Uncategorized“I Don’t Have Time To Test My Colour” (and other surprising responses from the shop floor)

October 28, 2022by cheree

I’m back for another Colour Consultant run with a new Dulux look.  It’s such a buzz being back on the shop floor, helping people with their colour schemes and upcoming summer projects.  

Interestingly enough, what I’m noticing in my second season, is a recurring pattern of questions and responses from our Bunnings customers. In the next few posts, I thought I would highlight some common misgivings regarding painting and colour.

One of the most common responses after a customer selects a colour and I tell them, please test your choice, is, “I don’t have time to test this paint, or it’s only paint.  If I don’t like it, I will re-paint it.”

My inner voice is screaming, “but do you have the time or money to re-paint if your first guess is not successful. Which 8 out of 10 times it will not be”.  My outer voice (much more polite) response is not even a seasoned Colour Consultant would ever consider painting a wall without testing a couple of choices first.  

So, dear reader, I’m going to explain why it’s crucial to test paint and how to test colour like a pro! 

Here are the most important reasons why we test paint: 

  • To get an accurate read if the colour relates to our soft furnishings, such as our upholstery and curtains. 
  • To check if our colour works with any hard fixtures (items that are not easily moved or replaced) such as hardware floor, carpet, tiles, etc.
  • To see if there are any underlying undertones (secondary colours) with our chosen colour.
  • Lastly, to notice if there are any other influences that may alter the colour, such as the greenery from the outside trees, the afternoon sun, shadows from the external overhang, etc.

I’ve seen all kinds of fascinating ways people go about testing paint, but this one seems the most common.  If you want to lose your marbles, painting up every test pot you own, side by side, is a good way to do it! 

Why is this not an effective way to test colours?  Because it tells us zip! Firstly, the tests are relating to the old wall colour, so you cannot get an accurate read on your test.  Secondly, you can’t move the colours around to see what any of your choices relate to. 


Here is the correct way to test paint:

  • Paint an A3 card with your chosen colour and leave a white border around the colour.  Again, this is, so you are not comparing to the old colour, and avoids the old wall colour poking through your tester.
  •  Move the colour board close to what you are testing – do not leave the test board hanging in the middle of the room.
  • Hold the board vertically if you are choosing wall colour, trim, or doors.
  • Hold the board horizontally if you are choosing colour for your cabinets or floor.
  • However, the colour is applied, hold the board in this position. 
  • If you are testing colours outside, rinse and repeat the above process.

Thanks again for joining me this month.  I hope this post has been helpful.  Let me know if you have any painting questions or concerns; I would love to help! 

See you in November with other paint responses from the shop floor.