Nothing transforms a home like a fresh coat of paint. It’s a simple way to change the appearance, the style and the mood. Deep, rich tones add depth and character, and soft neutrals can instill a feeling of calm. While everyone has their own preferences, there is always an industry favorite.

Sherwin-Williams Paints’ 2017 color of the year—Poised Taupe—is a neutral shade of gray. Ricardo Suarez, owner of Calumet Painting & Restoration, at 6733 Columbia Avenue in Hammond, says other colors pair well and complement Poised Taupe. “It gives you a lot of options” he says. “This one is warmer than other colors we’ve used.” Suarez makes his magic with Sherwin-Williams Paints “because its availability in so many stores makes it easy to access.”

Suarez has painted interiors and exteriors of residential homes and commercial buildings—as well as cabinets—for 30 years, so he’s seen a lot of paint trends come and go. He makes it his business to keep up with color trends. “We do a lot of higher-end interior painting at this time of year,” he says. “I’ve noticed that lighter grays and neutrals are very popular.”

Indoors, Suarez says clients are opting to use the Poised Taupe shade with either darker gray, purple, burgundy (merlot) or burnt orange accents. He admits that these color combinations sound unusual, but says the end result looks great in commercial settings or in the entryway of a home, especially on Venetian plasters.

Intense color has been replaced by more muted and neutral hues, says Suarez, and people are shying away from decorative faux finishes. “People will choose tonal colors for a trim, accent wall or focal point of the room,” he adds. “It’s an easy fix to change the accent wall if you get tired of it.”

When choosing a paint color, Suarez says that the best way to see if it will work in the home is to buy a quart and splash some on the wall. “You need to assess how colors look in various lighting and in different types and sizes of rooms,” he explains. “Many shades will vary based on the amount of sunlight that shines into a room.” Suarez says it’s helpful to watch a paint company’s video for help. Some show how colors look in each room of a house and even offer a pass-through view so you can see how they work together.

During warmer weather, Suarez focuses on exterior painting. He says that the trend in both residential and commercial exteriors is neutral earth tones such as brown and beige. White is popular as well, and is accented with touches of color on the front door and shutters. “That’s where people get brave with color,” says Suarez, “and I encourage it.”

For more information, visit calumetpainting.com.

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