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Selecting a Paint Palette

Choosing the correct shade of paint for a wall, room or item of furniture can be a daunting and confusing exercise. We asked interior designer and design trend expert, Michelle Trimborn from Design Quarters for her advice:

  • Light colours reflect light and make a space look bigger, while dark colours absorb light and make a space look smaller.
  • In addition, high gloss finishes reflect light and make the space look bigger. Matt or textured finishes absorb light and make spaces look smaller.
  • If you want a square room to look rectangular, paint two facing walls light and two facing walls dark. If you want to make a very tall space look shorter, then split the height of the room with two different colours of paint. The contrast does not have to be great. Your eye automatically reads the slightly darker colour’s boundary at the picture rail as the new ceiling height.
  • In complete contrast, if a small room is to be utilised primarily at night with very dim lighting, it can be painted a very dark colour. This makes it difficult to perceive where the walls are. The space will feel cosy and the visual trick will make the mind believe there is more depth.
  • One last guideline: colour is emotional and very subjective. Listen to your heart.
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