Decor Aids

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Decorating With Paint Tips

Great basic tips that are often forgotten or overlooked.

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4. Choose a color scheme—not just one color.

A good color scheme has three colors, explains Mary Lawlor, color expert at Kelly-Moore Paints: the base color, which is usually neutral and sets the tone; the contrast color, which is often a dark color and creates depth within a space; and the accent color, which pulls everything together and adds punch. Lawlor suggests using a color wheel to help select your sequence. Or play on the base color with accessories, like Mecadon does: “My walls are a lush emerald green, so I usually leave out a bowl of electric-green apples.” Photo: Jupiterimages

7. Accessorize with paint

Wallpaper and molding help break up the monotony of a one-tone wall, but so does a painted pattern, like stripes. Interior design blogger Chris Kauffman used this trick to add dimension to her dining room. When choosing colors, think shade and sheen, Lawlor explains. The more contrast, the more dramatic. For example, teaming two flat colors within the same color family will have an understated effect, while two opposing colors with varying luster—i.e., a gloss and a flat—will stand out. Photo: Robin Stubbert