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How to choose a color palette for your home

How to... pick a color palette

Choosing a color palette for your home can be a huge undertaking. While painting a room a certain color is never permanent, it’s a lot of hard work that can help create the room of your dreams, or be a big, unsightly mistake. Here are a few tips and tricks that will turn your space from bland to fab.

How to... pick a color paletteStep 1: Take a look at your space.

Whether you're planning to decorate your entire house or just one room, taking a look at what your space has to offer can give you insight into what paints to choose. In general, dark colors make a room look smaller, while light colors make it look larger -- a little like dressing yourself in black to look thinner. That's not to say you can't use dark colors in small rooms, but maybe painting just one wall that wacky shade of red would be better than doing the whole room.

Step 2: Look outward.

Scour home magazines and creative decorating websites to find the look you love. Sure, your room will be entirely unique, but finding decorative inspiration will help narrow down your focus into real, solid, practical ideas. Cut out or print the designs you like best, and bring them to home furnishing and hardware stores to maintain your vision.

Step 3: Look inward.

Hold off on making major paint decisions until you decide on a theme for the room. A clear idea of what you want to do with the space can help dictate the color of the walls. Going with a bohemian-chic vibe? Perhaps a light brown is in order. If you're going for an Indian-inspired look, rich jewel colors will help achieve it. Use your personality; the room is your canvas. Close your eyes and visualize your ideal space, then work from there.

Step 4: Bold or subdued?

Colors opposite of each other on the color wheel -- or the few colors closest to your base color -- work best together. Go bold by beginning with a color that pops on the wheel, or go with a monochromatic color scheme. If your color of choice is a deep burgundy, then browns, purples and mauves will complement your vision, all while looking subdued and mature.

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For more info on this topic...For more decorating ideas, check out:
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