What to do with many small amounts of paint?
December 30, 2010 6:38 PM   Subscribe

I just bought a house across the street from a Home Depot, all of the walls are white, and I'm indecisive. Please help me use up my many paint samples.

I have approximately 20 of these paint samples in various shaded blues and greens (Behr's website doesn't give good links, but example colors are Hallowed Hush, Aqua Smoke, Herbal Garden, etc.). Each sample is about a cup of paint.

Any ideas for creative uses for these samples or a good place to donate them to? All I've come up with so far is painting my address on the garbage and recycling cans.
posted by jalexc to Home & Garden (11 answers total)
Paint chip trees make a cute advent countdown for next year, if you celebrate Christmas.
posted by quodlibet at 6:49 PM on December 30, 2010

Got any unfinished (or simply ugly and non-valuable) furniture you wish were blue or green?

You can also use them for painting on canvas.

I really wouldn't use them for your walls, unless maybe there's a very small awkward wall somewhere that you could paint with only one cup of paint.

If the colors all look great together, you could also maybe paint your kitchen cabinets, if they're wooden.
posted by Sara C. at 6:53 PM on December 30, 2010

I did a swirly mural kind of painting on the hideous sliding foyer closet doors. You may want to add an accent colour into it though -my colours are blue, green, lavender & plum.
posted by kellyblah at 7:08 PM on December 30, 2010

Are there any shades that would be harmonious if blended together? For example, two blues that lean toward green would become a clean intermediate shade when blended, while one blue than is greenish and one that is purplish would look muddy if mixed.

You can get two or more cups of paint of these new blends that you could use as an accent or as a single colour focus wall (which you may need to add some white to if you need a little more volume and less intensity).
posted by maudlin at 7:08 PM on December 30, 2010

This is what you use on the furniture you've also bought from Home Depot.
posted by mhoye at 7:15 PM on December 30, 2010

This really depends on your style. I like a variety of colors but typically for bedding, wall paint, accessories I prefer bolder muted colors like brown, eggplant, orange, sunshine yellow, eggshell blue, certain shades of red and a variety of different greens from sage to mint.

I'd say imagine you at your happiest perhaps somewhere you've been or vacation, a child hood home that evokes really good memories and mimic the colors. Good luck! what a lovely problem to have, "what color should I paint my home"!
posted by gypseefire at 7:39 PM on December 30, 2010

I kept those for touch ups. Quite handy.
posted by fshgrl at 8:04 PM on December 30, 2010

I saw a place where they were used for a feature wall. The owner used tape to make straight lines and made a sort of Mondrian patchwork.
posted by Joe in Australia at 8:41 PM on December 30, 2010

i love working with complex palettes of related colors versus simple palettes of a few. it really brings a space to life without overpowering.

easy, easy thing to do that looks great if you'd like a spirited room: divide your paint samples into related families. things like greenish-blues, purplish blues, dark blues, light blues, and so on. easiest way to start thinking about doing this is to map out your walls on paper, then sketch in the stripes with colored pencil, pastel or crayon. (photoshop or similar gives a more accurate sketch from an initial photo with color laid over it.)

paint sections of the walls in vertical rectangular shapes of related color if you wanna emphasize the room's height, or horizontal to emphasize its length or width. you'll end up with something that looks akin to this or this:

if your walls are plank, then you can also paint each plank a different color.

the nice thing about room like this is that it cuts down on your furniture budget -- you can use all white or taupe pieces, which are generally cheapest or more easily bought as floor models (at, usually, a 50% or more discount).

go forth and be martha, my child.
posted by patricking at 10:43 PM on December 30, 2010 [1 favorite]

Paint balls different colors and put them in bowls as decoration. Or pinecones. Or paint baskets or bottles or oatmeal canisters and make vases or a window display. Think "home accents."
posted by TG_Plackenfatz at 10:08 AM on December 31, 2010

You could make a floorcloth. You don't even need to sew the edges, just use fusible web to hem, which comes in narrow rolls perfect for this kind of use.
posted by annsunny at 11:56 AM on December 31, 2010

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