How to Choose Paint Colors Before You Buy


How to Choose Paint Colors Before You Buy!  No more wasted cans of paint

How to Choose the Perfect Paint Color - before you buy!  and an estate sale furniture transformation!

My sunroom has been transformed with color!

How to Choose the Perfect Paint Color - before you buy!  and an estate sale furniture transformation!

Remember my estate sale find that needed a little makeover?  Well I found out how to choose paint colors and now that find is a beauty.

Mid century dresser - before the fabulous paint makeover!  click to see the after

Wow – what a difference paint makes and thanks to the Sherwin-Williams Color Visualizer, it was so simple to find the perfect shade of blue.

How to Choose the Perfect Paint Color - before you buy!  and an estate sale furniture transformation!
Intense Teal to be exact.

I couldn’t believe how easy it was to choose color online.  With a million and one blue possibilities, it saved me tons of hair pulling.

In fact, if I could marry this perfect shade of blue, we’d be flying to Vegas tonight and hiring an Elvis impersonator to oversee the ceremony.

How to Choose the Perfect Paint Color - before you buy!  and an estate sale furniture transformation!

The details pop with a little gold paint pen.

How to Choose the Perfect Paint Color - before you buy!  and an estate sale furniture transformation!

This room probably has every color in the rainbow but the white trim and dark floors help keep things from looking like 50 clowns emerging from a Volkswagen.

How to Choose the Perfect Paint Color - before you buy!  and an estate sale furniture transformation!

Don’t you find that bringing one new thing into the house makes everything else seem to pale in comparison?

Of course I needed to spice up the rest of the room with some colorful new touches.

My favorite is this vintage school map framing the tv and pillows that tie together all the colors in the room.

How to Choose the Perfect Paint Color - before you buy!  and an estate sale furniture transformation!

I can’t say enough about picking the brains of the paint store employees.  My new BFF Gregory, who works at Sherwin-Williams, gave me lots of tips and tricks to make this makeover a breeze.

Furniture Painting Tips

1) Remove all hardware.

2) Lightly sand the piece (don’t apply heavy pressure) with very fine sandpaper (I used 120 grit and a Ryobi electric sander).

3) Remove dust with a towel and then a tack cloth.

4) Apply one coat of primer (Sherwin-Willliams recommended gray) and let dry for at least one hour.

5) Use the right paint.  I used Sherwin-Williams All Surface Enamel Latex Paint which is durable enough for kitchen cabinets.

6) Apply paint and let dry fully between coats.  My friend Karen said it best with her advice to apply it like nail polish in very thin coats.

7) Sand between coats using a very fine sandpaper if you notice any imperfections (remove dust with tack cloth before painting).

* I applied one coat of primer and three coats of paint.

How to Choose the Perfect Paint Color - before you buy!  and an estate sale furniture transformation!

The media console has a little sister in this colorful artwork with similar golds and blues.

Unique art

School maps never looked this good when I was wearing my polyester uniform and saddle shoes.

Hung behind the tv, it makes the perfect frame.

How to Choose the Perfect Paint Color - before you buy!  and an estate sale furniture transformation!

Florals, solids and stripes all work together when each piece has at least one other color from somewhere else in the room.

How to Choose the Perfect Paint Color - before you buy!  and an estate sale furniture transformation!

Here’s to embracing color and having fun in decorating.

After all, paint is one of the easiest ways to go wild.

How to Choose the Perfect Paint Color - before you buy!  and an estate sale furniture transformation!

Now my estate sale find is a real showstopper who can’t keep the boys from asking her to dance.

I heard she may even fly to Vegas and become a showgirl.  Maybe she can be a bridesmaid at my wedding to Intense Teal.

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  1. I would definitely give our master bedroom a make over. We have several mismatched pieces of furniture that are in need of painting. The Sherwin Williams gift card would help out with that project. Thanks for the opportunity!

  2. Just love this room and all it’s color. how fun. I really like how you hung the map behind the tv..clever. You piece turned out so pretty. I think I would like to give my laundry room so my new color.

  3. How awesome is this? Makes me happy!! My next makeover will probably be my basement/game room so i can DEFINITELY use the $100 gift card!!
    Thanks for sharing and hosting, Kelly!
    xo HEidi

  4. I desperately need to update the upstairs guest bath. My youngest is 26 and it still has ” cute little animals wearing colorful shoes ” wallpaper that has seen better days.

  5. Our classroom (we’re homeschoolers) needs a makeover… it tends to be dark… I love the colors that brighten up your room!

  6. I love it all but I adore the ottoman (bean bag or whatever it’s called!) We are renovating our bathroom at the moment but the room I would make over would be our bedroom. We’ve done almost all or parts of the rest of them!

    Thanks for the giveaway. My husband uses Sherwin Williams in his painting business.

  7. I am making over my sewing room now! This gift card would be perfect and couldn’t come at a better time. I love Sherwin Williams paints!!

  8. Why have I never thought of use the visualizer for painting furniture? … My family room is definitely in need of a makeover! … Love Sherwin Williams paint!

  9. The better question would be which room doesn’t need new paint! 😉 But I think I would start in entry/front hall/staircase if I had to pick just one. Thank you for the chance to enter! 🙂

  10. I would paint a couple of pieces. Our vintage end table and an old desk and chair. Will have to play with the Visualizer!

  11. That visualizer tool is so cool! I am definitely going to have to try it. I LOVE your sunroom and it’s pretty colors. The console turned out amazing. I really need to paint every room in our house, but I would start with the bathroom.

  12. i am currently gutting out a “junk” room to turn into my crafting room, but it hasn’t been as quick and easy as i originally thought. i would like it to have a beachy theme (soft blues with some pinks) and i have found an awesome 4’x3′ beach painting on canvas to hang in there with a few other beachy accessories found along the way with this in mind. the problem is getting rid of all the stuff…..i have disney collectibles (brand new, still in boxes) given to me over the years by people with nowhere to display them and not as much desire anymore now that i am older. they are worth a lot of money but i don’t quite know how to get rid of all the stuff/junk to finish clearing it out to move furniture in.

    i would LOVE to paint the room before filling it back up but i have never done it and it is intimidating. plus i worry about the fumes and stuff with two cats in the house. right now it is beige (like the rest of the house which is only a few years old) but would love it some pastels.

  13. Oh wow! Your color choice is gorgeous Kelly! The room looks so fresh and inviting.

    I’d love to paint my son’s room and give it a super makeover.

  14. We talked a lot this weekend about color changes in our dining room … walls and the table (gulp), so that $100 SW gift card could certainly help with that! Love your fun intense teal and the political map behind the tv is wonderful way to frame the black box with graphic color. Robin

  15. I just finished making over every room in my home, but the spiral staircase, so I guess that would be it by default!

  16. We just completed a total remodel of our home, but I do have a dresser that could use some color since it’s justa plain jane white one now. You are a brave soul. I would be scared to paint with such a bright color. Your room is beautiful.

  17. I love Sherwin Williams, and the guys at my local SW are my work break pals. I would love to obliterate the overly cheerful Yellow walled Great room and replace with a cool grey/white. A gift card would be put to such good use at my local SW. By the way, your console looks perfect, esp. the gold details. What a fab room, and I didn’t see a clown anywhere, not even in the corners.

  18. Goodness, where to start…I have been itching to repaint a few rooms in my house. It’s been 8 years + 2 kids = lots of fingerprints, because they used flat paint before we moved in and we all no how impossible it is clean flat paint! Thing is paint isn’t cheap and winning this gift card would be fabulous, not to mention help me to convinve my husband to repaint 😉
    Thanks so much!
    Rory Reding

  19. What a fun room, I’d love to do my master bedroom, I already have the bedding just need to paint the room and trim!

  20. Love the color choice! What a POP of color. 🙂
    I’m wondering how you put the map up behind the tv. Did you cut out the spot for the tv mounting hardware? I have a junk treasure place near me with about a dozen of those type of schoolroom maps and I’ve been eyeing them for weeks. I may have to copy you!


  21. My girls room needs a makeover badly! I’d love to have some cash to buy the paint with! I will be buying it at Sherwin-Williams regardless but some free paint would make it that much sweeter!

  22. Love it Kelly!!!! It’s perfect for that space, I also love the touch of gold you placed. The map behind the TV is also genius!!!! You rock dear!

  23. My bathroom needs new paint. I love this system to see what colors could be chosen. Thank you.

  24. The map brings back so many memories of school in the 50’s! My summer plans are to re-do my son’s old room as a guest room so the new paint would be perfect. It has dark green paint right now that he painted in high school.

  25. I wouldloveto redo my living room. Every room in this house is the SAME color YELLOW!!!! Id love to win the $100.00 gift card to get me started!! Thanks for the chance..:)

  26. Map behind tv—brilliant! I am always redoing our family room. It never seems to be quite right. Thanks for sharing the color visualizer. I have a feeling I will make it my best friend. I haven’t tried Sherwin Williams paint before but I think I will now.

  27. Your room is gorgeous! I love all the bright colors. My master bedroom needs a complete makeover. We still even have the original carpet of the house (25 years old!) in there. It’s pitiful!

  28. Kitchen…period! Between this and the stove/oven up for grabs, it could be a beautiful start! 🙂 Thanks again!

  29. I would love to redo my front room. The light is always changing and I find it cold looking most of the time.

  30. We have a ton of painting projects to do. I would start with our master bedroom / half bath. Paint gift card would be so appreciated. Thanks for the chance to win.

  31. I’d make over my bonus room which is the last of my home projects for a complete renovation. This would be a nice start!

  32. That dresser is beautiful! The color is perfect for that room. I would love to makeover our master bedroom. It has been last priority for years and years!

  33. Oh, how to choose? Once you start with ONE room, it’s impossible to stop! However, I’ve long wanted to make our master bedroom a refuge and retreat…with periwinkle blues, oranges, and reds. But, the bathroom is also dying to be either pale yellow or melon orange. And the kitchen, with its pink retro tile cabinets, asks daily to be adorned with turquoise walls. What about the living room, you say?! That’s probably the hardest room of all, as we have such a hodgepodge of furniture styles in there. There’s a lot of green and orange in there and I have a bookcase and an end-table that could both use some sprucing up. And THEN…there are the kids’ rooms. Sigh…so, to keep things easy, let’s go back to the master bedroom, with its tranquil periwinkle blue and sunset oranges. Sherwin-Williams, HELP!

  34. In the words of one of our favorite tv personalities….happy, happy,happy! This is a great color.

  35. What a great post. I’ve got a few pieces I have been debating on what color to paint them and this tool will come in handy. If I won the $100 Sherwin Williams gift card I would make over my kitchen/dining room combo. We’re in the process of choosing paint colors now.
    Thanks again for the info…

  36. I’d love to makeover my daughters room. She’s not a little baby anymore, so I’d like something a little bit more kiddish looking. Something that would look good as she grows older.

  37. This site made me think of my daughter and son-in-law who are buying their first home in preparation to starting a family (FINALLY!) 😀 She has already picked out a piece of vintage furniture from a local thrift store that she can’t live without but it does need some TLC. I would love to hand her a $100 gift card to Sherwin Williams and say, “Let’s do this thing!”

  38. We are getting ready to move back into our house after being out of the country for 4 years and will be painting nearly every room in the house!

    I also have furniture that I want to paint (including the kids’ bathroom vanity, it is such a sad piece of the non-hip part of the 60s) and I never thought of using the color visualizer for furniture, either! That is brilliant!

    The room that is most desperate for a makeover is our very Brady den – it has cherry paneled walls, oak flooring and a nasty pinkish brick fireplace, so is basically like being in a cave.

  39. I need to rehab my dinning, living room, and kitchen. Just got to pick the right Sherwin Williams paint for the room.

  40. I’m on the downside of a kitchen remodel (hadn’t been remodeled since the 70’s, ugh!)and since the dining room is open to the kitchen, it’s next on the agenda! We removed a bar between the dining room and kitchen, so it has two entrances wide open to the dining room so it will have to blend with the kitchen. The two entrances are joined by a column so that it gives the appearance of a double arch kind of thingie. yeah. The walls are old heart pine which I painted (I know, I know)after we had a fire one Christmas involving a candle. Don’t ask. So we have two walls that are sheet rock and two that are painted heart pine in the dining room. We have old cruddy vinyl floors which we want to replace with hardwood or Pergo. Since this will most likely be the last time I get to do this, I want to do it right the first time! Sherwin Williams has always been number 1 in my book~~

  41. The bathroom needs a makeover! It is old fashioned and looks messy because of it.


  42. We are finishing out our basement so we have 2100 sqft of space to paint out. one of which is our playroom.

  43. I’d love to redecorate my daughter’s room and help her get involved in some of the decorating decisions. She’s only 5 but it would be fun to see what she came up with. I love that bright cabinet piece! So nice!

  44. I would love to re-do my bedroom. I have never had a room that was all made up. We have a mismatch furniture and all white walls. Yes, we own our own home and have white walls. I never thought I would be THAT person.

  45. For a chance to win a $100 Sherwin-Williams gift card, share in the comments below what room you would like to makeover in your home? my dream would be to make over the kids room star95011atyahoodotcom

  46. Making over my kitchen would rock! It needs painted and the cabinets need painted too because they look so very 1980s and not in a good way! Need new counter tops too!

  47. I LOVE the color that you chose– I’m so impressed that you can repurpose old furniture to make it fresh!

    I’d use the Sherwin Williams gift card to repaint my downstairs powder room in wide horizontal stripes. I’ve been wanting to do it since we moved in 2 years ago, and this might be the inspiration I need!

  48. I would give my L/R, D/R, kitchen combo a face lift. It is Baby Chick Yellow of all things! Cheery, but I’m tired of it. I’d like a warmer neutral combo.

  49. I would love to make over my living room. We were able to make over our toddler’s room before we moved into our new house, but we didn’t have the extra money to paint the living room, or our bedroom.

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