Never Forget Your Paint Color Again

 A totally simple, yet totally genius way to make sure you never forget what paint color you used in a room -- without having to save all those swatches!

A couple of years ago, we had our kitchen and family room {which are one big room across the back of the house} repainted. We wanted a pale yellow, and it took about 2 weeks and approximately 972 different paint samples to pick a color that we loved. The painters came and painted, and it was gorgeous. You want to know what color we chose?

Yeah, so do we.

See, I saved the leftover paint, like I always do, so that if we ever needed to do any touch-ups, we’d have the extra paint and/or know exactly what color we needed to get. But then the hubs went all gung-ho cleaning out the garage one weekend, and threw out all the extra paint. Which means that, although our walls could desperately need a touch-up, we have no earthly idea what paint color we used. 


So in order to get paint, I think we’re going to have to go behind the couch or entertainment center and chip off a hunk of paint and take it with us to have the paint store match the color. Should be interesting. If it wasn’t for how big the room is {and what a pain in the arse it would be to paint around all the cabinets in the kitchen}, I would just say “to heck with it” and repaint the whole darn thing.

Now, because I love you all so much and don’t want you to have to deal with this drama {can you say “#firstworldproblems”??}, I am going to share one of those “Why the heck didn’t I think of that?!?” tips from {who else?} Martha Stewart.


When you finish painting, write the brand and color name of the paint on a piece of painter’s tape and stick it on the back of a light switch plate in the room. **UPDATE: I have had several readers suggest also including the number as well as the color name, as color names tend to change.**

A totally simple, yet totally genius way to make sure you never forget what paint color you used in a room -- without having to save all those swatches!

Seriously?!? How genius is that?!? Darn that Martha for making the rest of us feel like dummies all the time…

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  • Nathalie
    September 21, 2013 at 9:39 am

    See now, my anal self doesn’t think Martha’s all that on It with this one. The problem I see with just the brand and color name is that color names change, sometimes for the same color that is maintained in the season’s line up of colors. An but reintroduced under a different name. Anyway, why just put the dang color swatch behind the switchplate and mark the paint finish as well. Although it’s usually obvious whether it’s satin or ultra gloss, to some folks, it isn’t or you just can’t remember. And if the color is discontinued, you have the swatch for color matching.

    • Jenn
      September 21, 2013 at 10:05 am

      That’s a good idea about the color swatch! I think the paint companies are able to look up in their computer whether or not a paint color changed names {I actually just had this happen to me at Sherwin-Williams a few weeks ago and they knew that the paint color I asked for by name was now called something else}, but you can never be too careful! And a very good point about the finish as well — sometimes it’s hard to differentiate between eggshell and satin!

  • Fisherman's Wife Furniture
    September 21, 2013 at 9:54 am

    Brilliant! I do think I will add the number to the color name. I use all Benjamin Moore paint and they seem to stay consistent with color names but just in case, I’ll add the number. I also have paint stir sticks dipped in my paint colors with the name and number. I keep it in my truck in case I come across a great fabric, piece of furniture, etc and want to be sure my colors will coordinate.

  • Jenn
    September 21, 2013 at 10:08 am

    Martha’s original tip actually suggested using the number as well, I was just lazy when I did it for my husband’s office. 🙂 I LOVE your idea about the paint sticks dipped in your paint colors! I usually have the swatches in my purse for that same reason. 🙂

  • Leslie
    September 22, 2013 at 8:43 pm

    What a great idea! I’ve never thought to do this either, I found you on the blog hop. I am a new follower through Bloglovin. I hope your having a great weekend!

  • Tracie
    September 23, 2013 at 10:52 am

    That is pretty ingenious! We are about to re-do my son’s room (he’s 9 and still has blocks stenciled on his wall) and if I knew what color blue I used the first time, we could just paint over it! But no such luck 🙁 A complete paint re-do is happening soon! Where was this tip in 2004! LOL! I’ll definitely do save the paint name this time around!

  • Auntiepatch
    September 23, 2013 at 2:55 pm

    OMG! Genius! Just genius!

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