Paint By Mood: The Best Colour Ideas For Conveying Different Emotions

March 24, 2015

The easiest way to breathe new life into a room is to give it a fresh coat of paint. But when it comes to figuring out which colour to choose, paying attention to the mood you want to convey in a room is especially important. Whether you want your room to be cozy, calming or inspiring, there’s a paint colour out there that will help you convey your desired emotion.  

We caught up with colour expert Sharon Grech from Benjamin Moore to learn what’s hot and trendy in paint colours right now.

CS: What role does colour play in establishing the mood of a room?

SG: Colour is one of the main players in establishing mood in a room.  The walls often take up the largest amount of visual space; therefore can really set the tone.  In general, colours that are clearer, or higher on the chromatic scale, tend to feel more exciting and bring a youthful energy to a space especially when combined with white and pale grey.  These colours are best used in small amounts or as accents.

Lower chromatic colours, or colours that appear muted, tend to feel more cozy, relaxed and, when combined with the right mix of finishes and materials, can be made to feel more sophisticated.  In general, cooler colours are more fresh and invigorating, where warmer hues feel cozy.

CS: When do you know it’s time to paint a room?

SG: The more design savvy among us tend to notice the change in trend colours sooner, so every three years or so are looking for an update. Sometimes changing an accent wall or painting some furniture can be enough to bring a fresh look to a room.

If you have used a high quality paint product, like Benjamin Moore, you may find the walls and trim easier to keep clean and therefore not have so much wear and tear – instead you may find yourself just wishing for a change even before the finish wears out.

CS: What colours are popular right now?

SG: It will depend on the room or the mood you want to set.

Bedrooms – With our increasingly hectic lifestyles, many of us are looking to create a sanctuary in our bedrooms.  This is personal, but for many it means calming, coloured neutrals with undertones of lilac, such as Portland grey 2109-60 or greens like Halo OC-46 or Guilford Green HC-116.

Living Room – In both large homes and smaller ones, open concept floor plans are common, so living rooms are often open to other spaces like kitchens, dining rooms and foyers.  This doesn’t have to mean only one colour is used throughout. The living room can still have its own personality with colourful accents in accessories and smaller furniture items.  Using different shades and tints of the same colour is another way to define the spaces – using deeper colours to bring more coziness or drama.

Dining Room – The big trend in dining rooms is still influenced by the farmhouse kitchen – casual large tables with benches and eclectic seating is popular.  As for colours, this is a great space, even in an open concept plan, to bring a purposeful accent colour to one of the walls – or even the ceiling (your fifth wall)!

Kitchens are the heart of the home, so colour here is very personal.  Modern kitchens often employ splashes of colour in small appliances or even on cabinet doors. Walls, therefore, tend to be neutral with white and grey being very popular (Chantilly lace OC-65 is the Benjamin Moore feature white for 2015). Colours inspired by natural materials like marble, granite and slate are subtle and work well in a kitchen with a mix of wood and stone.

Home office – This is a space where you want to bring in the right mix of calm colour and invigorating accents.  Blues and greens remain popular for the home office with Maid of the Mist CC-728 and Birds Egg 2051-60 as my two favourite picks.

Changing the paint colour of a room is an easy and affordable way to give your space a fresh new look and, since it doesn’t count as a home renovation, there’s no need to let your home insurance provider know.

If you are doing more major renos though, be sure to advise your insurance provider. This will help ensure you still have adequate coverage both during the renovations and long after the renovations are complete.