Favorite Paints: Our Guide For Your Whole Home

Decorating Ideas | Home Improvement

Today I’m sharing my paint color palette for our homes, including photos and links to projects in BOTH houses. Paint is a tough decision for a lot of people. Soon I’ll be releasing a paint guide that you can print and take with you to the hardware store to help you choose the right paint for your home projects. Enjoy the full tour of both homes here.

Interior Paint Colors in Our Last House

Modern Farmhouse ~ Soothing Undertones ~ Light Against Dark

Interior Paint Swatches by SnazzyLittleThings

The color palette:

The Esquire was the name of the floor plan for our previous house. Every room and the “before” photos can be enjoyed in our house tour. It was a labor of love, but we learned a lot about painting an open concept house. We experimented with different types of paint and how the paint “behaves” in certain situations. We made the mistakes so you don’t have to!

DIY: Glossy Black Front Door by SnazzyLittleThings.com

Black Door Paint in The Esquire:

Rustoleum Professional High Performance Enamel: In our first house, the exterior of our door was a high gloss black finish. Black front doors are so classic, read my post about black front doors and what paint I used here. I loved it, and never had to repaint it after several years.

Paint Colors Main Floor:

Discontinued, but this was on the can:

Lowes #0633 330-695-935 Tinter B
3/7/12 Valspar, Gallon Size, SR214, Moonlight Beach, Signature, Interior Satin Base 4
101-2Y, 107-2Y10, 109-14, 113-7Y28

Tour the family room here.

Family Room Color Discontinued Valspar Moonlight Beach

I loved this color! The entire first floor was painted primarily in Valspar, Moonlight Beach — but buyer beware!! Lowe’s no longer carries it by name. Use the number I gave you above.

I love any hue with cooler undertones. For me, This color has a very “Zen” feeling to it, and while it’s mostly a taupe, I swear I remember seeing blue undertones being added as they mixed the paint. This color was a last minute decision. I walked into Lowe’s, my original intention was to opt for  a safe choice…which was a lighter, non-dramatic color. But something about this darker hue was very comforting, so I went for it! Depending on how the light plays, the main living area always seems to look different. Most days it’s a taupe-grey. But if the sun is shining directly in the foyer, it can look warmer and more brown on other days:

DIY Wainscoting

  • We just opted for a pure white paint and trim latex readily available at the hardware store. No mixing needed.
  • Floors: Pergo Molasses Maple

Read our tutorial for DIY wainscoting here.

Painting Stair Railings:

“Fired Earth” by Valspar with white trim paint on spindles

The trick: Prime first. 1 Coat of “Fired Earth” glossy. 2 Coats of poly. At first, I was considering black for our railing but it looked way too harsh. Then I found Fired Earth which provided just enough brown undertones to soften the look. I bought a high-gloss finish for this project which glides right on. The wainscoting is a pure white in a paint specifically made for trim which comes in a satin sheen — a slight gloss makes it easier to keep clean but I still find I need to touch it up every year.

Read about the stair railing paint project here.

Industrial Farmhouse Laundry Room Makeover

Paint Colors in Laundry Room

Cabinets: “Iron Gate” by Heirloom Traditions

Walls: “Pegasus” by Olympic painted on beadboard paneling

Wood Counter Top: Oak Plywood Stained with “Early American” by Varathane

Floors: Pergo Molasses Maple

Read about the laundry room project here.

Modern Farmhouse Kitchen Holidays 2107 Stenciled Backsplash

Deep Grain Oak Cabinets Painted Bright White

Painted Cabinet Process: Sanded, primed with Kilz. DecoArt Satin Enamels (with a sprayer). See the tutorial here.

Backsplash: Fired Earth High Gloss by Valspar. See the tutorial here.

Read about ALL of our kitchen projects! Lots of lessons learned!

Paint Colors on Family Room Feature Wall

  • Grey Ghost by Olympic Paint + Stain
  • Pegasus by Olympic Paint + Stain

To break up the monotony of the dark walls in our main living area, we added this feature wall in the family room. We painted it Grey Ghost. I liked how it looked against the adjacent walls. We painted the trim in Pegasus which looks like a pure white when paired with Grey Ghost.

See the family room feature wall project here.

Spring Sunroom Tour Looking Towards Deck

Paint Colors in Sunroom

  • Sunroom Walls:  Benjamin Moore, Kendall Charcoal (see the post)
  • DIY Wooden Beams:  Dark Walnut Stain by Varathane (see the post)

I didn’t get our sunroom quite right the first time around. It was painted a pale beige. I was always very sensitive to the “vibe” against the Moonlight Beach. While they didn’t clash, they didn’t complement each other perfectly, either. I wanted something a little more bold and dramatic. And this new, bolder Kendall Charcoal from Benjamin Moore definitely offered the cooler undertones that I crave.  

See the sunroom evolve over the years in these posts.

Office / Dining Room

Austrian Ice” Olympic Paint + Stain.

I find grey-blues very soothing and a perfect complement to the darker, bolder colors in the rest of the house. This was painted years ago, and again the original paint color is no longer and I can’t find the original paint can. But this one is very close.

Tour the office / dining room here.

Paint Colors in Basement

Coming soon! Tour the basement here. I am asked quite often, and all I can offer are photos of the paint can covers. I totally forgot to write the names of them down. I will be adding these colors in a printable very soon.

paint colors in my daughter’s bedroom

Wall Paint: Hyacinth by Behr, Found at Home Depot

See her teen bedroom remodel here.

Tween Girl ChalkBoard Wall

Chalkboard wall

Coming soon, read about her large-scale chalkboard wall project here.

NEW House Paint Colors

Whites ~ Woods ~ Gray-Green Undertones ~ French Inspired

We moved into the Picket Fence house in August 2018. This time we chose to go lighter and brighter at a time when Instagram designers seem to be embracing dark walls again. (I always seem to be off-trend!) Lighter paint on the walls paired with darker furniture to add contrast and depth. Gray-green undertones seems to be the direction we are going.

70 dollar thrifted chandelier in dinette

Paint Color Main Floor:

“Simply White” by Benjamin Moore is what we chose for our first floor in the new house.

Tour the Picket Fence house here.

Dark Moody Mantel Makeover by Snazzy Little Things

Paint Color Fireplace Mantel:

Garden Trowel” by Magnolia

(you can purchase it here) and you can see the before and after of the mantel transformation here.

formal dining room with chandelier and thrifted table

Paint Color in Dining Room

Kendall Charcoal” by Benjamin Moore

This color was decided after we finished our foyer trim upgrade and paint project so we just kept going and painted this room too.

Master Bedroom Wall Color Update

Paint Colors Master Bedroom Feature Wall

“Pond Stone” found at Ace Hardware by Magnolia. Read the post here. This room is a work in progress.

New Gray Paint in the Kitchen After

$95 Kitchen Remodel with Paint

“Galveston Gray” – this is a special request at Lowe’s. I had this mixed in a tintable enamel made by Valspar.

This time we wanted to choose our own paint colors for the cabinets. This popular makeover all happened with a can of Valspar Cabinet Enamels paint. I had Lowe’s tint it using the formula for “Galveston Gray” by Benjamin Moore. The trick: Clean. Light sanding. PRIME. Have water on-hand…lots of thin layers. No top coat needed. Do it right and you’ll be the next person giving it a good review.

See the kitchen transformation here.

Guest Bedroom Reveal Up Close of Tray BHG Magazine-2

Paint Colors in Guest Bedroom

Wall Paint: “Kendall Charcoal” by Benjamin Moore

We totally transformed this room for around $500 and created a full guest suite in our basement using existing furniture and a few new purchases.

See the guest suite transformation here.

Patriotic Front Porch with Americana Buntings

Black Door Paint:

“Iron Gate” by Heirloom Traditions

All of our interior doors are also painted this color. A bonding chalk paint – without the chalky finish. Dries a smooth matte. You can purchase it on Amazon.

Tour the porch here.

Interior Paint Project Black or White Doors

Black Interior Doors

“Iron Gate” by Heirloom Traditions

After learning the hard way, this is my go-to black paint. In this photo I’m correcting a past mistake (used oil based and it was a mess!) Heirloom Traditions goes on smooth and has a pretty matte finish without the chalky feel. And it’s easy to clean with a microfiber cloth.

Paints & Sheens (Our Favorites):

  • Walls: We typically choose a washable matte latex paint for main living areas. We avoid any gloss sheen on walls. The color remains truer this way.
  • Bathroom Walls: A washable satin, light sheen but easy to clean.
  • Stair Railings: Prime first. Followed by 2 coats of our color choice in a glossy latex. Followed by 2-3 coats of a polyurethane to prevent chipping.
  • Trim: 2 coats of a bright white in a latex, semi-gloss finish. No topcoat.
  • White Cabinets: Clean, sand, prime. If a deep grain, we use a grain filler. Lightly Sand. Followed by 2 coats of a water based enamel (water based is typically non-yellowing). No top coat needed for a hard drying enamel.
  • Cabinetry with Color: Water based enamel, since it’s a color it could be water based or oil. Oil can yellow so it depend on the hue.
  • Topcoat: Polyurethane is used on high traffic areas like railings. I avoid top coats on cabinets and it’s not necessary if you use enamel which dries hard.

If you’re still trying to figure out your style or you color palette, read my post “7 Tips: How to Find Your Decorating Style”. Choosing color is a big decision. I’ve made some wrong turns in the past — sometimes a color looks great in one season, but not in another. How a paint color looks in your home really can depend not only on the time of day, your physical location and the time of year, too!  

What are your favorite paint colors these days? I’ll be sharing my printable paint guide very soon! Stay tuned!

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