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  • The Wayson Group

How to Not Regret the Paint Color You Choose

Updated: 4 days ago

The secret? It’s all about the lighting. Here’s how to get it right.




Well that was a total waste. That Robin’s Egg Blue you picked for your entryway now looks like the color of that (really cheap) beach hotel room back in your spring break days.

Kind of makes you feel sick.

Not at all what you envisioned.

“People have to understand that the color of an object won’t look the same 24 hours a day,” says lighting designer Joseph Rey-Barreau. “I just had bamboo flooring installed throughout my house, and during the day it looks totally different than it looks at night.” The way we “see” color primarily depends on two things: 1. The light that an object absorbs. Black absorbs all colors; white absorbs none; blue absorbs red. 2. How the light source works. Natural light (sunlight) changes throughout the day and is affected by a room’s location. Artificial light changes with the type of bulb you use.

Here's how to figure out how lighting will affect your paint color choices before you plunk down cash for the paint:

How Sunlight Affects Colors

As the amount and angle of the sun changes, so will your room colors. “Natural light should always be considered when choosing color for a space,” says Sarah Cole of the Farrow & Ball paint company. North-facing rooms: Light in these rooms is cool and bluish. Bolder colors show up better than muted colors; lighter colors will look subdued. “Use strong colors and embrace what nature has given,” says Cole. South-facing rooms: Lots of high-in-the-sky light brings out the best in cool and warm colors. Dark colors will look brighter; lighter colors will virtually glow. East-facing rooms: East light is warm and yellowy before noon, then turns bluer later in the day. These are great rooms for reds, oranges and yellows. West-facing rooms: Evening light in these rooms is beautiful and warm, while scant morning light can produce shadows and make colors look dull.

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