Choosing the right colour


One of the biggest decisions to make when remodeling a space in your home is paint colour. Many homeowners gravitate towards certain colour palettes, taking into consideration personal preference, the manner in which the room is used and how the shade will ‘fit in’ with other paint colours used in the home.

But one aspect that homeowners often overlook is how much light the room receives. So important when choosing paint colour, lighting – both natural and artificial – can have a drastic impact.

Avoid decor disappointment by doing a little research ahead of time! Here are some things to look into before selecting a shade: what direction does the room face? How much natural light does it receive (one window? two? five?) What type of artificial lighting is being used?

According to, a north-facing room will have a cool and bluish light, meaning that bolder colours that will amplify the sunlight will look better than muted shades. A south-facing room will complement both light and dark colours well, but keep in mind that dark colours will look brighter and light colours will be luminous. An east-facing room is ideal for reds, yellows and oranges. Colours will be warm and yellowish in the morning and take on a bluer tinge in the afternoon. Finally, a west-facing room will produce many shadows, making colours look muted in the morning before they take on a beautiful, warm glow in the evening.

Keep in mind that the sheen of the paint you choose will also affect the colour. Glossy paint will reflect light, while a matte finish will allow the true colour to shine through, especially under bright lighting.

When it comes to choosing light bulbs, traditional incandescent bulbs give off a yellow light that makes warm colours more intense and cool colours look dull. The new energy-efficient LEDs can be purchased to emit a warm or cool colour. You can even purchase “smart” LED lights with colour that can be controlled wirelessly. Fluorescent lights tend to create a cool, blue light that complements greens and blues well.

If you’re still undecided, purchase a paint colour sample and paint a small section of the room. Check in periodically throughout the day to see how the light in your space is playing up the colour.

In Burlington you can go into one of the many paint stores to ask for help.  I have found that Benjamin Moore Paints – Neo 1 Paints on Fairview & Appleby is a great spot to ask for colour help.

You can also check out Pinterest or Houzz to see what colours would work in your home.

Jennifer Birch

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