Choosing a paint color - Why must it be so frustrating!?

So, I have recently painted our living/dining room.
Now, I could just show you what it looks like and say, "look! I painted our walls a new color!" And you may think, "Wow! that girl just picks a color and goes for it!"
Ha Ha Ha!
But that is SO not the case. 
Sure, painting the walls is the easy part... 
but choosing the color - now that is where my frustrations lye.
I put so much time and energy into choosing a paint color.
Here, let me show you my process;
I hope you have your coffee in hand, because this is a long one.

Now lets start at the beginning......The very beginning!
This is what the living room looked like when we bought the house a couple of years ago.
Lots of Tan!
 I chose a few color samples to pick from and shared them in a post here.  
Many of you agreed that Valspar-Sidewalk was the best choice.
And it looked beautiful on the walls.

Well, not too long ago, I decided that I wanted to paint all of the trim a bright white.  
As you can see from the below picture it was actually a light cream color before.
It was a lot of work, but I was so happy with the results.
Although, painting the trim white totally changed the look of the paint color on the walls. 
They went from a soft gray-blue to a bland cement color. 

I thought about painting them Benjamin Moore - Gray lake. Which is such a pretty color, but then I decided I wanted a color that would make the molding stand out more.
After staring at a million paint chips, I decided to stay with a blue-gray color and found some from True Value that I really liked . 
 Then I could use a darker gray as an accent color, perhaps on a piece of furniture, or my front door....yes! the one I just painted bright blue.
So I went to Lowes and had them mix up some samples.
I came home and immediately started painting squares Everywhere!
Then that evening I was watching the movie, Blended, and Drew Barrymore had brightly colored walls in her cute little house. I was inspired!
The next morning I started going through all of my sample chips looking for brighter colors,
which I then added to the mix.
My husband will give me his advice if I ask, but otherwise doesn't give too much 
thought about paint; which is actually really helpful.
He suggested that I stay away from the bright greens.
His top pick was the True Value color, Old fashioned.
So I painted a bigger section in that color.
I was also leaning heavy on another True Value color, Powder Gray. So I painted a section of the wall in that color as well. 
I know they look pretty similar.
I chose to go with my husbands opinion, and plus, the 'Old Fashioned' had the same blue tones that are in a bunch of my pillows and other decor.
 I tend to lean in that color direction when buying new things for our home.

SO, I went back to Lowes and picked up a gallon of the 'Old Fashioned'.
 But as you can see, the color was off!
Why was the sample a true match, but the gallon size was not??
So I had a decision to make:  
1. Go back to Lowes and have them re-mix it, but would they even be able to match it?  
2. Go to True Value and have them mix it- since it is a True Value color after all.
Or 3. Go with Valspar, 'Seashore Fog', the color we used in our master bathroom, which is actually pretty close to 'Old Fashioned'. However, I would still have to buy more of that paint.
 Do you have this much trouble with choosing a paint color 
or is it just me?

In the end, I decided to just go with the color I was given.
Which was probably the best choice of all! I even like it next to the blue door.

It has just a touch of the Drew Barrymore brightness that inspired me.
And there you have it, this is the way I choose a paint color!
Next up... painting the ceiling!
I will share more once I get the room all put back together.

What are your thoughts?
Do you think I am making a good choice?
Either way, knowing me, I will probably re-paint it in a year or so.....
and start the whole paint color process over again
Thank you for stopping by,



  1. Looks great! You're not took me no less than a year to find a creamy white for my kitchen cabinets!

  2. It truly is so much harder than it looks. I think we make it hard by giving ourselves so many choices and then it can change so much as the light changes in the day. I love all the colors you no mistakes..just choices

  3. Ooh, I looove it!! Such a pretty color! It looks great with all the white trim!

  4. When I saw the sample section and the gallon section together, I thought, "Whoa!, that is not the same at all (and I had kind of the liked the sample from all the other choices!!). However, when you got the paint all on the walls and the sofa next to it (and your lovely door) I thought, "Perfect". I love it!!!! I think it was a happy accident!!! :) Nancy (from TN)

  5. On my goodness, the end result is the best! Who woulda thought after ALL that, heheh.

  6. Just beautiful - amazing how once the entire room was painted the color appears to be the perfect choice! Oh, how I sympathize with you when it comes to choosing paint. It has been over a year and I still have not chosen a gray paint for my kitchen! I must have painted over 50 samples so far on the walls, and every time I think I found the perfect gray, I start to hate it after a few days. Problem is with the natural light, it drastically changes the color on each of the walls. Oh well, eventually I will just go for it.

  7. What kind of paint did you buy? (Flat, semi-gloss...)

  8. I love the blue! I actually searched out this post after seeing your post about the canvas art in your entry on Pinterest... all because of the beautiful blue walls! :) But now I'm wondering if I would even be able to go buy this color. Hmm... Does the gallon color match the paint chip? Or did the sample match it? I'm sure I would have to find something slightly different anyway. I've never had much luck with using a color that looked good in someone else's house. There's always something different about the lighting in my house that throws it off a bit, and I have to start searching the paint chips again. :) Anyway, I LOVE how it turned out for you! Beautiful.

  9. I am with you on this, finding the perfect color is much harder than it sounds. I used to go for solid white but now I prefer a more cream type of color. There are just so many varieties out there though, you've done a fantastic job managing to find the right shade for your home. I usually try lots of samples!

    Richmond Gordon @ CertaPro Painters

  10. Awesome ideas! I love them and its perfect for my condo in Makati. Thank you very much for sharing these wonderful and creative ideas.


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