By: Megan Martin
When it comes to home design and decor, few things have as strong a visual impact as paint colour. Ask any professionals and they’ll likely all agree that paint colour can change the overall look and mood of any space.
In fact, whether you’re looking to create a warm dramatic effect or a cool calming appeal, the paint you choose makes all the difference. That’s why it’s crucial to think through the colours you select for your home by exploring current trends, paying attention to what’s going to work best with your existing home accents, and consulting an expert or two.
“Paint colours can breathe life and change the mood in any room and help your furniture, art and belongings stand out and look better,” said Andre Zylinski, owner and president of Paintologists. “Painting your home is like the icing on the cake; a good quality job shows and puts more value into your home. And with the right colour matching your taste, you’ll feel good and more comfortable in your space.”
A paint job can truly bring your existing belongings back to life from a design perspective. That’s why, when choosing your perfect hue, you should consider existing elements in your room such as floor colouring and any decorative items you’d like to keep in that space — rugs, curtains, accents, and so on.
“Lighting also plays a factor when choosing the right paint colour,” said Carmen Roy, interior design specialist. “Some paint colours absorb a lot of light, others reflect it, and many people don’t realize that paint colours have undertones to them as well.”
A grey paint, for example, may have a purple or green undertone to it that will be enhanced once it’s on the wall or paired with certain hues in your space.
“So before investing and purchasing your paint and hiring a painter, I highly recommend consulting with a professional decorator or designer who has studied colour,” she said.
More and more, homeowners are realizing just how important paint colour is to the overall look and feel of their home.
“With so many decorating shows and decorating apps available, people are exploring possibilities and getting ideas for their space,” Roy said. “It’s a good way for me to be guided on what their preferences are. My job is then to find the right tone with the right undertones, which can be a tricky process for someone who hasn’t studied colour.”
With a ton of inspiration available, people are becoming more involved in the overall design and decorating process.
“I think sites like Pinterest and Houzz really open people up to what’s possible,” said Derek Stefanuk, owner of Atelier Chroma. “Not only are people paying more attention, we’re also seeing people making bolder decisions and taking more risks with their decisions.
“A decade ago, most people would just paint their house taupe and that would be that. Nowadays, we see a lot of interesting designs, textures, colours and surfaces.”
In terms of current trends, the range of what’s popular is quite broad, meaning there’s something going on right now for everyone’s taste.
“Natural, earthy tones are on the top of the list for 2019 and it’s all about bringing the outdoors in,” Roy said. “These hues are calming and quite welcoming.”
Colours such as mushroom, hazelnut, dark greens, mustard and, of course, pewter are a few examples. If you’re into deep saturated colours, think charcoal and navy blues — and if you’re looking for something softer then you’ll be happy to know muted pastels in pinks, blues and greens are trendy.
Accent colours against a neutral backdrop are quite popular as well.
“I would say the biggest trends in paint colours are to add very rich and deep accent colours — like blacks and forest greens, for example,” Stefanuk said.
“I would say, overall, it’s more of a striking look that we’re seeing, where there are a lot of pale tones or even just all whites and then some really rich dark tones that make a statement.”
When it comes to selecting paint experts for your home project, you’d be advised to choose carefully. In fact, there are several factors to consider when hiring painters.
“Do the research beforehand and really have a clear idea of what you want before you pick up the phone and call a painter,” Stefanuk said. “The best painters are always busy, so you will want to book them at least one to two months in advance.”
It’s important to inquire about the team size they’ll be using, as well as any licensing they have.
“You should seek out a professional painting contractor with a team of experienced painters who do this full-time for a living,” Zylinski said.
“If it’s a small job, a one-man team is OK, but larger interior jobs require two to three men — and it can take two to three weeks to paint a full house properly, with the basement.”
A lot of that time is spent on preparation work, which is critical to any proper paint job, he added.
“The most important part of a quality job is proper preparation with repairing cracks and minor defects, caulking cracks, pole sanding all surfaces — sanding trim, doors and even between coats if you have the budget,” Zylinski said. “Be careful of low prices, too; many painters cut out a lot of the prep work and have cheap inexperienced painters to paint your home. It will look OK but shows in the long run and may need to be repainted in a few years.”
The same can be said of quality paints and supplies. “A pro will know the best ones to use,” Zylinski said. “The amateurs don’t really know and will use what you want. That can be OK, but it’s usually a sign that they lack the experience and knowledge in the trade.”
And as with any home improvement job, ensuring your professionals are licensed is imperative.
“It’s always best to hire a painting company that has an RBQ licence and is fully insured and bonded,” Zylinski said. “You are protected in case of accidents and have legal recourse if anything goes wrong.”
All that said, deciding to paint your home is a wonderful and cost-effective way to update your space.
“I think that design is really a fun way for people to express who they are and create an environment that communicates certain moods or lifestyles,” Stefanuk said. “I think that design used to really intimidate a lot of people, so it’s nice to see so many homeowners becoming more interested in it.”