Question about making paint lighter

eriepatchNovember 7, 2006

Ok...I bought a quart of paint to try out a color for the back of some shelves. It's too dark.

Can I mix the quart with a quart of white to make it half as dark or is that too simple?

DH says I can't but he can't tell me how it sould be done either.


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Brushworks Spectacular Finishes

What base are you using? It should say on the can. Pastel, Mid-tone, Deep tint, etc.


    Bookmark   November 7, 2006 at 6:59PM
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It's Lowe's American Tradition Signature Eggshell Base 2

    Bookmark   November 7, 2006 at 9:50PM
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Ahh, Michael, so this is where you've been hiding! Figured you were busy doting on Ava (Miss you on the other side, but easy to understand how this is your 'turf' :) .

eriepatch: One method I use for altering latex paint is to use artist's acrylics, as they are heavily pigmented (Delta, DecoArt, at some hardware and all craft stores). I use the colors from the 'basic' spectrum. A 4oz bottle should be more than ample for a quart of paint. I'm a hobby artist and have no qualms about doing this (even with suede paint) but you have to be careful to go slowly, stir it well and test it dry. I like to make note of pigment I've added for future reference (because I'm neurotically detail oriented, but also in case I'll be using that mixture again later and need the 'formula' i.e. run out of paint, or have to do touchups later). If you want to lighten, get some artist's white and begin adding a few drops at a time to your quart, and stir it thoroughly. When you think you've stirred enough, stir it again for good measure (I use an old hand mixer), because it's easy to find streaks of artist's pigment that have not mixed in. After each time you add artist's acrylic, make note of how many drops you've added, then 'test' your new color on white posterboard or a stir stick. Be sure it's dry so you can see how it's really going to look (you can use a hairdryer at a distance). A bit tedious, but if you add too much at once you'll probably find you rapidly end up with 'milky', washed-out paint. Once you've reached the lightness level when the paint is dry, make sure you jot down on the can lid how many drops of artist's white you used. That way if you ever need to get more paint you've got your 'formula' on hand ;)

And a disclaimer ;) I've used this method on many projects (furniture, etc.) but not on a wall, always with generic latex paint (never with 'specialty' paints such as enamels).

    Bookmark   November 9, 2006 at 6:57AM
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