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How to pick the perfect colours for your paint job

 Q. I am a novice looking to paint the interior of my home. Can you give me some advice on colour schemes and how to get started?

 A. Painting the interior of your home can be an extremely rewarding exercise. In embarking on this kind of project you have the opportunity to change the entire look and feel of each room, the perspective of each area and influence the general mood of its occupants. No mean feat for a few cans of paint!
The first thing that we would recommend is that you determine the various colour schemes of the rooms to be painted. You can do this through an interior designer or colour consultant or by yourself if you have a good eye. Regardless of which route you go down there are a few aspects that I would suggest you consider prior to getting started.
Never, ever paint a room without applying a sample of the paint to an area of the room first.
Some colours just go together, others clash. This can be trial and error. To be safe remember that like colours go well together. Reds go with other shades of red, greens go well with other shades of green.
This can often extend to similar colours complementing each other for instance greens with yellows.
A colour scheme can effect the perspective of a room. For example dark colours in a small room, such as a bathroom or study, can create a cramped feeling and make the room appear smaller than it actually is. Light, bright colours can make it feel more inviting.
When trying to create a mood take the example of yellow which is considered as being a bright, warm and cheerful colour, while blues are considered restful and cool.
There are numerous books and websites where you can get advice on this aspect of colour schemes.
Generally a room has one dominant colour with the option of having complementary subordinate ones. Remember to consider furnishing and fittings in any colour scheme that you choose.
From a project perspective undertaking the painting requires a whole column to itself. Your key to a successful job will be in your preparation. For those who do not want to go down this road, hire a professional painting contractor.
Once you have chosen your preferred colours you will need to pick your paint type. These vary from water-based to enamel. Then you will need to measure your paint area to see how much paint you require and remember when calculating surface areas to deduct for windows etc.
It is essential that the surface to be painted is smooth. Make sure you fill any blemishes with interior filler. If the surface is already painted then you will need to make a call as to whether you need to strip it.
If painting on to plaster then sand it and apply undercoat before applying paint.
To check out appropriate colours with which to create a mood, or to complement each other, or to get free quotes from a paining contractor visit the painting section and colour wheel on

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