When I am selecting new paint colors for a client, I like to use large poster-size sample boards with a 1" white edge around it. The white edge is crucial in keeping the sample from competing with the existing wall color when you hold them next to each other. The boards allow me to move the swatch from wall to wall and room to room (unlike painting a swatch directly on the wall itself). I prefer to use foam core boards as they stand freely on their own and although they are more expensive, they hold up nicely. (I explain in more detail about my boards and how to select a paint color in a post I wrote last year ... you can read that post here).
One of the things I have wanted to do for a long time is make up some new sample boards. I painted most of the boards that I have been using over six years ago and as paint color trends have changed, some of my boards are out-dated. I used to use more yellow-based neutrals - colors like Philadelphia Cream and Monroe Bisque. But these days I am using more gray based neutrals.
I also wanted to come up with a general palette to help simplify paint selection. I tend to gravitate towards the same colors that I know work well and it is a lot more efficient to bring out paint boards that I know will work when helping a client select paint rather than trying to flip through fan deck after fan deck for a new color.
Last week I selected 20 or so of my 'go-to' neutrals along with a few new ones, added some new blues and greens and came up with a new group of boards to help me when I am working with clients. I purposely selected neutrals with different undertones (blue, green, yellow, pink) so that I would have a color that will work with any wood, stone or carpet that is existing.
To make my boards, I tape off the edge of the board first with blue painter's tape and then paint two coats of the paint with inexpensive foam rollers. When the paint is dry, I remove the tape and label the paint color in the lower margin with a black felt pen (Sharpie). NOTE: This time I had some trouble with the tape pulling off a bit of the poster board paper when I removed it which isn't really a problem except that it doesn't look as clean and neat as I would prefer. I thought it might have been the tape but when I painted the backs of some of my previous boards they were fine ... it turns out the new foam boards I purchased were a lot less sturdy then the ones I have previously used. Next time I would get a less sticky painter's tape to prevent that from happening.
I took advantage of a slow week while I was home trying to recover from my cold / allergy attack and painted 45 new boards! Although I think the paint fumes set me back a bit in my recovery, it was really great to go out for my first couple of paint selection appointments this year and have all new boards! It makes my job easier and I know my clients appreciate the nice visual.
Happy Monday Everyone!