Painting This One Unexpected Room Makes the Biggest Difference in Your Home

Person painting a room in their home

Major home renovations—like a kitchen rebuild or knocking down a wall—can give your space a serious facelift. Yet, believe it or not, a fresh coat of paint can make just as much of a difference (if not more).

"Paint is one of the most effective tools in transforming a space when you truly understand it," says Kellie Sirna, the founder and principal of Studio 11 Design. "The color, as well as the sheen, can create a mood or expand/contract the perceived dimensions of a space. So, choose carefully—no pressure."

The room you choose is also important—again, no pressure. Sirna helps you narrow your choices, sharing a surprising choice for the best room to paint and tips for choosing the best color to transform your space.

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Surprise! Painting This Room Makes a Massive Difference in Your Home

Sirna spills that painting your powder room can seriously transform your home's look. Wait, what? 

For the unfamiliar, the powder room (or "powder bath") has a sink and toilet, but no shower or bath (those are full bathrooms). You may also hear powder rooms referred to as "half baths." Sirna likens painting this small space to creating a "jewel box."

"The powder bath is a moment [where] you can create a lot of drama and discovery in a small space," Sirna says. "A pop of color on five sides mixed with an interesting floor pattern and great lighting can make a moment very special."

What color? Sirna loves the idea of making a bold statement by choosing a powder bath paint color with a serious "wow factor," though that's admittedly objective. She shared her three top picks to help any clients with various tastes:

  • Black (Hex code #2f2f30 like Sherwin-Williams 6258 Tricorn Black). Sirna loves this for a client looking for a moody and dramatic effect. However, its neutral appeal is somehow simple, too. "It is for the modern and minimalist client as well," she says.

  • Blue-Green (Hex code #014e4c like Sherwin-Williams 0064 Blue Peacock). Technically in the blue family, this hue mixes in green for a teal appeal. Sirna puts it squarely in "bold statement" territory).

  • Bright Pink (Hex code #B54d7f like Sherwin-Williams 6840 Exuberant Pink). Go ahead. Be extra. "This color is for the client who is not afraid to take it to the max," Sirna says. "This is a happy and cheerful look and for the client who is expressive."

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5 Tips for Choosing the Perfect Paint

1. Be intentional

A room has many elements, and Sirna says it's essential to consider them when picking the best hue for an area.

"Consider the furniture, fabrics and wall texture when selecting the perfect color to enhance the space," she says.

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2. Understand the surface you're painting

Not all paints are created equal.

"There is paint specifically for metal, indoors, outdoors, etc.," Sirna says. When the wrong paint type is selected for a surface, it will not adhere to it and can peel off."

Do yourself a favor: Read the fine print on the can or ask a staff member at the store (or do both).

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3. Get into your feelings

How do you want to feel when you enter a space? What energy and vibe do you want? And what does color have to do with all that? Sirna says paint color can affect your mood.

"Bright, warm colors such as red, orange and yellow enhance your energy," Sirna says. "On the flip side, neutral and cool shades such as blues, greens, grays and light browns are more relaxing and calming."

4. Take a test drive

Some hues and paints may look great in stores or online, but not so much in real life.

"Make sure and test the paint in the room you are using it first," Sirna says. "Look at the sample several times a day in order to see what the color will actually look like in the space you are using it in."

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5. Consider current trends

Tempted to choose the "Color of the Year"? Remember when everyone was on the gray, beige and greige bandwagons? If you like a current trend, it's totally on the table. However, take a beat.

"Don’t solely base your decision on the hottest color for the season, but definitely take it into consideration, Sirna says. "Also, look at the variety of shades of an ‘it’ color. See what works best in your space."

How Often Should You Touch Up Paint?

As a general rule, Sirna suggests touching up paint on interior spaces every five to seven years and every two to three years for exteriors. "Or when you see it chipped, of course," she adds.

In general, hallways and the areas that get the most traffic will need touch-ups more often. It is important to keep in mind that paint actually protects the surface, so it is important to develop a maintenance schedule to protect them."

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