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Choosing a Beachy Bedroom Paint Color

Two years. Several test runs. Countless paint chips. And one day of painting. That’s what it took to finally choose — and put up — new paint for my bedroom at the Cottage. The walls have been white with white wainscoting for a decade. It was so time for a change — and a time for something more me.

Choosing a paint color is a far more intimate and important thing than I ever took it for. You’ll see it every day, and that could brighten — or darken — your day. Okay, maybe I am being a little mellow dramatic, but the wrong color doesn’t make everything less appealing. For the record, it wasn’t an easy or simple thing to choose.

I was looking for a serene color with a beachy feel to it that wasn’t too dark. Choosing the one I went with was a big process, but in the end I was left with the exact color I wanted — no second thoughts at all. So the process? Totally worth the effort.

The color I chose was Benjamin Moore’s 1521 – Nature’s Essentials. It’s a taupe-ish, khaki-ish color perfect for the beach sensibilities of the Cottage.

Still, this is nowhere near the color I expected to go up on the walls. Initially, I was looking for a very pale spa blue or a pale green. Good thing I tested the colors on the walls though. Things totally changed though after reviewing the colors in different lights and also comparing them to the sign above. It was important to me that the sign fit in with the wall color.

Nature’s Essentials is just what I was seeking. And I love it so much that I am contemplating painting my house the same color.

So, how did I choose a beachy paint color?

  1. Check the Choices – I started by looking through magazines, checking paint chips and eying colors everywhere. This allowed me to narrow the choices down slightly.
  2. Narrow the Field – Now that you have a ballpark of colors, it’s time to narrow it down to just a few. Look through paint chips and make a list of no more than 4-5 colors that could be a good fit.
  3. Take a Test Run – Before I switched directions, I thought Benjamin Moore’s Silver Sage was going to be the right color for the room. But once I had a sample on the wall, I realized that it was really too dark for the space. That’s when I started seeking lighter colors.
  4. Check Light and Dark – You won’t just be looking at the color in shade or bright sunlight or darkness. The color needs to be just right in all three. So be sure to check the paint chips in several locations (or at different times of the day) to try different lighting scenarios.

What color is your bedroom?


Saturday 5th of September 2020

I recently painted my west facing master bedroom Nature's Essentials and I love it. It's kind of a sophisticated taupe/ sand color but it's beautiful. As I was painting I kept thinking it was too dark but it isn't at all. Once the room was finished it looked so light and airy and refreshed. It reflects 66% of light so it's perfect for just about any room in the house.

Sarah Walker Caron

Monday 7th of September 2020

I am so glad you commented here, Leah! I wrote this post awhile back but have been thinking about paint and paint colors as I prepare to buy a house. I do love Nature's Essentials too -- but this reminded me that it's okay to take it slow with painting and look for the color that brings the right airy vibe to the room.

merry Johnsey

Wednesday 25th of June 2014

Hi Sara!

Can you tell me a beautiful/soft aqua/teal/turquoise that would go with your Natures Essentials color? Thank you!! Merry

Sarah W. Caron

Thursday 3rd of July 2014

Hi Merry, I highly suggest going to a Benjamin Moore seller and picking up some samples to try out. They have some fabulous little pots so you can take it home and paint a swatch to find the right one for you. That said, I am partial to Jack Frost, also from Benjamin Moore.

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