Here There and Everywhere

Expat wanderer

Watching Paint Dry

‘Watching Paint Dry’ is synonymous with BORING, but watching paint dry is exactly what I am doing. Yes. Seriously.

Many moves ago, I was about to paint a room a color I loved when a thought struck me – maybe I ought to preview the paint, paint a small area and see how it looked when it dried. Thank God I followed that tiny nagging thought. Bought the smallest amount I could, which I believe was a gallon, painted a small portion of the wall – and was horrified to see what I had thought would be a subtle color turn a very purple kind of pink.

Now, paint manufacturers have done a very smart thing – they have small, one pint containers that can be made up in any color. Paint changes with the light; I’m trying to find a warm neutral to cover the too-brown caramel, so I had several made up, and I’ve daubed the walls in different places, different lights. I want to see how they look when the paint dries.

The two larger ones are the two that I liked the best, but I want to keep watching, see what grows on me. The first one on the left, Early Sunset, is the one I thought would be my favorite, but it went totally neutral, blah, on the wall. There was one paint I liked, but I hated the name, Muffin Mix. The two front runners are Lilting Laughter and Abalone Pink.

Family Room (three different walls)

Living Room (living room is too dark!)

Dining Room is even darker:

What is interesting to me is how different the same background color looks in every photo – you wouldn’t even think it is the same paint if you didn’t know. That’s why I test. I want to see how it changes in different light.

I’m going to do some under-daubing in dusty rose and terra-cotta, then sponge over the daubs with the lighter neutral, hoping to get a Mediterranean / Tuscan kind of effect. The house is ‘blonde’ brick with white columns, so a Mediterranean (or Arabian Gulf) villa look would work for us, and help us adjust to our new location.

April 5, 2010 - Posted by | Arts & Handicrafts, ExPat Life, Experiment, Living Conditions, Moving, Renovations, Technical Issue, Values, Work Related Issues


  1. I like the one in the first picture, second raw, second color from the right. What is that color?

    And I like the current living room color!

    Comment by Yousef | April 5, 2010 | Reply

  2. The whole house is currently this very dark honey caramel – but for me, it’s too much grey, too much brown. I need more light! I will check the color for you, Youself. I know the first color in the second row is Bella Pink, but I am not so sure of the one you like. I know it is by Behr. The V’s are Valspar.

    Comment by Intlxpatr | April 5, 2010 | Reply

  3. Oh, they are “V’s”?? I was sure they were hearts b/c you are loving fixing up your new home πŸ™‚ Have fun with it! I love to paint and love the change you can get for a relatively small investment!

    Comment by Grammy | April 5, 2010 | Reply

  4. I had my room painted in a dark blue many years ago and I want to change it to something more green. a not so light shade of green.. Any suggestions?

    Comment by Yousef | April 5, 2010 | Reply

  5. “Muffin Mix”? looooool. love the paint testing – and the patience that comes with it! – and big thumbs up to the Mediterreanean look!

    Comment by adiamondinsunlight | April 5, 2010 | Reply

  6. Yousef, the sample you like is by Behr, called Possibly Pink. It actually isn’t bad, just maybe a little too pink for AdventureMan.

    If you want a new green, there are a lot of great possibilites. I prefer very blue greens, myself, but if you like darks, a gorgeous rich deep Hunter green, which is a blue green with a lot of black in it. Visit some of the Kuwait paint souks and pick up some paint ‘chips’, or find the exact shade of green you yearn for and have one of the paint shops that has a computerized match-maker make up a sample. Try it on several different places on your wall, and watch it a couple days, see how it changes with the light. That way you won’t be stuck with something you HATE.

    Grammy, LLOOLL, yes, V for Valspar. Wish you would come help me paint! I don’t mind painting, but moving, painting, unpacking, new life, it’s all a bit much at one time. I like to take things more thoughtfully, a more measured pace. I am feeling rushed! Fortunately, AdventureMan wants to kick back a little and we can’t get in the house anyway. πŸ™‚

    LittleDiamond – It IS funny, but the names of paints can really intrigue or turn you off. It’s like AdventureMan said he didn’t want a house on Noriega, because of the name, LLOOLL! But I know what he means. I really like our address. πŸ™‚

    Comment by intlxpatr | April 5, 2010 | Reply

  7. Great advice. We always had a painter come to our place and paint our rooms. It was always a hurried process with rushed decisions where you had to choose between a couple of colors on your wall (even before they dry up) and you’re stuck with what you chose for a couple of years.

    I like what you’ve said, and I think I’ll do just that. I know Abyaat has that machine you mentioned, I’ll go pick some colors and do the testing thing and take my time to decide. Hopefully I’ll get around to it soon πŸ™‚


    Comment by Yousef | April 6, 2010 | Reply

  8. Yousef, you could have some fun with this. You could look for a deep blue green and get a high gloss, and then put a glaze over it. It would be very shiny, but also beautiful and a little edgy. πŸ™‚ I think there are some painters in Kuwait who can do those high end finishes – or you can try doing it yourself, experiment on one wall. Deep colors are very trendy right now, although there is a reverse trend back to more pastel walls that seems to be getting started . . .

    A deep blue green with high gloss could be very masculine, very energetic and conceptual . . . but most important – have fun with it. πŸ™‚

    Comment by intlxpatr | April 7, 2010 | Reply

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