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Considerations when Selecting Paint Colour and Sheen

Are you starting to get bored with your home décor?  Is that gloomy wall or room colour dampening your mood? The good news is that with only a fresh coat of paint, you can bring a totally new and refreshed look to a room or home without breaking the bank!

If you are thinking about a painting project around your PEI home in 2021, below are some helpful tips as you consider what colour and sheen to select. 

Before picking up that brush, consider the following:

  • Start small
  • Think about the mood you want your room to have
  • Pay attention to the lighting available in the room
  • Walk into another room to consider the transition
  • Learn the colour terms
  • Follow the Color Wheel.
  • Test your colour choice before going all-in
  • Add depth to your room with decorative finishes (matching coloured pillow or accent pieces)
  • Play up monochromatic, adding similar colours throughout the room 
  • Choose the right paint finish for your area

Which paint she
en should you choose?


  • Glossy paint is much easier to clean up. For those with young children, and are considering a high traffic room such as a playroom, or a space where there’s a tendency to get grease on the wall such as the kitchen, a glossy sheen would be the choice for you. A glossy sheen allows for an easily washable wall with a damp cloth or sponge. Wall washing however can cause blemishes and imperfections in the paint, which can give off an unpleasant shine in spots. You may wish to avoid glossy sheen in living rooms for this reasoning. 


  • With less shine compared to a gloss finish, a semi-gloss still provides you with the ease of wash-ability. A semi-gloss is also a cheaper option than the gloss finish while still providing a similar final product. This is considered to be a great option for kitchens and baths, as well as for trim.


  • For walls that have plenty of imperfections, a flat or matte sheen would be best suited, typically only requiring one coat depending on the base colour. The downside to a matte sheen is that it does not hold up well to cleaning, and tends to show more dirt than other sheens. For rooms with high traffic and lots of fingerprints, a matte sheen would not be ideal. Eggshell is the most common matte sheen.

Which colour should you choose?


  • To create a soothing feel to a room, choose to stay within a shade and use a monochromatic approach such as different blues, or greys. These shades look great in bathrooms or a bedroom if you’re looking for a sense of calming.
  • Light colour choices such as blues, lavenders, greys, pinks and soft yellows are the perfect choice for a cool and calm romantic feel. If you are looking for a warmer calm ambience in your bedroom, look for lighter shades of warm colours such as light yellows, orange, or earth-toned browns. As a follow-up, try out different textures in your bedding or accessories in order to make the room even more appealing


  • Elegance and flexibility come through in a room via neutral colours, and not just the average whites or beige. Turn your living room into an elegant seating area by choosing varying shades of neutral colors such as almond walls with red toned browns for the trim. Further add to your room by adding pops of colour whether it be a through, pillow or vase placed to offset the subtle neutral tones in the room.
  • Always keep in mind that the lighter colour you choose, the more spacious the room is going to appear. Alternating shades of rust, mahogany or garnet will offer instant elegance and a feeling of rich earthiness.


  • Looking for a room with a little more spunk? Choose vibrant colours and their complementary shades such as oranges, gold, reds and dark purples. Make sure to choose the pairing complementary colour from the opposite side of the colour wheel to add dramatic effect!
  • Go for a black and red in a larger room for a great stand out, bold contrast. 


Check out Benjamin Moore’s picks for 2021:

Color 2021


What about Ceilings?

  • Selecting a colour for your ceiling is all about the height you’re trying to portray in the room. A darker shade ceiling, even darker than the walls, creates a lower ceiling visually. On the other hand, you’re able to expand your room and create a higher ceiling effect by choosing a lighter colour than the walls, commonly painted white.
  • Consider thinking outside the box this year, adding a light tint to your ceiling colour that you’re also able to use on door trims and floor moldings to create a harmonious transition in the room.

If you need help with your painting project, fill out the form below for a free estimate: 

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