I have been working on my organic coastal home paint colors for MONTHS. Months! I’ve purchased way too many sample pots and put too many smears of color on our virgin drywall.
This morning, I finally hit “send” and made a commitment to our home paint colors.
If you’re building or remodeling, I know you are researching paint colors too; it comes with the territory!
I put SO much time and overthinking into the my paint decisions, I hope this post helps someone else out there save some time and energy (cause you’ve got plenty of over things to worry about!).
Not ready quite yet? Here is a Pinterest graphic (hit the "pin it" button to save it for later!).
Our Home Paint Colors
1.| Sherwin Williams Black Magic (6991)
I’m not sure if a black exterior reads as an organic coastal home paint color or not, but we decided early on that it was the direction we wanted to go with our exterior.
It seemed like all the moody, dark houses I was saving for inspiration were Iron Ore, so initially I felt pretty certain that I would choose it when we decided to go dark on our exterior. But if there is one thing I’ve learned in my paint selection trials over the years, it’s this: a paint color that looks good in someone else’s house is not guaranteed to look amazing in yours too.
This was the case with Iron Ore. I tried several black colors on our exterior including: Inkwell, Cyberspace, Greenblack, Caviar, Tricorn Black, Black Magic and Iron Ore.
Iron Ore surprised me in how light it appeared… almost similar to the Kendall Charcoal we have on our current house. It was a beautiful color, but I was shooting for BLACK BLACK BLACK and I knew it wouldn’t give me the result I wanted.
I immediately knew Black Magic was the one, but I showed the samples to everyone (and kept my opinion to myself) to get their feedback. Everyone included Black Magic in their top two so I knew it was the winner!
When they put the first coat on, I wasSO happy we went dark. The dramatic, monochromatic statement that Black Magic makes on our exterior is exactly what I was after.
2.| Benjamin Moore Swiss Coffee (OC-45)
Ahhh… white walls.
By far the biggest challenge when it comes to selecting interior home paint colors (IMO).
Color that looks perfect in room A reads a little green in room B and somehow blue in room C. What the heck?
Lighting, “hidden” undertones, surrounding landscaping, and other factors all heavily influence the way a paint color looks on the wall of a given room; it feels nearly impossible (at least in our space) to find one color that looks good everywhere.
It’s easy enough to browse Pinterest and get an idea of tried and true paint colors (check out my Pinterest Home Paint Colors Board here if you want to save yourself a few hours of scrolling).
Unfortunately, a white that looks awesome in every space your favorite designer shares might not look quite as as lovely once it goes up on your walls.
It is SO important to actually test white paint you are considering in multiple places in your home.
I tried warm whites, cool whites… I was all over the board. In the end, I came back to the original suggestion from my builder, which was Swiss Coffee.
It reads a touch creamier in the main living area than I thought I wanted, but it seemed to be the best everywhere else and I decided to cut it to 50% strength. I will add some photos once it’s actually up on the walls.
Until then, here is a photo of the Studio McGee home sporting Swiss Coffee @ 75%.
Photo Source: Studio McGee
If it’s good enough for Shea, it’s probably good enough for me… but I still tested it to be sure!
3.|Benjamin Moore Knoxville Grey (HC-160)
There’s a story behind this color.
I ripped a photo out of Modern Farmhouse Style magazine before we even started building because it featured a board and batten accent wall painted this color. I didn’t know what the color was or where it would go, but I knew it would appear somewhere in our house.
Fast forward to decision time. I needed to pick my home paint colors, but I couldn’t figure out what this paint was. I stalked the designer on Instagram, read through the comments on her posts to see whether she had divulged the information, and even went so far as to message her about it. She wouldn’t tell me. I don’t blame her at all, and totally understand why. But I wasn’t giving up.
I kept searching until one night I was scrolling through Pinterest and saw this photo:
I clicked on the image and was taken to this amazing post by Cyndy at The Creativity Exchange, which shows Knoxville Grey in many different applications- interior and exterior. Once I saw this, I intuitively KNEW this was the color I had been looking for.
A few days later, I saw a very old post where the designer of my original inspo photo commented and confirmed that I was correct.
Long story short: This is the color that will be in my laundry room. I’m obsessed with the way this green/blue/grey looks against white trim and cabinets. It changes significantly depending on the light that hits it and can appear grey, blue or even green.
4.| Benjamin Moore Tate Olive (HC-112)
This color was love at first sight. I saw this photo from Max Humphrey, and I was done.
I broke my aforementioned “test it out” rule and told the cabinet company that this was the color of my office built-ins without so much as looking at a paint swatch.
I never realized how much I have learned to trust my design intuition until now. When I do it always pays off.
This sounds ridiculous, but this color fills my heart with joy every single time I walk into the office and see it on the wall.
Find yourself a color that speaks to you this way!
The office will be this color walls, trim + ceiling. I’m going all in.
5.| Benjamin Moore Hale Navy (HC-154)
Hale Navy is a tried and true choice for me. There are a million pictures of it on the internet for a good reason. It’s versatile and gives you color while still being neutral enough that it’s not a huge risk to put it all over the cabinets that you invested so much money into.
We used Hale Navy on the island in our current house, and I still love it as much today as the day they installed it.
I needed a solid paint color for our basement built ins that I wouldn’t tire of, so I didn’t think twice about choosing Hale Navy for our media cabinet and our bunk beds.
We’re also using this color on the walls in my son’s room (with white trim).
6.| Sherwin Williams Accessible Beige (7036)
This isn’t one of the colors I KNEW I wanted, but it was one of those where the correct color jumps up off the fan deck at you and hits you over the head. I held the fan deck up to our multi-colored shower floor, countertop, and wood mirrors and this subtle neutral was an instant winner.
7.| Benjamin Moore Timberwolf (1600)
This is a neutral blue grey that can read either REALLY GREY or REALLY BLUE. Make absolutely sure you test a sample of this color in your space.
8.| Sherwin Williams Iron Ore (7069)
This popular exterior choice wasn’t quite right for our house, but on the inside, this soft black was perfect. We are using it on the board and batten in our powder room as well as on our shiplap in the pantry nook and fireplace surround.
9.| Sherwin Williams Foothills (7514)
The final color was a recommendation of our builder, and I am SO glad I went for it. It is a soft, pretty brown that blends well with my earthy green tile and white oak floors.
So, there you have it! Let me know which (if any) of these colors you’ve used.