Paint for Your Outdoor Space

Now that we have a plan it's time to talk color! Choosing a paint color is extremely difficult for me.  As I mentioned in the planning stages, I want the deck to feel moody, bistro, cafe like.  To me that means warm colors, but I also want it to be FUN!  So I browsed around the web for color inspiration.  I also had this floor from my friend Lori in mind, I'm very much in love with it!  In the end I'm thinking it will be more fiesta than bistro... but I'm good with that, after all, it's mostly for the kids!

I picked up the color swatch guide for the True Value Painter's Select Porch and Floor.  It's important to choose the right kind of paint for your job.  Your True Value employee can help you if your not sure what to use.  It's also important that you understand how to clean up your paint when your done.  Latex water based paints can be easily cleaned up with water where as Urethane paints need mineral spirits to clean up.  In our case I knew we were going to be using a paint sprayer so I wanted clean up to be as simple as possible.  But I'm getting ahead of myself!  The swatches.....

For the wood I wanted something with a gray tone.  I decided to go with the "After Hours" shown above.  Or here on the awesome color picker from True Value's website-

If you know the color your looking for by name you can type it in and it brings up the whole swatch family.  You can also zoom out to see that entire area of the swatch catalog.

If your any thing like me you go to the store, look at all the swatches, pick one out and have it mixed up immediately!  I would like to take this opportunity to highly discourage you from that approach.  It's no fun to wait, I understand.  When your painting something it's fun and exciting (until you actually get to the painting part right!  We always forget what a task it is to paint, it's like childbirth..... eventually you look back and say "that wasn't so bad, lets do it again!"  Ha!).  We're getting away from my point... Take your color swatch HOME!  Look at it in the space your planning on using it in.  This is not a new tip, you guys have heard it before.  That's why they make those handy little samples of paint, so you can test it out before you paint an entire room and hate it! 

Well thank goodness I wasn't quite ready for paint yet when I brought these swatches home because I fell completely in love with "Boa" which I hadn't even noticed in the store, but suddenly at home it was the most perfect mustard yellow (for the cement area, not the wood).  Oh I was smitten.  So I took the swatch back to the store to have them mix it up, pulled it out at the paint counter, and said "OH HECK NO!"  You see.... what was the perfect shade of mustard yellow at my house was actually an awful green at the store and an entirely different color when you look at the swatch gallery.  See below!

What!  That color was NOT what I had in mind.  And although it looked perfect in my space I couldn't bring myself to choosing it.  So I grabbed a different swatch book and took it HOME!  Lesson learned!

Oddly enough, the color I did end up going with is not in the online gallery.  Maybe it's new!  I will share it with you soon! Actually it may end up being a color of it's very own, I'll explain that later!