Avoiding Paint Mistakes in Your St. Louis Remodel

Written by Megan Gerdes

painting mistakes in your remodelIt happens. You choose a paint, love the sample swatch, but when it comes right down to it, the sheen isn’t quite right, the color isn’t what you expected, or the type of paint isn’t practical for the room itself.

Making the wrong paint choice can bring you right back to square one.

Paint Sheen Considerations

When you go to the paint store to choose paint, most people just focus on the color, but you should also be thinking about the type of sheen.

Sheen is a big issue. Most people don’t think too much about it, but it does matter, and it matters where you apply certain sheens.

For instance, many older houses have plaster walls, many of which have decades of scratches, nail-holes, imperfections, and previous repairs. If you apply shiny paint to a surface like that, it will amplify those imperfections about ten times more than it would with eggshell.

In the kitchen, you want the walls to be scrubbable, but there are eggshell finishes that are easy to clean and that won’t show every little flaw when the light hits it. If your kitchen is bright and full of light, this is significant, because it will, in effect, cheapen the look of the décor you’ve worked so hard to accomplish, and it will change the way the color looks too.

painting mistakes in your remodel

You want your walls to look soft – not sharp and cold. An eggshell finish creates a softer, warmer look and feel in the room, like having the illusion of a pillow or a soft fabric, whereas reflective surfaces give the impression of being cold and hard. 

Where Some Shine Is Desirable

Countertops are generally quite glossy, but they have their own visual texture. We use other textures on the walls to soften the look. You want something that will absorb the light, diffuse it a little bit so that it’s less reflective.

Typically, you’ll want something shinier for the trim or cabinet doors. For these items, you’ll want to choose a higher sheen because these are areas that are getting a little bit more abuse and you’ll want to be able to clean them up easily. They are smaller areas, so they won’t have as much impact on the overall interior design.

Choose A Paint Color And Getting It Right

To most people, colors on a paint strip are too light. If this is your impression, you may lean toward a more saturated color – but once you paint it, you’ll see how deep it is. Colors like yellow, especially, can be very challenging to gauge.

Test It Out Before You Buy

If you want to be sure the color you choose is the right one, do a little test spot first. You can pick up sample pots for $3, paint a chunk of poster board or foam board with it and tape it to your wall. Move it around so you can see how the light hits it at certain times of the day because the color is going to look completely different first-thing in the morning than it will later on. Live with it for a couple of days before you dive in.

painting mistakes in your remodel

Google It!

Another great way to check out how a color is going to look is to Google it. You’ll likely find thousands of images posted on blogs, Pinterest, and so on, that will tell you much more than a paint chip ever can.

Don’t Panic: It’s Only Paint

Ultimately, remember that it’s only paint. Don’t be afraid to try something new. What’s the worst that could happen? You’re out a few bucks, and the whole thing can be fixed in a day just by painting over it.

If you do make a paint mistake, however, make sure you’re repainting it the right way – don’t just slap another coat of paint on it, because depending on the detail of your cabinets and trim, you don’t want to lose sight of the goal.

Also, once you’re putting paint on top of paint, you run the risk of it chipping or being damaged more easily, meaning that you might have to strip it again and redo the whole room.

In the end, if you’re really not sure or if you still have concerns, it might be worth it to hire a professional.

Are you concerned about painting mistakes in your St. Louis home? Drop us a line today – we’d love to show you how we can help. 

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