Choosing the Paint: How to Pick Paint Colours for an Entire House – Our DIY House

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Choosing the Paint: How to Pick Paint Colours for an Entire House - Our DIY House

Paint colour can set the mood for a room. It can give off a relaxed vibe or an energetic vibe. Colours can make a person feel things in an instant.

I’m a big fan of colour. I’ve loved all sorts of crazy colours ever since I was little, and one of my favourite units in graphic design school was when we studied the psychology of colour. Experimenting with colour is incredibly fun for me – I guess you could call me a complete and utter colour geek.


Choosing the Paint: How to Pick Paint Colours for an Entire House - Our DIY House

When it came time to choosing the paint colours for Our DIY House, I knew I had to study home decor photos to oblivion and choose very carefully.

Our current Garage House has a lot of intensely coloured walls (chili pepper red and chocolate brown among them) and I knew I wanted a dramatic change. I wanted our new home to be a calming retreat – a place where I could kick off my shoes, play with my kids, and feel like I was in a bright, open expanse.

Choosing the Paint: How to Pick Paint Colours for an Entire House - Our DIY House

The paint colours for our new home have been very inspired from images I’ve found on Pinterest (Pinterest is AH-MAZING for home decor inspiration, by the way). Essentially, I pinned all of the home decor images that I loved and then I studied them to sort out what it was about them that I loved.

I came to the conclusion that I was drawn rooms with white or light-coloured walls and bold colours or prints on the furniture and pillows.

Our DIY House Paint Inspirations - Light walls and colourful accents

(1. Source 2. Source 3. Source)

I had heard some good things on the amazing coverage of Valspar Signature Paint + Primer, so when I found out that Lowe’s Canada wanted to partner with me to paint Our DIY House I was ecstatic!

Lowe's Canada Valspar Paint

We made at least three trips to our local Lowe’s to stare at paint chips and bring them home to stare at them some more (my little girlies were more than content to hang out in their fancy blue race car – there’s a steering wheel for each!).

Just chilling in a Lowe's car

Most of our house will be a gorgeous warm light grey colour called “Seashell Gray” from Valspar. I purchased swatches of a few different light grey colours (you can buy cute little jars of Valspar paint from Lowe’s for less than $5 that allow you to paint a 4′ by 4′ square) and settled on this one.

Select rooms on the main floor will be a beautifully soft greyed turquoise called “Distant Valley” from Valspar to compliment the Seashell Grey.

Our trim will be “Ultra White” from Valspar which is a nice warm white that’s still pure enough to contrast with our grey. I’m considering going a little bold with some of the doors on our main level and painting them a striking semi-gloss black: “Lincoln Cottage Black” (or “Noir” it’s now called) from Valspar.

The girl’s rooms and bathroom will be a lot brighter than the rest of the home. I think it’s fun to have punchy colours in kid’s rooms! Little C’s is “Sonic Plum” by Valspar (an electric plum purple) and Baby A’s is “Mystic Sea” by Valspar (a happy, light turquoise).

Our DIY House: Choosing the Paint

When it came to ordering the paint, I used the helpful paint calculator on the Valspar website, and the paint manager at Lowe’s was even kind enough to call me after the order was placed to go over my quantities to ensure they were correct.

The day we picked up our paint was a HUGE milestone for me. I can’t remember being so excited about paint in my life!

Valspar paint

We’ve already primed the entire house (3000 square feet!) and have a good chunk of the painting done. It’s gone SO FAST. I’ll tell you more about how we’ve done that later – it’s really, really exciting to see all of the colour go up!

Are you searching for paint colours for your home? Here are my tips:

  1. Collect home decor pictures that you love
  2. Study the paint colours used in the photos and see if you can find a pattern. Do you tend to like soft, light colours? Do you like drama? Are blues your thing? Maybe you’re drawn to warm colours like yellow?
  3. Collect paint chips of lots of different variations of the colours you love and take them home to see them in natural light (in general, pick something a little more muted or greyed than you think – you’ll be surprised how light intensifies things!)
  4. Narrow your choices down to one or two colours, and then purchase sample pots (Lowe’s has them for under $5). Paint a large piece of scrap drywall or a large square of wall in your home and stare at it a few days. It’s important to see a paint swatch at different times of day and with different home decor accents.

What do you think of our house colours? Do you have a paint colour that you’re dying to try in your home?

(Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Lowe’s Canada.ย  The views and opinions expressed here are purely my own.)

Our DIY House by The DIY MommyThis post is part of my “Our DIY House” series where I’ll share with you my most exciting DIY ever – building a country house from the foundation up with my talented hubby! We’re crazy, we’re creative, we’re on a limited budget and we’re planning on having it finished in the Spring of 2013.


  1. So I’m no where near needing to paint my whole house (living in a rental, dreaming of my first place), but I still loved this post! I’ve often felt paralysed when deciding on things like a sofa or artwork, I know paint would be tough – I’ve bookmarked this post for the moment when I finally have to choose!


    1. Thanks so much for visiting, Raj! Choosing the paint was really hard for me, but I’m really happy with the results so far. I definitely think the key is to look for a LONG time at inspiration photos and (big) paint swatches. Have a good one!

  2. Love that gray, do you know how may shades of gray I have painted on the wall.LOL To purple, to green to blue. Crazy, We lean towards the blue gray. But I , Catherinereally just want classic gray, black and white mixed together, this looks pretty close! Thanks Catherine

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