Choosing paint

The great thing about the scale of a tiny house is that you can afford (both in money and time) to experiment with finishes you might not otherwise use. Knowing that, I really wanted to use a natural lime based paint on this project. I love the brushed, mottled texture of the finish. But after much research I just couldn’t pull the trigger – a tiny house is a hardworking space. Almost every wall in our build will see heavy use – splatter from the kitchen, shoe scuffing under the desk, water from leaning against the walls around the bed that double as our couch. Yes, there are finish coats that allow for a scrubbable surface, but I knew I wanted a bright white, and wasn’t sure I’d see enough texture in the paint to warrant the possible trade offs in durability. So I’m saving lime wash for a future project.

I ended up going with latex paint from Benjamin Moore. After many years of trying to make box store paint match good paint colors, it was time to just spend the extra $20 a gallon for the real deal. There are levels of quality in all things, and the higher-end box store paint can be good enough, as it does have a lot of solids, but I find that there’s a real difference in reliability of tint when you go to a real paint shop. Cheap paint often use fewer pigments to mix a color, relying on black to darken tones which can leave them looking muddy. And box store machines aren’t always well calibrated to get a clean color match.

I wound up going with the Regal line from Ben Moore after the salesperson assured me I’d only need one coat (I still needed two) and was very happy with the quality. My customer satisfaction was helped by the fact that it was”Donut Wednesday” when I picked up the paint.

We’re using White Dove, which I think is one of the most reliably good warm whites available. (There are a LOT of white paints out there.) Alabaster from Sherwin Williams is a good match in cheaper paint. Excited to share more photos of the finished interior soon!

x Liz

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