Archive for the ‘Los Angeles Homes’ category

Tips on Hiring a Painting Contractor

November 13, 2011

Hiring a Contractor

Ask for references. This is very important as it shows if their past clients were happy with the work performed, and the overall customer experience. Any professional painting contractor should be able to provide references.

Get a bid in writing and go over it thoroughly with the contractor. Not all bids are created equal. Some contractors exclude some costs and later charge these to you as extras. Find out exactly what the bid includes, a thorough bid with everything covered is what you are looking for. The more information provided here the better for both parties.

What prep work is included? Caulking, wall repairs, and filling nail holes, are the general steps you should see. Prep work is what makes a finish look great, and last many years. It is also very labor intensive and therefore time consuming.

How much will you be charged if the contractor encounters unforeseen problems? For example, removing wallpaper not installed correctly can cause damage to sheet rock. What might those charges run? Ask if they charge an hourly rate for extra work. Every successful painting contractor knows what their hourly costs are, and what they need to charge to make a profit. This should be given without hesitation when asked for. If they don’t know the answer to this simple question, chances are they haven’t been in business long, and most likely won’t be if you have a warranty claim to make.

Warranties. Does the contractor offer one?
Are they a licensed, bonded, fully insured company?
For example, Concepts In Color in Los Angeles is a licensed, bonded, fully insured company – offering free estimates for all house and commercial painting projects and stand by the work with a written guarantee.

In closing I would like to add, you must feel comfortable hiring a house painter. You are inviting them into your home or property so for peace of mind ensure there is a trust first. Knowing you can depend on a qualified professional helps ensure a successful project.

For More Info on hiring a painting contractor in Los Angeles, feel free to contact Matt at Concepts In Color

Los Angeles Exterior House Painting Advice

November 4, 2011

Everyone wants their home to be the envy of the street. Popular DIY shows spend countless hours and dollars working the landscaping and really trying to bring curb appeal to the property, but often the home itself is overlooked. Painting the home is an integral part of having that “pop” that sets your home apart. Not only is it important for aesthetics, but paint serves as a barrier between the elements and your investment. That’s why painting deserves star treatment!

Exterior painting allows you improve the appearance of your home and extend the life of its surfaces by many years. Only one coat of paint is usually needed on your home if it is not peeling or chalking, the substrate is in good condition and a change of color is not desired. Even the slightest color change will require two coats for optimal coverage. Two coats of paint are always preferred and often necessary. Several premium paints require two coats for their warranty to be effective. Different sheen’s and colors can also play a pivotal role in how long the life cycle of the painting job is going to last. Typically, paints with a flatter sheen are more porous and will fade quicker, while higher gloss paints tend to last longer. Darker colors also tend to fade sooner.

 

With a trained eye, you will be able to spot when your home needs a new paint job. If the paint is starting to get “chalky” (rubbing your hand on the surface leaves a chalky residue on your hand) it is time to paint! Putting this off now may mean more money later! When paint chalks, it is breaking down and no longer protecting your home the way it should. Peeling paint equals moisture problems. When paint peels, it allows moisture to come in contact with the substrate. It can also lead to additional damage to the remaining paint.

A good paint job will last anywhere from five to ten years. This depends on several factors: quality of the coating being applied, mil thickness of the paint, the substrate, but most importantly – THE PREPARATION! Proper preparation is the single most important part of any painting project. Any professional painter should be able to explain exactly what is going to take place during this process. I assure you preparation is 50% labor and 110% important to the outcome of the job.
Once the house is fully washed, scraped, sanded, caulked, primed and dry it is ready to receive paint. An important issue to keep in mind is the quality of the paint. Premium coating materials can leave you with a sense of “sticker shock” when comparing price per gallon. If you compare this price to the amount of labor involved to apply any coating, the pro’s outweigh the con’s.

The reality of all this is the homeowner needs to be informed, do their research and check to make sure they are getting what they pay for. The saying could not be more true, “You get what you pay for!” If you get three painting bids and the bottom line is drastically lower on one, throw it out! Make sure you are comparing apples to apples. Just because the least expensive painter assures he will do all the prep, doesn’t mean he will. A cheaper painter has to do the same amount of work a more expensive painter has to do so how come they are so cheap? It is because they are NOT going to do things the proper way. They will cut corners and finish quickly so they can make a profit. Most homeowners assume when they hire a professional, they will not have to be double checking, making sure they are getting what they are paying for.

It is important to feel comfortable with the company you hired and rest assure you’re being treated professionally. A professional painter will take the time to educate the client and fully address all questions and concerns. They should not make you feel intimidated or embarrassed to answer even the simplest of questions. The unfortunate fact is “cheap” painters usually do “cheap” work and skip on the quality materials. A professional who takes satisfaction in their work will show up early, dress the part and work with pride. Keep all these factors in mind when choosing who you hire and you will get the results you want and paid for!

For more info on Exterior House Painting in Los Angeles contact Matt at Concepts In Color.

Some Cutting Edge Painting Ideas for Your Contemporary House

October 14, 2011

At Concepts In Color we know that one of the simplest and least expensive ways to revamp a room in a new style is through painting. Contemporary decorating is a comfortable approach to a more sterile modern aesthetic. It includes sleek, clean lines and contemporary materials such as wood and metal. Contemporary painting includes sleek and neutral walls with splashes of color.

Painting With Clean Lines

When painting walls for a contemporary room, it is important to have clean and level lines to enhance the sleek appearance of the room.  While some décor styles would encourage visible brush strokes and lines, contemporary design is about removing mess and clutter in favor of clean surfaces.

Contemporary Colors

Use contemporary wall colors such as neutral earth tones or light paint colors when painting your contemporary house. Avoid colors with too much intensity such as bright yellows, purples or greens. Instead, use washed out versions of those colors. This will make the rooms in your house look bigger. Popular contemporary colors are beige, light gray, white or light green. Need help picking a color?

Use Punches of Color

One complaint of contemporary design is that it appears too stark and uninviting for people that prefer a comfortable and warm style. If this is the case for you, think about accent colors on small walls in entryways, backsplashes, staircases and basements. Choose colors that fit with the color scheme in the room. Use very bright colors on very small walls and less bright but still vibrant colors on larger walls. This will keep your room balanced and contemporary.

Paint Boxes of Color

For a more retro and modern approach, paint boxes of color on various walls in your home rather than the whole accent wall. Choose bright but muted colors that mesh well with your home’s color palette. Paint these boxes of color around pieces of wall art to help accent the art, or to frame doorways and windows.

Matt at Concepts In Color can help you with some great ideas, not just with Contemporary Interior House painting, but with your exterior as well. Always feel free to contact Concepts In Color for a free consult about painting your home.

Tips on Painting Colored Borders in a Room

September 23, 2011

Concepts In Color knows that a border will add visual interest to any wall it graces. Whether you choose to break up a large wall with a contrasting band of color or add a patterned border, the choices are plenty. Before you begin, consider the space the border will adorn and look for details like accents and accessories to come up with an ideal color scheme.

Painted Border

To paint a perfect border, use professional painter’s tape for clean lines. Whether you choose to paint one solid band or a collection of thin, pinstriped bands, painted borders add a focal point to tie the room together. The placement of the border depends on your personal taste. Ideas for placement include eye-level, 1/3 of the way up the wall and 2/3 of the way up the wall. The colored border can also act as a chair rail to separate two contrasting paint colors — one above the border and one below.

Stamped Border

For an organically shaped border decide the general area you wish to stamp and stamp the length of the wall in your chosen pattern. Ideas for stamps include large-format rubber stamps, stamps cut from potatoes, sponge stamps and any other stamp you wish to use. Ideas include trucks and cars for a child’s room, peony blooms for a bathroom border, and polka dots or other geometrics to liven up a dull office space. Don’t let the stamped border become overly busy, and use one image to stamp throughout the length of the border.

Stenciled Border

Choose modern or contemporary stencils to create a jaw-dropping stencil in your home. Modern stencils are akin to the patterns available with contemporary wallpaper. Patterns you can expect to find include damask, retro geometrics, Moroccan designs, cottage designs, Swedish and vintage florals and Old World European patterns. The colored border should add to the overall decor and never detract. Choose patterns to complement the existing design of the room. Look for inspiration in your favorite pieces. For instance, extract a pattern or color from a throw rug or colorful pillow.

Tips and Ideas

Buy quality tape and stencils for best results in your border painting. Don’t limit yourself to painting borders according to the materials available for purchase. Rummage through your home for objects like old coffee cans. Use the coffee can to paint a scalloped border around the perimeter of the room. Or, make your own stencils or stamps using vellum, a see-through type of paper. Other ideas include a border of colorful steps, piano keys, book spines and a chalkboard border for leaving notes in the kitchen or foyer.

For more information on interior and exterior house painting visit Concepts In Color.

The Online Checklist for Finding a Good Painting Contractor

September 14, 2011

Q: Who is going to paint my house?
A: The following checklist will help you sort through the process of finding a painting contractor that is right for you.

Start simple. Ask around.

If you see a house that’s been freshly painted, it’s a good opportunity to find out who did the painting. Sometimes you shall see a sign in the front yard advertising for the painting contractor. This is an indication that the customer is very happy and is willing to allow advertising in the front yard.

Successful word-of-mouth advertising doesn’t happen unless a painting contractor has satisfied customers. You can learn a lot about a painter from past clients.

Ask for references.

This step is slightly different from asking around. Now you’re speaking with a specific contractor. You want a list of references. If a painting contractor cannot give you references, it’s a good reason to check that contractor off your list. Ask for a minimum of at least three references, and follow through with contacting each person the contractor claims to have worked with.

Ask the right house painting questions.

How long ago did you hire the painter? A reference for a recent paint job isn’t as valuable as a reference for a paint job that was completed a few years ago. A customer is more likely to give you valuable information if the job has stood the test of time, and the customer is still happy.

Did the contractor do quality work? It’s important to understand what quality work looks like. Even if your friend is happy with the results, you might want to take a look at the finished paint job. Check out areas such as windows, doors and trim. Careful work in these areas is a positive indication of a good painting contractor.

Was the painter polite and pleasant to work with? This is more important than it might seem on the surface. It’s important to find a contractor you communicate well with and feel comfortable around. A courteous demeanor is a hallmark of professionalism and will save you unnecessary stress. Also, a painter who is enthusiastic about his job is more likely to do a good job than one who is burned out and just in it for the paycheck.

Did the work start (and finish) in a timely fashion? Good contractors let their customers know their planned schedule in advance. And professionals do their best to stick to it. Look for a painting contractor who arrived at a reasonable time every morning. Just remember that exterior paint jobs can be affected by the weather, so watch for customers who hold a bad rainstorm or unseasonably cold temperatures against the contractor!

Was a warranty included? A contractor that stands behind his/her work is a sign of a professional. Remember a warranty only has value if it is in writing and extends for a reasonable period. If the painting contractor only guarantees work for one year, it could be a sign that some aspect of the painting work could be low-quality.

Finding a Painting Contractor Just Got Easier – Get Free Price Quotes

Get more Info: Matt Kimble at www.ConceptsInColor Exterior Painting in West Los Angeles

Thanks: House Painting Info, Webtime Graphics and Consumer Reports.

What Are The Best Contemporary Interior Paint Colors?

September 1, 2011

Toss out the old paint chips, and mix up some contemporary color for your walls.

At Concepts In Color we know that designers and homeowners with a sense of style are experimenting with new shades of some old favorite paint colors with striking results. White walls are disappearing under coats of inky charcoal. Theatrical shades of rich purple, like aubergine and currant, are covering up the linen and pale blue. A green like antique glazed pottery is gleaming off entire walls. The paint in contemporary interiors is a carefully considered element of the artistry of the design.

Purples
Purple, the color of royalty, is asserting itself in contemporary décor in far more powerful hues than lilac and lavender. Real deep purple, with strong tones of red or blue or even black, is a choice for high-style reception areas like foyers and social spaces like studies, libraries and media rooms.

As reported in “Veranda” magazine, internationally renowned designer Nina Campbell mixed a black-currant lacquer for the library walls of her Chelsea flat in London. The vibrant berry tone is offset by white trim and ceiling and polished hardwood floors. A strong purple is a fabulous backdrop for art, dramatic in a dining room and fair warning in an entryway that the home you are about to enter is anything but boring and predictable. (What color is right for you? Ask Matt Kimble at Concepts in Color: Interior Painting in Los Angeles and surrounding areas.)

Grays
Slate, pewter, charcoal—gray is a new neutral and showing up everywhere from the pool house to the bedroom. A softer medium gray is rich when painted on walls in faux suede. But the sophisticate is a darker shade of gray, sometimes tempered with brown, sometimes verging on black. Dark taupe or charcoal is dramatic in a dining room or living room and is often bordered with white trim to accommodate contemporary furnishings. The darker grays are cozy in a den with a fireplace and crisp and neat in a kitchen with stainless steel appliances. (Ask Matt at Concepts In Color, Interior Painting in Los Angeles , for more great ideas.) Grays look terrific with wood floors, ceramic tile and terracotta floors, slate floors and hand-loomed Persian or geometric modern carpets. The darker end of the spectrum tends to feel claustrophobic when used with a lot of traditional furniture, heavy drapes and patterns. But it is stunning in a high-ceiling salon with elaborate period furnishings like Louis XV chairs and tall windows that let in plenty of light.

Greens
With Contemporary Interior Painting in Los Angeles, Celadon and sage are greens that invite more color. The shades hold the watery mystique of Venice and the appeal of the Arts & Crafts style. Naturally, they look gorgeous with Italian gilt furniture and Arts & Crafts pieces. But celadon also calls up Chinese court artistry and blends well with Asian styles. And sage is right at home with everything Western as well as earth-toned natural materials and country décor. Green is versatile enough to use as a glass tile backsplash in a kitchen, a penny tile bathroom floor, the wall color for the public rooms in the house—the living room, dining room, or den–the dusty blackboard paint wall in a children’s room, the single color wall in an otherwise all-white master bedroom. Celadon and sage green are calming paint colors but by no means unremarkable ones.

Read more: Concepts In Color
Contact Matt at Concepts In Color for help with Interior Painting in Los Angeles 

Quality Painting For Your Residential and Commercial Properties
West Los Angeles | Beverly Hills | Brentwood | Pacific Palisades | Santa Monica | Bel Air | Hollywood and more.

Special thanks; Benna Crawford Journalist and New York-based freelance writer since 1997.

Contemporary Architectural Exterior Painting in Los Angeles, CA

August 23, 2011

At Concepts In Color we know that contemporary architectural exterior painting colors are not just for modern houses. Architects and designers develop contemporary color schemes for different architectures, whether the homes are original or are built today in that style. The smooth lines of contemporary houses call for a restrained color scheme while the decorative details of Victorian houses lend themselves to contrasting colors.

Considerations

Start your exterior painting color scheme by considering the architectural style of your house. Contemporary color schemes extend the traditional colors of that period with modern hues and often add a punch of a modern color for contrast. Your exterior color selections should blend with the other houses in your neighborhood yet show your personality. Use dark colors to highlight architectural details and light colors to hide flaws. Warm colors, such as yellow and red, advance towards the viewer, while cool colors tend to recede. Every color comes in shades that have underlying warm, neutral or cool tones, so you’re not limited to just one color family.

Contemporary Homes

The eclectic designs of contemporary homes often have clean lines and minimal ornamentation. Natural paint colors, such as shades of white and cream, gray and brown highlight the shape of the home. For a monochromatic look, use a light squirrel gray for the siding or stucco, an off-white for the door surround and pure white for the window trim. Mix neutrals such as ashwood, a light gray and mid-toned bison brown, and add a punch of color with a licorice red door. For ultimate contrast, use black and white, but choose a cool, blue-toned, shade of white. Check out Concepts In Color for ideas about painting Contemporary Homes.

Victorian Homes

Contemporary colors for Victorian houses reflect the original dark jewel colors of the period but with a modern twist. Choose rich but muted colors, such as a mid-blue-gray and a red mahogany with white trim for a strong contrast. Lighter, but still muted, colors offer a more gentle contrast. Try pink-beige with a warm-toned white and soft blue-gray. To highlight the modern twist, paint the exterior in a soft white with lilac tones and a pale pink-lilac. Add strong color with mid-range purple trim. Check out Concepts In Color for information about painting your home.

Bungalows and Ranch Homes

These architectural styles appeared around the 1950s and are still built today. Coordinate your exterior colors to the brickwork, often in shades of red, yellow or gray. A color palette of soft ivory and pale gray-taupe matches gray stone and complements a door of soft brown-red. Choose a monochromatic palette of a yellow-toned white, a warm taupe and a pale raffia color for sophistication. Highlight the size of your bungalow by using two different shades of white for the walls, and highlight the trim with a rich blue or brown.

Contact Matt at Concepts In Color for Ideas about painting your home.

Awesome Beach House Paint Colors

August 11, 2011

At Concepts In Color we know there are lots of paint options to consider when you’re painting the interior and exterior of a beach house. Whether you opt for traditional beach house colors or a more contemporary theme, the end result can be just as effective.

Nautical Colors

Create a jaunty, traditional nautical look inside your beach house by using blue and white paint. Painting the walls with pure white paint and highlight the woodwork and skirting boards in a royal marine shade of blue.

Multicolored Pastels

Choose paint in a range of pastel colors and adorn the interior and exterior walls of your beach house with an array of pastel shades. In beach homes that have wood paneling, this works particularly well, as you can paint each panel a different color. Alternatively, use one pastel color per wall or per room. (Complement the look with matching flooring, fabrics and furniture.)

Bold and Bright

Use bold and bright colors, such as red, yellow, orange, green or cerise to create a stunning effect in your beach house. Pick a couple of favorite colors, or use a rainbow palette. Be creative and experiment with colors you may normally shy away from, as a beach house can be the ideal place to use bright colors. Paint the exterior of the beach house in colorful shades too, plus the front door, to create a cheery and welcoming look.

(Matt at Concepts In Color can talk to you about even more great ideas for your beach house)

Natural Beach

Bring the colors of the beach into your home, through the use of warm sandy shades. Choose one sandy color for the walls and a darker shade to add definition to the woodwork and skirting boards. (Email Matt for more ideas along this theme) Teamed with natural wood flooring and textured wall tiles, these colors will create the ambiance of the beach within the comfort of your own four walls.

Contemporary Colors

Experiment with using contemporary paint colors, by choosing a palette of shiny metallic silver, matte silver and gray paints. Use matte silver or gray paint on the walls, adding accents with the shiny metallic silver. These colors will help create lots of light in your beach home and work very well alongside black or silver furniture and kitchen appliances.

Contact Matt Kimble at Concepts In Color for a free consult and more great ideas!

Exterior Paint Ideas for Contemporary Houses

August 3, 2011

The crisp lines and modern features of contemporary homes often set them apart from more classic residences. While painters can select nearly any colors they want to cover their abodes, some hue selections are more appropriate for these modern structures. When preparing to give your mod home a fresh coat of paint, talk to an expert about some of the options more appropriate for contemporary homes.

Earthy Hues

Many modern homes are designed with the Earth in mind. If your home features an assortment of eco-friendly additions, keep this eco-conciousnes in mind when selecting your exterior paint hues. Choose colors that are as earthy as the eco-friendly features your home contains. For example, paint the majority of the exterior a mossy green, using earthy browns as accents to tie this masterpiece together and show your affinity for all things green.

Two-Tone Painting

Highlight the contemporary features of your home by following a two-tone painting plan. Select two tones that contrast significantly, like white and black, and feature them both on your home for an attention-getting option. For example, paint the majority of your home white and the modern trims in black, making them stand out from the rest of the home and, in doing so, accentuating their individuality.

Metallic Grays

Many modern home designs feature metallic trims in place of the standard wooden ones. If your deck is crafted of metal and your trims are metal beams, accentuate these features by selecting grays to paint the rest of your exterior. Choose a dominate gray a few hues off of the metal accents on the exterior of your home to create the desired contrast and make the metallic trim on your home truly stand out.

Color Pops

Contemporary decorators are often not shy about using color, and the exterior of your home should be no exception. While you likely don’t want to cover your entire home in apple red, featuring this bold-as-can-be hue somewhere on your exterior can set your home apart. For example, painting your front door and garage door with this color, using a color that contrasts well, such as steely gray, on the rest of the home. This choice is particularly appropriate if there is something special about these items you choose to paint so boldly, such as a vivid wood design on your front door.

For more information about Exterior Paint Ideas for Contemporary Houses, Contact Matt Kimble at Concepts In Color

How to Choose a Color Scheme for Your Kitchen

July 22, 2011

Kitchen by Concepts In Color

Choosing a color scheme for your kitchen can be a time consuming and thoughtful experience. With hundreds of hues to choose from, picking the right color scheme can mean the difference between a dream kitchen and a mistake. However, taking into consideration your personal preferences, your kitchen’s lighting and room size will help make this decision more manageable.

This is your kitchen – one place that you will use everyday. If you enjoy blue, for example, use that as a color off of which you want to build. Don’t be afraid to use bright colors as well. Kitchens are typically thought of as happy places, so if bright colors make you happy, find a way to incorporate them, either through accessories or focal point colors.

Look at your surroundings. How big is the kitchen? How much natural or artificial light does your kitchen have? What are the kitchen’s dimensions? Choosing dark colors for a small kitchen, for example, can make the kitchen appear even smaller. According to Sherwin-Williams, if you have a big room and want it to feel more intimate, colors such as red, gold and brown are better to use. If you do not have much light in the kitchen, lighter color schemes may make it feel brighter.

Get to know the color wheel and which colors are complementary. Painting the walls in a kitchen is just one component of a color scheme. You will have to choose colors schemes for the cabinets, appliances, countertops, backsplash and hardware, for example. These are important desicians. Matt Kimble at Concepts In Color can sit down with you and help you get started in the right direction.

Wood
Take into account wood. If you already have dark stained cabinets, for example, that you wish to keep as part of the color scheme in the kitchen, consider lighter colors on the countertops and walls to contrast those dark cabinets.

Style
Consider what your style is. Are you more country or contemporary? Country kitchens use splashes of bright colors, such as red. Think bowls of red fruit — a color that you can then incorporate into the rest of the decor in the kitchen through accessories. Contemporary kitchens, on the other hand, may use more earth tones or neutral colors.

Look at what’s in style. Just like clothing, home decor styles change all the time. If you plan to sell your house in the near future, you may want to consider color schemes that are currently in style that will appeal to a wide array of potential buyers. This goes for hardware and appliances as well.

Flow
Look at your other rooms. If you have an open flow into the kitchen from the living room, you may want to consider a color scheme that complements the color schemes in your other rooms. You do not have to pick the exact same color scheme, but instead can pick a color that is in the same family or a complementing color. This unifies the entire space.

Bring Out Your Best
Look at your best features. Do you have a picturesque window in the kitchen or beautiful cabinetry? If you have a focal point in the kitchen, choose a color scheme that accentuates that piece. Examples of potential items to feature include crown molding, fireplaces, a focal wall and windows. To accentuate one of these, use contrasting paints or try different finishes of paint that make these items stand out. For example, if you have a beautiful backsplash that is bright, choose a more muted neutral color on the wall that makes the backsplash stand out that much more.

Watch your room at various times of the day. When the sun is at its highest, the color of your room may look different at night under artificial light. To ensure you like the color scheme you pick for your kitchen at all times of the day, tape a few paint samples (or paint sample spots on the walls) and watch how they vary throughout the day in different lights. Talk to Matt at Concepts In Color and find the easiest way to bring out the best features of your kitchen.

More About Color: www.conceptsincolor.com