Part 2 Getting Started With Color: Q&A with Seattle Interior Designer Faith SheridanWritten by faith
As an Seattle interior designer and member of the Benjamin Moore Color Advisory team, color is always on my radar. I live and breath color and know how deeply it impacts how we all feel. That impact is especially relevant to our own homes and personal spaces.
This is Part 2 of my interview with Home Savvi and I hope you enjoy the dialogue. Lately I’m attracted to the energetic shades of orange so I included a color combination below from Benjamin Moore. I like how the green softens and freshens the combo.
HomeSavvi: So we have chosen our basic driver, defined our painting project, assessed the room’s lighting, and determined our style. What’s next?
Faith: At this point, you are prepared to start putting together some color concepts for consideration. Magazines and web sites are good places to start looking at color ideas. If you are looking at a combination of styles and accessories for your room, you will get a sense for what direction you are heading into. That’s when you also begin to consider how much color intensity you want. If your inspiration color is a really bright green, you need to ask yourself how much you love it, and how much of it you want in your space. Maybe this color would be better as an accent wall, rather than an entire room that could be too overwhelming. Then make an exploratory trip to the paint store to get a paint color that is as close to your basic driver as possible. Look also for other colors that are in the same color family, colors that are part of large existing surfaces in the room that you know you’re going to keep, such as a sofa, carpet or rug.
HomeSavvi: Earlier on, we touched on how natural light changes color. What is the best way to ensure no surprises once the color is applied?
Faith: Color intensifies on the walls, so make sure you look at the saturation of the color you select. I recommend using the handy two-ounce sample testers you can find in most stores together with a disposable application tool, and go home and paint in the corners, on opposite walls, in one to two square-foot patches. Then live with it for a couple of days throughout the day, so you can see how the color changes in the sunlight in the morning, around noon and in the evening. Is the color turning too cool, or too much of a pink or orange? Then you can start eliminating some shades, and decide if you prefer lighter or darker tones.
HomeSavvi: There are many types of paints out there on the market. Which one would you recommend the most?
Faith: If the room you are painting is a high-activity area, you will need a sturdy, washable paint. If you are environmentally conscious, you can now choose from a wide selection of eco-paints. Flat paint is a good choice because it is easy to touch up compared to paint that has sheen to it and typically needs to be completely redone. On interior walls, I especially like Benjamin Moore’s Aura (watch?v=N0eCCvxnRb8) matte / flat finish, which is exceptionally durable and suitable for all rooms, including kitchens and baths. It can camouflage small wall bumps, cracks or other imperfections since this finish does not reflect light. With only a slight hint of shine or gloss, eggshell finish is good for walls, and holds up better with cleaning than typical flat finish paint. Satin finish paint is smooth with a bit more gloss, and is most often used for windows, doors, trim or ceilings, but it can also be used as wall paint. It is particularly suitable for kids’ room walls, kitchens or bathrooms, or in high-traffic areas. Semi-gloss is most often used on doors, trim and cabinets in kitchens and bathrooms. It is easily cleaned and provides a nice, subtle shine. Gloss paint finish is almost reflective and mimics the look of enamel or plastic. It produces a dramatic look on cabinets, trim, furniture, walls and ceilings, and magnifies any surface imperfections, so careful preparation and sanding is essential before painting with high-gloss paints.