Choosing Paint Colours – Avoid These 5 Top Mistakes

When deciding to have your home repainted, the first thing we tend to think about is colour. There are two main reactions people tend to have…
1. It’s just paint, choose whatever colour, it doesn’t matter….
2. Oh my god, there are 1000 different colours, how am I ever going to decide…
While there is definitely some importance behind choosing the right paint colours for your home, it doesn’t have to be a crippling decision. We have put together the top 5 mistakes made when choosing paint colours, to help guide you in the right direction and simplify the colour picking experience.

Mistake 5 – Choosing colours in a store

The first place to start is in a paint store. With a wall full of colour cards and colour booklets, this is where you can get your creative juices flowing and start coming up with some ideas. But don’t make the mistake of deciding in store. Colour will look very different in different environments. Grab some sample pots or some colour cards and take them home. Test them in different spots around the house to make sure the colour will look good in your environment.


Mistake 4 – Using someone else’s colour scheme

Just because a colour scheme looked good on tv or in your mate’s house doesn’t mean it will look good in yours. Again, test the colours in your home and then make a decision.

Mistake 3 – Picking colours individually

When choosing multiple colours a good rule of thumb is to use the 60-30-10 rule. 60% of the total painted area should be the main colour, 30% secondary colour and 10% accent colour. But before making a decision, know that some colours look good individually but not as a group, so make sure to group the colours together first. You can do this by overlapping some colour cards or testing some samples on a wall.


Mistake 2 – Choosing interior colours for exterior application

Not all colours are created equal, some will not hold up to the blazing UV from the Australian sun. Tinters are added to paint to create different colours. Some of these tints are not lightfast, which means they are not rated to withstand direct sunlight. If these tints are used for exterior application, the paint will rapidly deteriorate and will need to be overcoated in a short period of time. Check the back of the colour cards to see if the colour is exterior rated.


Mistake 1 – Mixing warm and cool colours together

The #1 mistake we see as painting contractors on the Gold Coast is the mixing of warm and cool colours. But what makes a colour warm or cool and why can’t they be mixed?
Warm colours are colours that have warmer tones such as red, orange, yellow and cream.
Cool colours are the opposite, having tones such as blue, green and purple. ALL colours sway cooler or warmer, even white!

For the most part, colour schemes should either be made up of warm or cool tones. Mixing these together creates a sense of conflict and imbalance in the colour scheme which is generally not aesthetically pleasing.

A good way to work out if the colour is warm or cool is to hold a white piece of paper against the colour. Comparing to a pure white piece of paper will make the undertones of the colour more obvious.

So there you have it the top 5 mistakes to avoid when choosing paint colours. We hope this was insightful and if you know someone who is looking to have repainting works done to their home or property on the Gold Coast, we’d be happy to see if we can help!

Mitchel Kelly
Sterling Coating’s Founder

In 2008, I started a school-based apprenticeship at 15 years old. After my first day on the job, I knew I wanted to become a professional painter and decided to pursue a full-time apprenticeship a week later.

Working in construction at 16 years old I had to learn fast to keep up with the large, experienced work crew.

After my first year I moved to a new employer who worked on the largest scale projects including the world class Soul building in Surfers Paradise, the Gold Coast University Hospital and the Southport Central Towers. Working in this environment I honed my painting and decorating skills working on multimillion dollar apartments. I also had incredible exposure to great leadership and was able to acquire practical skills as a leading hand on quite a few major government jobs.

Not long after having the opportunity at leading hand I was promoted to site foreman just before I had finished my apprenticeship at age 19. Managing teams of painters on projects: schools, hospitals and army barracks, I learned the importance of project management to ensure the highest standards and on time completion of jobs for the clients.

I became totally enthralled with business and delivering incredible service through a company. After some intensive research I managed to identify a gap in the Gold Coast painting market and decided to open a company. In 2013 I started what has now grow into Sterling Coating; a full home transformation solution. From colour scheme concepts, digital paint jobs, painting application and multiple painting products. We’ve built a team of paint applicators and Sterling Coating is ready to transform the many unique homes of the Gold Coast.