How to: Use the Colour Wheel to Mix Your Own Chalk Paint™ Colour

So what I’ve got here is my color called Giverny. It’s a nice, bright blue. If I was to put it anywhere along this here – this colour circle… there’s the blue, So is it near a green blue or is it nearer to a red blue? Well, it’s actually nearer to a green blue so I’m going to put it there. That’s where it would sit.

Now, the complementary of that – that means the opposite colour to that – is going to be about there. So there it’s opposite it. It’s about there. It’s going to be a brownish, sort of reddish, orange. It would normally be a darker colour.

I’m going to use my colour here which is called on Honfleur – it’s a rich brown. I’m going to put it there. It’s a sort of a chocolatey, warm chocolate brown.

Now if you mix complementaries – there’s one dark and one light, one warm and one cool. That’s a cool colour because it’s greener. This is a warm colour because it’s sort of redder.

So what I’m going to do now is to test what sort of ratio of the colour that I need and I’m just going to play. Is it lots and lots of blue colour? No, I think I want more of the brown. So I’m going to add more. In fact, it’s turning out to be lots of the brown. In fact, I might even need a little bit more brown. So quite a brownish colour.

Look at that! That’s mixing in to be a lovely colour. The reason it’s made a grey, or a slightly greenish grey, is because if you mix two complementaries – and if they’re perfect complementaries – when you mix them they will make a black.

Then if you add a little bit of white obviously you’ve got a grey but each complementary mix makes a different sort of black. It makes a different sort of grey. So the combinations are pretty much endless and many of them are very beautiful.

So I’ve finished painting this. I’m just letting it dry and when it’s dry, I’m going to be waxing it with the Clear Wax.

This is all about mixing paint and people are a bit afraid sometimes and really mixing paint is not difficult. It’s actually quite fun!

Learn how to use the colour wheel to mix colours from the Chalk Paint™ palette.

It’s easy to mix and combine paint if you know how colour works. Using a colour wheel can help you find your way. You can use it as a springboard to launch you into a whole world of colour. It will help you darken a colour, make a colour warmer or cooler, or to find colours that will complement each other (essential if you’re using more than one colour on your project!).

To help you get started, every Annie Sloan colour has been laid out on a colour wheel for you on the Chalk Paint™ colour card. There is also a handy colour wheel on each MixMat – a great tool in itself for mixing and experimenting with paint.

The Chalk Paint™ colour palette is intentionally limited. That’s because by simply making any of them paler, darker, warmer or cooler, you can create an infinite number of colours – and more importantly the perfect colour for your project.

Tips for Mixing Your own Chalk Paint™ colour

  1. If you wish to create your own colour, start out by mixing different paints together with your fingers on paper or on a MixMat.
  2. You don’t need much paint at all – use teaspoons or half teaspoons at a time. Once you’ve found the colour you want, you’ll be able to scale up to make larger quantities.
  3. Mix your paints in daylight. This will help you see how they will look in natural light – their character will change under artificial light.
  4. The three primary colours are opposite each other: red, yellow and blue.
  5. Tertiary colours (green, orange and purple) sit between them. You can make them by mixing primary colours together.
  6. To find a complementary colour, look at the other side of the colour wheel at its opposite.
  7. If you want clashing colours, use adjacent primary and secondary colours, such as Emperor’s Silk and Emile.
  8. You can lighten a colour by adding Old White.
  9. You can darken a colour by adding its complementary (for example, you can use a little Emile to darken English Yellow).

As you experiment with colour mixing, let go of any anxieties about making mistakes. This playful experimentation is a great way of learning. It will help you find the colours and colour combinations that suit you and your tastes. Besides, if it really does all go horribly wrong, you can always paint over any mistakes with ease.

Once you’re ready to get started, be sure to visit your local Annie Sloan Stockist to get all the supplies you need. Not only are they trained to advise you on colour selection, but supporting them means supporting a small independent business in your community.

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