This month is going to be all about colour because I just signed up to Maria Killam's True Colour Expert Training in Toronto next month and I've got colour on my mind.
I give tons of colour consultations and the biggest mistake made when choosing colours is the timing. During a construction, renovation or move, the ideal time to paint is before construction is over, while the construction team is obviously still working on your place, right? This means it's before any of the furniture is in, sometimes before the floor is even in which means the kitchen is not installed yet, the countertop is not there, the backsplash probably hasn't been chosen yet and the client is open to any suggestions I give them.
At this stage, I can give you ANY colour in the world and it will look fine because we have nothing to match it to. As I've mentioned before, in order to really see a colour, we must compare it to other colours, including everything that will be next to it in the same room. Furthermore, you have far more options for paint colours than you do for your tiles, cabinets, backsplash and furniture. So really the best time to choose the colour for the walls is when the floors are in, the kitchen is installed and your furniture is delivered.
The problem we face, is that once everything is done is obviously not the most convenient time to start painting. The result for most is choosing a paint colour blindly. Of course, the choice can be made off of samples. So there's solution number one: choose you floors, tiles, cabinetry and backsplash BEFORE the paint colour; if we have samples of all of the permanent finishes, we can confidently choose the appropriate paint colour.
However, you still probably haven't started shopping for furniture or even thought about furniture at this stage yet. Usually, after leaving a client's place who only wanted a colour consultation, I am confident that the paint colour will be beautiful with the kitchen finishes, but still hoping that the client will then choose their furniture based on their wall colour... which is kind of crazy.
Think about it.
After weeks of shopping, you may only fall in love with one couch, and that couch only comes in 4 different fabrics. Now what? You have 4 different fabrics to choose from to go with your paint colour or you could have had thousands of paint colours to choose from to go with your couch. It's kind of obvious that we are doing things backwards here.
So what's the solution?
I've had to struggle with this one for a while because I can't control when a client calls me and how far into their renovation it is. The only solution that I can come up with is to plan your construction like and interior designer would. Don't wait until your contractor tells you what he needs next to proceed. Create a concept for your space from the beginning, choose everything even before construction begins, shop furniture as early into the renovation/construction/move as possible. Create a mood board, have a plan, an idea, finishes selected and furniture options. Just don't choose your paint colours blindly because you will be limiting yourself at the next step, when it's time to shop furniture.
If you are planning on hiring a designer, this is another reason why it is so important to involve your designer as early into the process as possible.
This is a great example; do you think they were able to choose the paint colour before the curtain, fireplace brick and furniture? Definitely not! (for the record, I think a few things are off about this room, but nonetheless a great example)
I'm curious to know if anyone else has struggled with this problem and if you have come up with any other solutions, tips or tricks?
I just really like the colours in this picture below:
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