Decorating With Paint Chips!

29 Mar

Sometime around 2009 I noticed a tiny trend developing in the world of home decor:  paint chips.  Free, colorful, and ultra Do-It-Yourself, it seemed like just the kind of thing that blogs, 20-somethings, and parents would love. And they do. And so do I.

Lovely. Just lovely. I adore the texture and the little pins tacking the chips to the wall. (image via katharinakrug)

Below are a few really interesting projects around the home that incorporate paint chips.  You can admire them, try one yourself, or scoff at the results…it’s up to you.  If you do want to give one of these colorful projects a try, the only thing you have to lose is a white wall and some pride as you stand at the Benjamin Moore/Home Depot/Duron trying not to look like you’re grabbing 600 swatches from the wall. (I’ve done it a million times, and trust me, it gets easier.)

Paint Chip Murals

Two paint chip murals of famous people: Marilyn and Abe. Both images via Apartment Therapy.

Apartment Therapy wrote about this mural and this mural a few years back. The image of a pixelated Marilyn Monroe is burned into my brain now; it’s a phenomenally creative, well-executed project.  The Abe piece is actually painted squares, but can be accomplished in the same manner as Marilyn if you switch up the method a little bit.


Rainbow Wall

Two very different spaces employing similar techniques. Image on L via CozyLittleCave. Image on R via DesignSponge.

Cozy Little Cave did an attic renovation and used paint chips to transform the hideous stairway into a bright, kind of crazy/kind of fun passageway.  All they used was whole, uncut paint chips and several cans of spray adhesive.  The blue/green/yellow image, from Design Sponge, just uses a ton of analogous colors to create a unified, flowing backdrop against the otherwise bland entertainment wall: super contemporary but it has a lightness to it. If you like these, check out this wall I blogged about a while back.


Framed Art

I came across these just last week, and I really like the simplicity and clean lines of these pieces.

I love the refined feel of these. Definitely the most grown up of all the paint chip projects! (image via Zipper 8 Design)

These are made from Benjamin Moore chips and are sold by Zipper 8 Design in…you guessed it…their Etsy shop. Head on over to grab some of your own. Or, make them!


Let me know if you are aware of any neat paint chip projects…or if you take on one yourself!  Happy swatch collecting!


Design consultations for all styles and budgets: JGB Interiors.

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6 Responses to “Decorating With Paint Chips!”

  1. the organic artist March 29, 2011 at 2:18 PM #

    I just love these paint chips, it reminds me of when I was little I use to go to the race track with my Mom and Grandma. I would busy myself with picking up the different colored tickets that people threw on the ground. When I had a huge stack of them then I would create my “art”!

    Just beautiful!

    • jgbinteriors March 29, 2011 at 2:22 PM #

      That’s such a neat memory — thanks for sharing! Collecting found objects is really inspirational. My husband’s uncle collects the inside of security envelopes — there are so many patterns to notice!

  2. Becca May 9, 2011 at 8:23 PM #

    Do you have any idea where we can get “intructions” on how to make a mural like this? I love them and would adore having one in my own home!!

    • jgbinteriors May 10, 2011 at 11:23 AM #

      Hi Becca,

      You can follow the links on those murals for some basic instruction, but basically is all boils down to being able to pixelate a photo (or another image) down to so few pixels that it’s simple to recreate. Then, you have to get it down to so few colors that it’s possible to recreate with your own supplies. Once you have the magic combination of a low number of pixels (which are now your color squares) and a smaller range of shades, you work on recreating it in a grid system.

      I believe you can download Photoshop for free for 30 days, or, you can purchase a program like Adobe Photoshop Elements for much cheaper than the full version.

      Good luck! I tried starting one of these projects with a photo of our cat when I had a newborn, and needless to say I lasted about 30 minutes before I gave up 🙂

  3. Athena June 27, 2013 at 5:51 PM #

    Do you have any idea what color/brand that wall is in the final picture – the one with the blue-gray room? The etsy website you linked to is closed. Thanks.

    • jgbinteriors June 29, 2013 at 1:03 PM #

      Hi Athena. I have no idea, but I would look at Benjamin Moore’s Mt. Rainier Gray and the other 2129’s. Good luck! –Jessica

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