Our 32 Favorite Paint Colors This Year

Alternate punny post title: Gimme Some Moore. Yes, that was a Busta Rhymes reference. Dude, that song was my junior year jam. And speaking of jams, our new nail gun is our latest. John’s totally ready to get his crown molding install on this weekend, assuming he can wrestle it out of my hands. Just gotta let these guys acclimate a little bit longer…

So while the crown molding gets to know our house a little better (and I dreamily gaze at it while whispering sweet nothings) we’re excited to share our 2013 Benjamin Moore paint picks! We’re a little tardy for the party with this – and a big thanks to everyone who has been asking about it! – but we just didn’t want to pull them out of a hat. So we took our sweet time finding the colors we wanted to marry. All 32 of them. It’s going to be the wedding of the century, guys.

We thought it would be fun to toss out some more specific ideas for using a few of our picks right in this post, so here’s one now:

And here’s another one (you’ll find four more peppered throughout the post).

Some of the colors in the collection are tried and true tones that we’ve already used, some are colors that we’ve eyed forever, and some are colors that we used for our book (so we’ve seen those in action as well). You can check out all of our colors here (if you told us five years ago that we’d end up on the Benjamin Moore website, we’d have laughed at you for five minutes, gained our composure, and laughed at you for five more). And you can pop over to view our collection whenever you’d like by following this little sidebar button of ours…

We’ve been using Benjamin Moore colors for around half a decade, and we’ve been buying their actual paint since 2011 (we first tried it out on our office built-ins), so when they invited us to curate a collection of our favorite colors last year, it was pretty much a dream of ours. And jumping back in to choose 32 new colors for 2013 was just as much fun. This partnership is just like any other side gig that helps pay the bills – like writing a magazine column or our book – except we get to play with paint chips for this one, so… yeah buddy.

Our process was pretty simple. If by simple you mean splaying out 561 paint swatches (you think I’m kidding) in order to choose our favorite 32 colors. It was beautiful chaos, I tell ya. And I loved every undertone-investigating minute of it.

The goal is simple too. We just hope anyone out there who’s overwhelmed by a giant wall full of swatches will find comfort in a smaller collection of favorites to peruse and potentially use in their home. And we hope that some of the suggestions spattered throughout this post get your motors running. You know, in that exciting I-want-to-paint-something-right-this-second way. Or in that I-want-to-paint-something-but-first-I-need-a-marshmallow way. Either one.

And since we’re on the subject of color, have you guys used any paint colors that you’ve loved lately? Do you keep a little folder of your favorite swatches? Or a pinterest board full of ’em? How do you keep track of them all?

When we were choosing this collection we discovered that cutting out swatches individually and laying them all out on a neutral background (dark charcoal colored Karl, haha!) was a great way to see how they all worked together. And it helped us “balance” things by being sure we had enough dark choices, bold ones, neutrals, and soft and serene colors that weren’t too bright or too neutral. In short: if you have a few spare weekends and a neutral colored sofa, I highly recommend playing around with paint swatches instead of watching TV. Seriously, it’s right up there with a marathon of The Walking Dead (albeit a lot less bloody).

Psst- We picked a winner for this week’s giveaway, so you can find out if it’s you right here.


  1. says

    This is awesome! Looking forward to browsing your whole collection. Can you believe they don’t give out swatches in Spain?!?! You have to buy a paint deck or choose the color at the store (definitely not ideal).!

  2. says

    This makes me want to repaint everything in our house… Love the geranium frames. Maybe in your new hallway with the board and batten?
    Also, my nailgun and I are still going stong on the honeymoon phase, 4 years later :)

  3. says

    Ooh! Wow, whittling down 561 paint swatches to these only 32! There’s nothing that intimidates me more than picking paint. After a while, all the colors just start to look the same… Thanks for the pretty paint options!

    • says

      Unless you’re a color pro like John and Sherry, picking paint colors can be intimidating. It helps to narrow down your paint choices to a select few before you find yourself facing a wall of swatches. I would like to hear their thoughts on how to avoid this ‘paint paralysis’ that haunts most of us.

  4. Lindsay says

    So can we expect to see Pinch of Spice on your walls in the near future since you’re toying with the idea of potentially repainting?!?

  5. says

    What a fun gig! I can just imagine spreading them all out on the floor and picking the ones you love! Fun!

    I’m loving the Moroccan Spice! It would look awesome in my dream kitchen: all white with pops of a tomato-y, spicy red and Jadeite green (since I collect Jadeite)!

    • says

      We actually used that for an entire wall of our playroom back for the book (and then painted it back so no one saw it before the book came out). It’s a gorgeous color!


  6. says

    A while back you suggested Benjamin Moore paint colors to me. I went into the city a few weekends ago to pick out a Benjamin Color. I just wish that Benjamin Moore was sold in the big box stores like Lowes. :) Such a distance to drive for such a wide selection of pretty colors! … maybe since you work so closely with them you can drop them a hint for me. ;)

    • Aimee says

      Benjamin Moore is sold at our local OSH store, it’s not super big box, but it still has all the regular hardware things so you don’t have to go to HD or Lowes to get the rest of the stuff for your project. Although I do think it’s just a CA chain. Unhelpful comment of the day…

    • Linda says

      In my area, certain Ace Hardware stores carry Benjamin Moore – including the Aura line. The Ace guys are very knowledgeable, but the folks at my local BM store just rock with advice and how-to tips. Got me through my master bath wallpaper removal and paint job.

  7. says

    We used Behr colors on our walls (just posted a room reveal today!) and many of our color choices were inspired by you guys. I used light gray as our backdrop/neutral and some people thought I was crazy to use a “cool color.” But ya know what… now they’re changing their tune!

  8. Emily F. says

    Love these! Especially that Calypso Blue…I see a test pot of that in my future. It’d be great to paint some frames for an accent color in our living room.

    Thinking about your bedroom color made me go with a darker gray in our new master bedroom. It’s Pavestone by SW, a darkish gray with brown undertones, and I lurve it. So comfy and cozy feeling!

  9. Ashley says

    I spy with my little eye…a new teal cart in the dining room! I’m loving your new collection of paint colors. They have me itching to paint something!

  10. Kristen says

    After two houses replacing all the quarter round…our nail gun sleeps in his own bed and is served wine and cheese every evening…

    Our nursery is actually painted something very close to pinch of spice (little more purple maybe?), with black and white, and bright yellow accents. Love it.

  11. says

    We’ll be painting our dining room next weekend – a nice light gray on three walls, one chalkboard wall and an accent color in the entry and on a bump out (emerald? mulberry? peacock? jury’s out on the accent color!). Huh…now it sounds a bit crazy! I think it will come together well, though!