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How to mix paint colours and some popular suggestions

There are A LOT of colours. And then, there are A LOT of different tints, shades and tones for each colour. Although this can seem quite overwhelmingly, the advantage is that it is not impossible to find the exact colour you are looking for when it comes to painting your property. The specific colour you are looking for may not be available in a pre-packaged tin, but you can mix paint colours to get that perfect match. Let’s take a look at how best to do this and some popular colour mixing concoctions to get you started.

How to mix paint colours

It is true that almost any colour can be created from using just a few basic colours. The trick to getting it right though is to make sure you understand the basics of the colour wheel. But before we begin to mix paint colours, let’s gather everything we need.

Step 1: Gather paint-mixing tools

Mixing paint is a little bit more complicated than throwing two colours of paint together. It’s important to get the colour right on a smaller scale before you mix on grander scale. So here’s what you’ll need to get started:

Different paint colours – if possible, try to get some sample paint tins from your paint supplier. We will learn what colours you will need depending on your desired outcome. It is always handy to have white and black on hand to try different tints and shades.

Paint palette – you’ll need something on which to mix your paint colours. You can just use paint tin lids, but you would need to make sure that you clean them off thoroughly before putting them back on the paint tins lest you mix paint colours you weren’t intending to. A
better idea would be to use a paint palette, especially if you mix paint colours often.

Paint brushes or palette knives – to mix paint colours together you can either use paint brushes or knives. It’s a personal preference, but palette knives should give you a more uniform colour compared to paint brushes.

Step 2: Start to mix paint colours

Once you’ve got everything together, you can start playing around with different paint colours to find your perfect match. Keep the colour wheel in mind and always try to start with the three primary colours as all other colours come from them, i.e. blue, yellow and red. Mixing primary colours will then result in the secondary colours: green, orange and purple. You can then mix primary and secondary colours together to make tertiary colours: yellow-green, blue-green, blue-violet, red-violet, red-orange and yellow-orange. From there, you can mix a tertiary colour with a primary colour to make a brown. To make black, mix complementary colours together. To make grey, mix a primary, analogous, and complement colour together.

Just add varying quantities of the colours you are using to skew it towards the more desired colour. Remember to have white and black paint on hand as well to adjust the tint, shade and saturation of the colour you are mixing.

Here are some popular paint colour mixes:

Pink = White + add a little red
Royal red = Red + add blue
Light orange = Yellow + add red a little white
Golden = Yellow + little red or brown
Yellow = Yellow + white lightening, red or brown for dark shades
Pale green = Yellow + add blue / black for the depth
Grass green = Yellow + add blue and green
Olive = Green + add yellow
Light green = Green + add white / yellow
Turquoise-green = Green + add blue
Bottle green = Yellow + add blue
Turquoise blue = Blue + to add a little green
Royal blue = Blue + black, and add a little green
Dark blue = Blue + Black, and add a little green
Grey = White + add a little black
Pearl grey = White + black add a little blue
Mustard = Yellow + add red, black and a little green
Beige = Brown and gradually add white to give a beige color. Add yellow for brightness.
Off-white = White + add brown or black
Emerald-green = Yellow + add green and white
Aquamarine = White + add green and black
Tomato red = Red + add yellow and brown
Plum = Red + add white, blue and black

For more ideas, go here.

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