As a paint professional, you know that some jobs go more smoothly than others. Sometimes, clients are ready to go — colors in hand, knowing exactly what they want and where. And sometimes, they are overwhelmed by color choices with only a vague notion of what they want.
Sure, every job has its up and downs, but the latter scenario is ripe for delays, as well as frustration on both sides. While it’s not your job to pick colors for them, paint is your profession, and this should be a positive experience for the both of you (translation: glowing referrals). Help them discover their perfect color, and everybody wins!
Ask… and Listen
While clients may have a style or theme in mind… some may not. To kick things off, schedule an in-person or virtual meeting to understand their vision. While looking through fan decks, here are some questions you may want to ask:
- What is the area’s purpose?
- What fixtures or décor elements in the room will stay and require a coordinating color – furniture, cabinetry, tile, countertops, window treatments, etc.?
- What kind of “look” or style do you envision for the space? Elegant? Casual? Traditional? Modern?
- How do you want the room to “feel”? Calm? Energizing? Creative? Relaxing? Fun?
- Do you have children? Grandchildren? Furry friends?
- What inspires you? Is there a room in your home you love? What about items such as art, heirlooms or other treasured items, fabrics, or photos?
At the end of the meeting, perhaps suggest that your client stop by The Home Depot® and pick up color cards/chips of hues that resonate with them. Advise them to sit with the chips for a few days and view them under different lighting conditions to see the colors at all times of the day. For example, the color undertone (yellow, blue, green, pink, brown, etc.) of whites and neutrals can be easily discovered by placing them on a piece of white paper.
Narrow the Field
Once you’ve helped your client go through their top selections as well as review color cards, it’s time to pick the final colors to sample! Don’t be surprised if your clients bring in a whole new box full of color chips. Choosing the right color is a process, and they may depend on your expertise. Plus, you may find that taking extra time to guide them through choosing paint color pays off in great returns and referrals.
If your clients need some inspiration, show them Behr Paint Company’s Top 10 Neutrals!
Soft, timeless and versatile, Antique White emanates a nostalgic feel.
Antique White was born to adorn kitchen and dining room walls, as its warmth perfectly counterbalances pure white accents. Perhaps your clients want to integrate other colors in living rooms, bedrooms, or baths. If so, Antique White works beautifully with dusty purple, green and blue tones, as well as mid-tans and dark browns.
With hints of yellow, Off White is often paired with pure whites, grays, or browns — all of which can be used just about anywhere. That said, this hue loves subdued accent colors — from light pink, peach and purple; to mid-olive and plum; to dark blue, teal, and earthy red. Stick to traditional hues for dining rooms and kitchens but go ahead and bring on the colors elsewhere, via accent walls, furnishings, throw pillows, artwork, rugs, linens, and more — with Off White as the connective thread that ties it all together.
The go-to of go-to neutrals, Navajo White is a warm, classic, hue that works best with traditional styles — inside and out.
This silky hue pops when coupled with bright whites but also pairs well with earthy browns, rust reds, and blues. Consider suggesting this for an office, bonus room, or kitchen.
Navajo White’s natural companion colors include Lunaria, Spun Wool, and Antique White, which — when combined with dark-brown and wood decor — gives living and dining rooms an elegant feel.
Warm and welcoming, Linen White is a blank slate, ready to be transformed into a work of art with colorful accents, furnishings, and décor.
Whether your clients lean toward subdued elegance, casual comfort, or free-spirited creativity, White Linen abides. In fact, its versatility pretty much gives total freedom when it comes to pairing. Let your clients play with colors — grays and beiges; or dusky light blues lilacs and tans; or black for sophistication; or even go bold with deep yellows, pinks, purples, and blues!
A warm greige that almost appears like a soothing gray, Dove radiates a peaceful and gentle mood that lifts the spirit. Highly versatile, this hue walks the middle ground between warm and cool, which means it works just about anywhere with gorgeous results.
Living and dining rooms, as well as kitchens, are the perfect candidates for combining Dove with an accent wall. Dove features light undertones of orange and red — so it partners well with warmer accents, such as purples, pinks, yellows, or deeper red hues. Bottom line: Your client can’t go wrong with this gem of a neutral.
Cottage White, a soft and creamy tone kissed by unmistakable honey-gold notes, emanates a gentle warmth, as well as a sense of peace, anywhere it’s used.
In a master or guest bedroom, its subtle undercurrents bring out the allure and timelessness of pristinely white linens. Cottage White is the ideal neutral for those looking for a robust off-white to contrast with pure white accents, creating a sophisticated ambiance in living and dining rooms. It also pairs well with colors ranging from pale dusty purple to dramatic, dark teal. Cottage White is neither too cool nor too warm, providing traditional and modern exteriors an appealing and inviting look.
White Veil is a dreamy white inspired by the lace of a vintage wedding gown touched with notes of gold.
This amiable hue boasts a hint of beige and is a great color for a family room or bedroom, as it is both airy and grounded. In fact, because of its neutrality, White Veil pairs well with nearly any décor and furniture. It’s ideal for people who want a light, bright dining or living room, without having to go with a stark tone. White Veil has only the faintest hints of orange and red, making it upbeat and youthful – yet it needs a strong accent color to bring out those gorgeous undertones.
A rich beige highlighted by hints of warm, light to mid-brown and understated gray undertones, Spanish Sand is an impressive, soft greige that can transform a home’s exterior with its range of subtle tones.
Inside, suggest using Spanish Sand on the kitchen cabinets and — depending on your client’s style — pairing it with a complementary color such as a pale peach, dusty yellow-green, or deep brown… or how about stirring up some drama by putting this neutral on the bathroom walls, accented by dark gray or muted teal.
Inspired by nature, Crisp Linen is a true beige that’s warm and balanced yet clean and fresh, like laundry after it’s dried in the sunshine.
Crisp Linen pairs well with other neutrals, as well as subtle, light- to mid-tone pinks, greens, blues, and purples. For a casual, organic vibe, infuse color via accent walls in the home’s social space, including kitchens and living/family rooms. If a more traditional look is in order, pair Crisp Linen with grays and pure whites, as well as with dark wood furniture and décor.
Give your neutral game a boost with Even Better Beige — a versatile neutral that imparts a warm, distinctive feeling wherever it’s used. A true beige with yellow undertones, Even Better Beige not only works well with other neutrals — but colors ranging from orange-golds and earthy yellows to mid-tone greens and blues, and dark browns.
In the living room, this hue serves as a flawless backdrop that allows architectural elements, such as a fireplace, exposed beams, and board-and-batten paneling, to really shine. And depending on your client’s style, kitchens and dining rooms can be anything from elegantly monochromatic to imaginatively multihued.
Comparable to Sherwin Williams’ Accessible Beige*
Custom Color Matching
Does your client have a specific color in mind? Bring their inspiration to The Home Depot® — a sample of the color that’s about 1″ x 1″ in size: a paint chip from a surface, a piece of fabric, a competitor’s paint swatch or even leftover paint — and we’ll match it. The color your client wants is the color they’ll get.
Both BEHR DYNASTY® Interior Paints and BEHR MARQUEE® Interior & Exterior Paints guaranteed* one-coat when tinted to colors from the One-Coat Hide Color Collection. Check out all the neutral colors that are one-coat.
*Limitations apply. For more information, visit Behr.com/onecoathide
✧Denotes One-Coat Hide when tinted into BEHR DYNASTY® INTERIOR & MARQUEE® Interior Paint.
✦Denotes One-Coat Hide when tinted into BEHR DYNASTY® INTERIOR & MARQUEE® INTERIOR or EXTERIOR Paint.