Can I mix together 2 paint colors????

jockewingMarch 14, 2009

I have been agonizing for months looking for a blue green for my living room. I had tried SW Oyster Bay in small spots and tons of other blue greens. Nothing seemed to work in my lighting. I thought I was going to have to give up and settle for a beige/taupe, but I decided to give Oyster Bay one more try. I painted one spot - YUCK! Painted one whole section of wall - hmmmmmmm..... Painted 3/4ths of the room - starting to LOVE it!! After sleeping on it, I thought it looked a little bit too blue, so I pored through all my chips in my collection and found an old SW color, "Plaza Suite" that was very similar but a little more green.

I painted the Plaza Suite on the other half of the room, and I like them both! I have finally found colors that give me the feeling of the paint inside of a Restoration Hardware (Silver Sage doesn't do that for me at home for some reason). Although cool colors, it is somehow slightly warm and cozy, and has a creamy feeling. It is sort of an aqua, but "dirty" enough to not look feminine and easter-eggy. It is warm enough that all sorts of art work looks good against it.

I really think if I mixed them I would get the "PERFECT" color. Can this be done? Would I mix and then get the paint store to optical match? Would I have to buy all that I need and then mix all at once so the ratios are correct? Could I get the paint store to put a shot of green into the Oyster Bay formula?

Please help me! I took a few pictures, but for some reason this color does not read correctly at all in photos, but I'll still post if you want.

Also, can I get SW colors made in Aura? I figure if the colors look so good in glossy SW sample paint, they should look amazing in velvety matte Aura! I also see that SW is having a big sale. The sales guy told me Cashmere is 40% off and it gives a great finish. Duration is also on sale. Are these SW paints any good? I want matte and this will be going in a kitchen and laundry, too, so it should be washable.

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Mixing paints is tricky business. I don't know how you figure you can mix them and come up with the perfect color. There are many different pigments in the paints and when you mix them, Lord only knows what you'll come up with. Have you tried some of the BM colors? I used 99% BM paints but for my Master Bedroom I went with a SW because BM just didn't have the exact gray/blue I wanted. I just had BM mix it using their paint. I'm sure if you keep sampling, you'll find the color you want.

    Bookmark   March 14, 2009 at 11:56PM
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I might take the two paints you have and mix a small amount of each to get the exact color you want and then take that color to paint store and have them match it.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2009 at 12:31AM
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We did exactly what threedgrad suggested for our exterior house color. I agonized for weeks, our house was a patchwork of all the colors I'd tried - I finally decided what I was looking for was somewhere between BM Sea Pine and Stratton Blue - so I started mixing them in a solo cup and then painting scraps of wood. It only took a couple of tries - when I found what I thought I liked, I threw it up on the house and it was PERFECT! So I took the wood scrap to BM and had it matched, and now have an exterior that is painted with "Sea Stratton." ;-)

    Bookmark   March 15, 2009 at 8:20AM
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I agree with threedgrad and kpaquette, that's what we did. We had a lot of paint left from various projects and thought we could get away without having to buy more for painting the bathroom. Didn't work out as planned but it gave us an idea of what colors and shades wouldn't work.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2009 at 8:44AM
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*** I really think if I mixed them I would get the "PERFECT" color. Can this be done? ***

Absolutely, it's done all the time. Take an empty container and using small amounts start with a 1/2 & 1/2 mix. Test it (don't forget 2 coats and let them dry) then adjust from there, more of one or the other as your eye dictates.

*** Would I mix and then get the paint store to optical match? ***

If you're able to come up with THE color, then yes, have your paint store match it because it's impossible to create it in large quantities by continually mixing your 2 colors.

*** Could I get the paint store to put a shot of green into the Oyster Bay formula? ***

Your paint gurus should be willing to adjust your paint color for you with a shot of green or whatever. It might get you to THE color or it might not. I have a long standing realtionship with my paint store so they're willing to adjust and re-adjust for me.

*** Also, can I get SW colors made in Aura? ***

Yes, sort of. Any Ben Mo color can be made in Aura but a SW color will have to be done by a computer match. The base paints are not the same so it will never be exact but it will be close enough for most eyes.

*** Are these SW paints any good? I want matte ***

Can't comment on SW - never used it but lots of people love it. Ben Mo makes Regal matte paint also - love it, have it in my house although not in my kitchen. Matte is always less washable than eggshell which is less washable than pearl which is less washable than.... you get the idea!

    Bookmark   March 15, 2009 at 11:01AM
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Lots of good advice.
I'd add that changing the finish will change how the color reads in the room. Usually, the matte version will seem deeper than the glossier ones. (And vice versa...a semi-gloss finish lightens most colors by several shades.) You might like to have a quart of whatever you choose mixed first to see how it looks in the matte finish.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2009 at 11:06AM
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Yes, absolutely, you can do this.

I wanted a rusty red-brown in our pool room, and could NOT find the right color in any of the SW or BM fandecks. I went through six sample quarts before I came to my senses.

Using a measuring tablespoon, I started mixing the colors. I kept careful notes of my "recipes" for each color, and eventually I created EXACTLY what I wanted.

I then painted a large sample on the wall to make sure that the color worked in the day and evening light. (Don't skip this step!)

Then I painted a 3" square of white cardboard and took it to my wonderful SW guys, who put it under the optical reader, came up with a formula, and made me several gallons of my own custom color.

It's perfect, I love it, it's mine.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2009 at 11:27AM
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Yep, I did our old front door color that way, but not even with regular paint. I used the little craft paint bottles to mix and create the color I wanted. It was perfect!

    Bookmark   March 15, 2009 at 1:35PM
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I've used SW Duration and it had great coverage. It seemed a bit thinner than the BM paints I usually use, though. That can be good for some people, although I had to be careful about runs and drips at first until I got used to it. Aura has a new matte finish especially for kitchens and baths, so that might work for you. The SW sample paints are only a satin finish, I think, so not overly glossy. I will say color matching from brand to brand does not seem to be perfect. I've had several BM colors mixed in SW sample quarts to test the shade and it turned out just a bit different when I bought the BM gallon. If you're going to create your own special blend and have it optically matched, then either store should be able to do a good job.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2009 at 2:01PM
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Ahhh...fond memories of my Dad mixing his own paint in our basement. I loved watching him add all the colorants one by one. Yes, you too can become a paint color creator. You could even come up with your own unique name for it. Good Luck and I hope you post the result.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2009 at 2:12PM
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Thanks for the advice!!!! I tried a little test of mixing the two colors and I think I am getting close to perfection! I love the feeling of Oyster Bay, but I find it a tad too "blue" and cool. I wanted a TAD more green and a little warmth. I might even try mixing in a bit of a "greener" color such as a drop of Svelte Sage to see if I can get what I'm looking for. I am so excited that I am finally getting close after MONTHS and close to $200 in testers. I am almost getting embarassed to go in the paint store anymore!

Kpaquette! Please pics of "Stratton Sea"!!!! I tried both of those colors-Stratton Blue was too bright and almost "neon" (I found all 3 of those related colors: Palladian, Wythe, and Stratton Blue so intense), and Sea Pine a little too dark and gray. I bet they'd make a beautiful mix!

It's kind of funny I have 4 fan decks and I can't find the color I want in all those! What is wrong with me!

So would I just paint my final mix onto a piece of white cardboard and bring it in?

    Bookmark   March 15, 2009 at 11:15PM
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Sure you can. I've done it before and I just did it for my entry. In fact, I just mixed a Valspar paint with a Behr paint. I'm sure people would have said don't do it. It came out exactly the way I wanted it.

One caveatt: You can get more mixed if you run out because computers color match. But if you mix a semi-gloss with a satin (or similar), I don't know how you're going to get a match if you run out, so be sure you made enough to last.

    Bookmark   March 15, 2009 at 11:43PM
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I just painted my daughters room mixing 3 left-over colors. BM Silver Marlin, BM Cement & BM Misty grey. Turned out very close to RH Silver Sage but a bit more blue. Looks great.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2009 at 12:25AM
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Yes, all you need is a good dry sample on a piece of cardboard.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2009 at 1:59AM
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OK, so here's a question---

Since the two different colors I'm mixing have 5 different pigments between them, am I really creating my own full spectrum paint?

I realize this isn't totally true, as one of the colors has black as one of the pigments, but Oyster Bay is New Gold, Blue, and Deep Red. Plaza Suite is Black, New Gold, and New Green. What if Plaza Suite had Umber instead of Black? Would I now have a true full spectrum paint? I never really completely understood, but is full spectrum any different from regular paint beside the fact that it contains a greater number of pigments?

I guess when I get it matched it probably won't be full spectrum anymore though, unless the optical thing picks up all the pigments.

    Bookmark   March 16, 2009 at 5:51AM
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jock, you asked: "So would I just paint my final mix onto a piece of white cardboard and bring it in?"

Don't forget to paint a nice big sample of your creation on your walls and look at it under day and evening light, just to be sure.

I don't know the answer to your question about FS paint, but I thought I would guide you to a discussion of FS paint that appeared in the Paint Forum last year...

Here is a link that might be useful: Paint Forum thread on FS Paints

    Bookmark   March 16, 2009 at 7:18AM
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