Choosing Theater Room Paint Colors

So you’re lucky enough to have a home theater. While your first concern might be for the acoustics of the room, it’s important to carefully consider your color choices, too. Theater room paint colors and finishes can, believe it or not, make or break your viewing experience.

First, lets talk about color. Using deep, dark colors will maximize contrast and get you the best picture quality. Black has been the standard for ages, but can be hard to decorate around (and paint over, if you decide to change the room’s purpose in the future.) Good alternatives are charcoal gray or chocolate brown.

What about a rich maroon, navy blue, or hunter green? Better think again. Home theater colors with visible red, blue, or green overtones can reflect back onto the screen, distorting color. You paid a bundle for that high-def TV. Do you really want everything on the screen to have a pink, blue, or green tint? Didn’t think so. If you want to add a little bit of color, use it for furnishings and trims; just keep it away from the screen!

If your theater isn’t just a theater, but also a game room, play area, or other multi-purpose space, super dark colors might not be as appealing to you. If that’s the case, your home theater colors might include caramel, beige, or other earthy neutrals (avoid white!). You’ll sacrifice some viewing quality, but have more decorating choices.

Another option, if you want your theater to do double duty, is to add color with accessories. Flat-finish or textured upholstery won’t alter reflect much light, no matter what the color. Luxurious burgundy couches with velvet pillows might be just the touch you need to create a welcoming space for both movie-goers and casual guests. Lighting can also brighten up a dark room. Look for amber or red-tinged bulbs for a soft, inviting glow- just make sure you turn them off when the movie starts!

Upscale home theater room.

Finish is just as important as color. Home theater paint shouldn’t reflect a lot of light. Flat and satin/eggshell finishes are the best. Avoid semi-gloss and gloss paints. The light from the screen will reflect back from the paint and distract you from your movie.

Now that we’ve talked about paint color ideas for your movie room, consider doing a little extra prep work to optimize your viewing experience. Carefully seal/caulk any cracks and gaps in the walls and trim; trapping the sound in the room will create an enhanced acoustic experience. Use a tinted primer, too- the darker the better. It will help you get the richest, darkest shade with the least amount of work.

Theater room paint colors can reflect your tastes- to an extent. Just keep in mind that it’s a functional room, and the paint you choose can have a huge impact on the success of your home theater. If you really want your personality to shine through, carefully chosen accents can enhance the space without taking any attention away from the screen.

The best paint colors from Sherwin Williams – “Paint Color Cheat Sheets” – A great short-cut to finding a perfect paint color.

Find answers to your paint color questions.

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