08:37AM | 07/14/01
Member Since: 07/13/01
1 lifetime posts
I've heard that painting one wall with a diluted paint color (to make it lighter) will keep the room from being too dark. Is this generally recommended? I'm painting my bathroom, which has a window, and I'm concerned the color of blue I picked may make the room a bit dark. Any suggestions?


01:58PM | 07/14/01
Member Since: 09/01/00
312 lifetime posts
Hmmmm,diluting paint to make it lighter?I don't know about that,but I learn something new all the time.I too have a bath on the north side of the house with one window.If I were to paint it,and I wanted blue, I would have to use a very pale blue or live with a darker bath.In the past I've painted the walls white and used a dark colored border paper along the ceiling.If you match the border color with a bath mat and shower curtain you add color without giving up the scarce light.

Jay J

11:40AM | 07/15/01
Member Since: 10/26/00
782 lifetime posts
Hi CountryGirl,

Painting a room with a LIGHT(er) color will make the room seem LARGER. That's the only theory I know of about light and dark colors.

Use a LIGHT PAINT (not water) to lighten the paint. (Water will dilute the paint and weaken it.)

As far as WHICH color to pick, that's a personal choice. My best to ya and hope this helps.

Jay J -Moderator


04:05AM | 07/16/01
Member Since: 03/13/00
1675 lifetime posts
I agree that it could help the room seem lighter if you lighten one wall. And you're entitled to have your rooms any color or shade you like. The only advice I would give is that it's difficult to make a "clean" break between colors or shades on adjoining walls. So, don't make the one wall a bunch different. The difference should be subtle.


10:28AM | 07/23/01
Member Since: 11/14/00
333 lifetime posts
The word choice you used is awkward and ambiguous. If, as someone else interpreted, you mean "diluted" in that you add water or thinner to the paint, doing so will not change the color. It will merely make it cover the previous layer of paint less effectively: say, three coats to do the work of two undiluted coats. The pigments in the paint will remain the same color unless you add more pigment to lighten or darken it.

If, instead, you mean "tone the shade of pigment down a few steps on the color slip" so as to change the pigment formula you add to the paint at the store, then doing so is an accepted method of reducing the impact of uniform colors that seem a bit "much:" most commonly extremely light or extremely dark predominent colors on expansive, unbroken walls with no doors or windows. It is more common to instead choose an entirely different but complementary "accent color" to break up the monotony of a very light or very dark (or overly uniform) predominent color.

I have done so in my bedroom in the reverse direction: painted one unbroken wall a sharp, vivid, dark, Mayan Red color to break up the monotony of the lighter, neutral shades on the other walls. It looks phenomenal and always draws a compliment. However, the very same Mayan red color on all the walls would make the room look like a cave. So you might try using dark paint on only one wall and stiching with lighter paint on the others.

Doing so can also be done where light hits different walls differently. Sometimes the exact same shade will look darker if the wall is blocked from natural light and the other walls are immuninated with natiural light. Same thing on the exterior for North (typically no direct sun) vs. South (lots of direct sun) walls: use a lighter shade on the North side than on the South side so as to create a uniform color appearance.

[This message has been edited by Lawrence (edited July 23, 2001).]


06:03AM | 07/25/01
Member Since: 10/19/98
223 lifetime posts
Two things to consider about "diluting"

1. Diluting with water will not give you a lighter color, ie won't turn navy blue into pastel blue. BUT it will make an interesting change. You have a blue 'wash' which some people find attractive. Its a faux painting technique.

2. To lighten your regular color will take a lot of base paint. Get a gallon of the same base as your regular color. Then mix only 1 pint (more or less) of the regular color in it. You read it correctly. This isn't guess work. I had to do this with some paint my wife picked out for our kids' bathroom. After the first coat she realized it was too much. When I mixed it I thought a pint was not enough and added more. It was lighter, but not by much. In fact, start with a half pint and try that first.

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