START A PETITION 27,000,000 members: the world's largest community for good

The Power of Paint and Color: DIY

The Power of Paint and Color: DIY

Imagine for a moment that you are standing in the paint department of your local home improvement store with paint chips and fabric swatches in hand. While contemplating the overwhelming color selection of eco-paint color choices, you start asking yourself “Do I want the room to feel soothing, energized, sexy, dramatic, calming, appetizing, healing, nature inspired, neutral or just plain white?”

According to a very reputable source (the guy behind the counter at my paint store), DIY interior painting is a cinch, but selecting a paint color can be mind-numbingly difficult. He says, “People get dizzy looking at all the color choices.”

Why do it yourself?
It’s cheap.
It’s easy to do.
It’s easy to green.
It’s a mood elevator.
It’s satisfying to do it yourself.
It’s a quick decorating solution.

What is the power of color?
Think of paint as color therapy for your home. Paint is the key element that can be used to revitalize a room. The color you choose can have therapeutic effects. The psychology behind choosing a paint color is well documented here in this Care2 article. Color impacts mood, appetite and energy level. Certain colors elicit specific and strong responses.

How to choose a color scheme?
The Paint Quality Institute suggests you choose a “warm or cool” color scheme to enhance the mood of your home.

Which are warm colors?
Colors in the red, orange and yellow families are referred to as “warm” colors since they evoke images associated with heat, like fire or sunshine. As a result they make us feel warm in a psychological sense.

Which are cool colors?
Blues, greens, violets and their intermediates are considered cool colors because of their references to pastoral landscapes and ocean vistas. When we look at these colors they elicit feelings of peace, tranquility and relaxation.

What’s new about the color green for interiors?
Green may just become the newest “neutral” color. It’s used as a subtle backdrop to reflect an enhanced eco-consciousness and green represents the growing environmental movement. Mid-tone hues of fern, palm, pine and sage on their own, or coupled with clear blue or aqua create a living space that conjures up a sense of outdoor-friendly living. Sandy tans and warm browns are intermingled to complete that earthy and eco-friendly feel.

I am inspired by nature. How can I capture my love of nature in paint colors?

Got an iPhone? Get a free color app. Just snap a picture and you can instantly match it to one of the more than 3,300 hues in the color system app. Benjamin Moore and Sherwin-Williams provide coordinating color palettes for your inspiration. If you don’t have an iPhone, you can take a cue from these apps and bring a photo with you when you choose colors.

Which are good Eco-Friendly paints?
Eco-Friendly paints come in every color of the rainbow. Here’s an article from Dwell magazine that reviews and compares some eco-friendly paints. We recently used Benjamin Moore’s Natura and got great coverage. Also, I can’t say enough good things about the product American Clay for your walls. Read about it here.

How much paint should I buy?
Here’s a handy paint calculator to help you determine how much paint you’ll need to cover your space. With DIY projects like painting a room, you’ll want to get it right the first time. Most paint companies provide coverage estimates on the paint can label.

Need more inspiration?
Check out this New York Times article, Casa de los Colores for some fun and extreme home color combos.

As for so many DIY projects for your home, know your color choices and “Measure twice, Paint once.”

Read more: EcoNesting DIY, Green Home Decor, Home, Household Hints, , , , ,

have you shared this story yet?

go ahead, give it a little love

Ronnie Citron-Fink

Ronnie Citron-Fink is a writer, editor and educator. She has written hundreds of articles about sustainable living, the environment, design, and family life for websites, books and magazines. Ronnie is the creator of Econesting, and the managing editor of Moms Clean Air Force. Ronnie was named one of the Top Ten Living Green Experts by Yahoo. Ronnie lives in New York with her family.


+ add your own
10:33PM PST on Dec 17, 2014

That’s really amazing and extraordinary blogs & can help those who get issues in searching this type of information. CertaPro Painters

6:17AM PST on Dec 28, 2012

having recently completed on our new house, we have decided and painted a neutral 'pebble' type color throughout the house, but in the lounge we have a light green fireplace wall and above the picture rail is also the same green. haven't decided on the color of the kitchen or bathroom yet, but something relatively bright. i'm certainly having a black floor in the bathroom though!

11:08PM PDT on Aug 19, 2012

Good info, thank you.

8:47AM PDT on Mar 11, 2012

Sesli Chat Sesli Sohbet Kamerali Sohbet Eglenceli Chat Sitesi Seslichat

5:25PM PDT on Oct 4, 2011

Good Article! Thanks for the info.

5:40AM PDT on Jul 17, 2011

Thank you

5:41AM PDT on Mar 20, 2011


4:04PM PDT on Sep 2, 2010

Thanks for the info

12:42AM PDT on Sep 1, 2010


10:37PM PDT on Jul 10, 2010

i love painting

add your comment

Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

people are talking

Another different food to try. I think it might just be easier to sprinkle a little ground flaxseed…

Yeah, many of these require you to ALREADY be supple and flexible, which sort of defeats the need fo…

Hope those 'green smoothies' are green because of fresh green veggies(nonGMO).

spam flagged


Select names from your address book   |   Help

We hate spam. We do not sell or share the email addresses you provide.

site feedback


Problem on this page? Briefly let us know what isn't working for you and we'll try to make it right!