Broad strokes

Colour con­sul­tant Karen Peters shares tips on trans­form­ing your home with paint.

The Coast - Homes Halifax - - Expert Advice - BY MOR­GAN MULLIN

Just how much can a few licks of paint change a space? When Karen Peters, a colour con­sul­tant and paint ex­pert be­hind the com­pany Paint Next, turned a client’s pow­der room from ba­sic cream to light pink, the an­swer was ob­vi­ous: It can be to­tally trans­for­ma­tive.

That rosy hue (Benjamin Moore’s Teacup Pink, to be ex­act) added a soft glow to the room. “It’s such a good colour for a morn­ing makeup rou­tine,” Peters says. Even if pink makes you think more “princess” than “paintable,” she adds that in­clud­ing any shade to your space can have just as much im­pact. “Colours re­ally change the over­all feel­ing.”

Here, she shares tips to make you kiss builder’s beige good­bye—and maybe even paint the rain­bow.

On get­ting started

“Part of what I do is try to help some­one nar­row down the colour choices— you know, there are thou­sands—and in­te­grate those into the home’s ex­ist­ing el­e­ments. What kind of mood are you try­ing to cre­ate? What makes you feel good? A re­ally good way to or­ga­nize your ideas is to do a mood board, ei­ther some­thing like Pin­ter­est or a lit­eral cut-and-paste—but in­clude pho­tos of what’s al­ready in your house.”

On ty­ing the room to­gether

“If you have two colours and you don’t know how to make them work and you have an an­chor—a piece of art­work or printed fab­ric—it jus­ti­fies the choice.” Once, while ren­o­vat­ing a cabin, soonto-be-re­placed floor­ing served as such in­spi­ra­tion for Peters: “It was a great pat­tern, so I just cut up this ’60s linoleum, and framed it on the wall. Peo­ple al­ways ask where I got it.”

How to avoid re­gret­table re­sults

“Paint a test swatch on the wall so you can live with the colour a bit and see it in dif­fer­ent lights,” Peters sug­gests. And if you’re re­ally colour­shy? “A trend I’m lov­ing right now is all-white walls with re­ally colour­ful ac­ces­sories.”

If you do de­cide to colour your world

“En­suites and laun­dry rooms are fun places to ex­per­i­ment with colour. I call those lit­tle jew­ellery boxes. But if you want to paint your liv­ing room walls candy ap­ple green, go to the paint store and ask for a dif­fused shade. It makes the colour more live­able.”

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