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What is Interior Paint Design?

Article Details
  • Written By: Jessica Ellis
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 10 June 2018
  • Copyright Protected:
    2003-2018
    Conjecture Corporation
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Making a room look either cool and airy or warm and intimate can be aided by interior paint design. This subfield of interior design requires an in-depth knowledge of colors, tones, and how a shade affects a space. Yet even a beginner can exercise good interior paint design skills simply by understanding his or her own preferences and researching proper techniques.

Many studies have shown that color, shade, and tone have the ability to create illusions or impart a mood. In general, lighter colors will give a sense of space, while darker colors can make a room seem cozier. Cool tones tend can make a room give the illusion of being cooler in temperature, while warm tones do the opposite.

Before tackling colors, it is important to examine the size, shape, contents, and function of the rooms to be painted. If a room is already spacious or relatively empty, a light color can make it appear blank and lifeless. If furnishings have pale, cool-toned fabrics, painting the room a warm color might make it feel confused. Interior paint design should promote harmony in the room by working with the available space and existing features.

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What often separates professional interior paint design from amateur painting is detail and contrast. Detail can include marble staining, sponging, and textured finishes. Contrast involves using several coordinated shades of paint to create a nuanced look. Both of these can easily be done by amateur painters, although it may be wise to ask for tips and advice on finishing techniques while at the paint store. Many stores will even do sample demonstrations of different finishes to help customers get a better idea of the finished product.

Interior paint design must also take into consideration the durability or look of the paint used. Flat paint is best for ceilings and to cover flaws, but does not stand up well to high amounts of traffic or wear. Satin paints, also called eggshell, can emphasize molding details and can take hard use, but will also make wall chips or dents jump out. High gloss paint works well as a contrasting element and can be used to accentuate window frames, doorways, and any other element that should stand out from the walls.

Personal taste is a major part of interior paint design. No matter how good a professional decorator thinks mustard yellow would look on the study walls, if the homeowner hates yellow, it is a bad choice. Pick up a few home decor or architectural designs to help refine ideas about what colors and combinations look good in different rooms. A person might love avocado green in the kitchen but hate it in a bedroom, or dream of a ocean blue bathroom but despise blue in the kitchen. If a person doesn't like the color of a room, they will probably want to spend less time in it.

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