Try it on for Size
When you think that you've really chosen your perfect color, buy a pint of paint to do a test patch. This will prove to be excellent insurance for less than $10.00. Paint a 12-48" square on a board or directly on your wall. Look at it during the day, morning, evening, and night. How does it look with with the room's flooring, wallcoverings, and fabric choices? If it isn't right, get another pint and try again. We like to test three colors at once to save time. You'll undoubtedly find the right color.
See the Plane
For the most accurate color representation, view paint samples vertically (up against the wall) and view carpet samples set flat on the floor. If you do this, you'll see how the colors will look when they're applied to your space.
Once you've gotten your test sample up on the wall, notice whether the color you're testing might be adversly affected by other colors in a room. For example, if your room is currently painted pink and your test patch is beige, it is likely that the pink will reflect onto the beige, changing the color. The same would go for blue or yellow. Or if there are colored curtains on the windows, their color will reflect onto your new paint. To get the best idea of how the room will look. place the painted sample up on the wall and place the flooring samples on the floor. Test the color in a room with the same exposure to sunlight. Find a room that is neutral.
Let It Dry
Wet paint color often looks different from dry paint. Don't panic when you first see the paint applied to the wall. Let it dry, then check it with your other samples (fabric, tiles, carpet) to decide if it looks right. Paint can also look out of place in an empty room. Bring in a few room elements (a chair, painting, or window treatment) to see how it all works together.
Always Have White Around
Having some extra white paint, carefully sealed in a container, can never hurt. Use it to lighten some paint that's too dark. Or use it to dilute your wall color by 3/4 for use on the ceiling. Just make sure to use the same kind of paint (flat latex for example), mix thoroughly, and make enough of the new color to finish the project. It will be impossible to mix up more later.
Give It Time
Getting used to a new room color might take a few days. A new bold color may seem overwhelming at first. Put some furniture, flooring, and fabric in the room. You'll probably be pleasantly surprised to see that your new color harmonizes with other room elements.