Disclaimer: These pictures are horrendous. We have one window in our basement and it is really challenging to get adequate light that creates pictures that are decent. Keep this in mind as you scroll down - they range from okay to horrible.
These are the paint swatches my MIL and I picked up over the weekend:
Bluish-grays are impossible to work with. Impossible. I know I constantly complain about paint, but I just cannot find a color that looks good in our basement.
The paint chip in the lower right hand corner of the picture - "Yarmouth Blue" - had so much potential. When I put it on the walls of our basement, however, it looked horrible. On the white walls it was way too dark (clockwise from upper right: sunset wheat - what was I thinking?!, Yarmouth, Mt. Rainier gray, and oatmeal):
We need a much lighter paint color. The room is rather big and while we want to make the room feel a little warmer, this particular bluish-gray was just way too dark to cover all of the basement walls. We did, however, think it might work on one section that is covered with wood paneling. The paneling is painted a really, really light mauve (at least I think it's mauve). It's ugly. When I added the Yarmouth blue, it turned into a horrendous shade of light blue. I added primer to the wall with the hope that it might change the color of the paint. THANK GOD FOR PRIMER.
Unfortunately, this is one of the horrible pictures, but it should give you an idea of the contrast:
This picture shows five things:
1. The wall on the north side of the basement was anything but white. Check out the difference between the primer and the original paint color. Anyone who doubted this wall wasn't white should now be convinced of that fact.
2. Our wall has obvious scuff marks that demand some TLC in the form of some wood caulk, a little sanding, and a fresh coat of paint. Those brown splotches at the top of the picture? Yeah, they're all over that wall.
3. Wet paint definitely reflects light.
4. Primer = Good.
5. I need to work on my photography skills.
Here's a closeup of the paint with primer - the Yarmouth in this picture is actually fairly accurate. The paint looked pretty much the same when it was fully dry.
G came home and agreed it will work for the paneled wall. Now we just have a find a lighter hue that we can use on the other three walls. I'm going to Hirshfield's before I go to the gym tonight and I'm hoping my favorite color consultant is working. It would make things much easier for me if she could just recommend a few options so I don't end up coming home with umpteen paint chips again.