Painting Ideas For Interior Walls

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Interior Painting Ideas

Interior painting allows you to express your individuality and truly make a home your own. Painting walls is not as simple as picking a color you like and grabbing a brush, however.

Painting Ideas: Colors

Interior paint comes in a dazzling array of colors, and it can be difficult to visualize what different painting ideas look like. Many people bring home color swatches from paint stores and stick them to the walls. Some paint stores offer small sample paint cans so you can paint a small section of wall before committing to your paint project.

Paint supply websites sometimes offer online "showrooms" where you can virtually paint walls in different colors. Be aware that your computer monitor colors may not match exactly how paint will look.

Painting ideas are often driven by current trends. As of 2011, interior paint design favored subtle colors when painting walls and bright colors for decorative accents. However, interior painting has no hard and fast rules: If you're planning on living in a home for the foreseeable future, pick interior paint that appeals to your sense of style.

If you're selling a home, a fresh coat of interior paint often improves a potential buyer's first impression. In such cases interior painting should stick to neutral colors, as people tend to favor very different painting ideas.

Choosing an Interior Paint

Interior paint tends to be either oil-based (alkyd) or water-based (latex). Latex interior paint is a good choice for painting walls, as latex paint doesn't fade with time, doesn't peel, produces fewer fumes and is less likely to chip then oil-based paints.

Interior paint comes in several finishes, each of which produces a different effect when painting walls. Finishes for interior painting include:

  • Eggshell paint has properties of both matte and glossy paint, and it reflects light like an eggshell.
  • Flat Enamel has a finish similar to matte, but it's less likely to wipe off when washing walls.
  • Glossy paint is shiny and durable. Not often used for painting walls, glossy paint highlights accents and decorative trim.
  • Matte paint isn't shiny or reflective, but it scratches easily and can be wiped off during cleaning.
  • Satin paints have rich textures, are slightly glossy and stand up well to cleaning.

Interior painting success depends heavily on the quality of the paint. In general, buy the best quality interior paint you can afford. You may also want to consider the environment when painting walls. Paints with low levels of volatile organic compounds release less toxic fumes into the air.

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