Whether you're looking for a dramatic change or a subtle refresh, indoors or out, a fresh coat of paint is one of the most effective ways of entirely making over, or even just elevating, your home.
While you may be tempted to reach for the failsafe whites, a dose of colour – done right – will pay dividends when it comes to adding style, character and value.
With a range of Resene colours to choose from, you might be wondering how to choose hues that suit your style and bring out the best in your home, so we've checked in with the paint pros on how to go about getting it just right.
Resene testpots are likely to quickly become your new best friends, but in-house paint expert Murdo Shaw advises not painting them straight onto your walls or home surfaces as the existing colour will affect how the new colour looks.
Instead, use an A2 card and paint all of the Resene testpot in two coats onto the card, leaving a border around the edge. Once dry, move it around the house and view it at different times of the day to see how it looks.
"Outdoor paint colours will look lighter in bright sun, so if you're choosing between two, it's usually best to go for the brighter one," says Murdo.
"When you're choosing colours for adjacent areas – such as weatherboards and window trim, make sure you allow for extra contrast. For example, instead of choosing a half or quarter strength of your Resene colour, choose a full and triple strength."
If you're lucky enough to be building new, chances are in the future you may want to change your wall colours. Choosing colours for your joinery and roof that go with lots of different Resene Paint and Resene Wood Stain colours, won't limit you for choice when you want to repaint or restain later.
"The great thing about Resene paints is that our colours are available for inside and out – so whatever you like, you can paint it where you want to. This means you literally have thousands of colours to choose from so you can go as crazy, bold or as neutral as you like," says Murdo.
"Neutrals are continuing to become warmer as we seek further comfort from our homes," says Resene design advocate Rebecca Long. "Pair Resene Eighth Canterbury Clay with the timeless Resene Alabaster, rich Resene Swiss Caramel and indulgent Resene Rebel."
Greige is a thing: Rebecca says Resene Triple White Pointer offers the perfect balance between grey and beige and blends effortlessly with light linens and raw concretes. "Contrast with the moody Resene Fast Forward or for a burst of energy complement with Resene Bi Hoki."
Rebecca says another key trend is using paint to "connect your home with nature and bring the outdoors in".
"Greens such as Resene Peace are a great way to bring a fresh approach to your home," she says. "Pair with the deep Resene Atlas and creamy Resene Smoothie."
Going to the dark side
Darker paint shades can have a major impact, but using them outside will attract a lot of heat, which can cause surfaces to warp. If you’re planning to choose a dark paint colour or wood stain outside, choose a Resene CoolColour.
Resene CoolColours are designed with special pigment technology that looks like a normal Resene Paint or Wood Stain but cleverly reflects more of the sun's heat. This keeps the coating and the surface of your home cooler.
To gloss or not to gloss?
As well as choosing the perfect colour, consider the sheen level of your paint, and which products you need to use where. The gloss level of your paint will not only change how you see the colour but also affects how washable it is.
"Generally speaking, the higher the gloss level, the easier to clean and the brighter the colour looks," says Murdo. "The lower the gloss level the more it will hide marks and the muddier the colour will look – and you can use this to your advantage. Use a high gloss like Resene Enamacryl on your front door in a bold colour, to draw attention to it. Use a penetrating oil stain like Resene Woodsman Pitch Black on your fences to help them blend into your garden."
For painted weatherboards, Murdo says Kiwi decorators tend to choose Resene Sonyx 101 semi-gloss waterborne paint or Resene Lumbersider low sheen paint for walls. If you live in a rendered home, then low sheen Resene X-200 weathertight membrane is a popular choice as it has extra stretchability to help bridge fine cracks. For stained weatherboards, use Resene Waterborne Woodsman, which is available in a wide range of stain colours.
Getting down to the details
Trims and joinery need a different paint than walls, as normal paint will stick to itself on contact. Instead, you want to choose a waterborne enamel, like Resene Enamacryl, which is a gloss, or Resene Lustacryl, a semi-gloss.
Paint can dry very fast when you’re painting in the hot months. If you find your paint is drying too fast, use Resene Hot Weather Additive to slow down the paint drying so you have more time to get a quality finish.
Wrap your paintbrush in a reusable plastic bag when you want to take a break or overnight to avoid washing-up.
Once you’ve finished painting, return any empty cans or paint you don’t need to Resene’s PaintWise recycling service, which is available at most Resene ColorShops.
If you get stuck on choosing colours or products, your local Resene ColorShop staff can help you figure out what you need.
For quality New Zealand made products and expert advice on how to decorate your home, inside or out this summer, see your Resene ColorShop.
This article was created for Resene.