just the right color with the variety of paints on the market. Remember that today’s neutral shades can pick up varied undertones from permanent fixtures throughout your home. If you love the gray walls in your neighbor’s kitchen, don’t expect that color to look exactly the same in your kitchen - unless your illumination, flooring, cabinets, backsplash and countertops are exactly the same.  

Color is very psychological and can evoke certain moods and perception of space and temperature. Wall and ceiling paints need to be carefully chosen because they envelope you and tend to remain for a long time. Stepping from a bright orange room into a dark blue room and then stepping into a bold purple room gets tiresome quickly!

I always recommend that you choose wisely and use bold wall colors conservatively. And keep your wall colors to three per level of your home. Make sure the colors combine nicely for a cohesive look. For example, a blue tone works well as a major accent wall used with a neutral gray-blue on remaining walls. Carry the blue tone onto the gray-blue walls with artwork and accessories. And add fabrics with the blue tone throughout the room. This creates a comfortable and memorable living space.


  • Find a color swatch you like and move it around to every wall and every fixture in the room. If the swatch picks up undesired tones, the paint will do the same on your walls.
  • There are an abundance of neutrals that will show a trace to a deep saturation of color. This is the best way to keep your walls neutral and get the color you want, without having your home look like a crayon box.
  • Use the same depth of color on accent walls and adjoining walls for a contemporary look. Have both wall colors combine harmoniously.
  • Avoid stark paint colors that have no connection with upholstery, fabrics, art, or anything else in the room.   

These tips work whether you're personalizing your home for living, or staging your home for sale!  

Joan Inglis, Interior Designer and Master Accredited Staging Professional®, is the owner and lead designer of Carolina Spaces, a full-service home staging, luxury home staging, model home merchandising and interior design firm based outside of Charlotte in Lake Wylie, SC. Carolina Spaces provides services to the Charlotte, NC region and throughout the Southeast. Call 1-855-SPACES-5 or contact us online for more information on our award-winning services.

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