Asked on May 03, 2015

Matching a painted wall

Cornelia Schott
by Cornelia Schott

We are looking to match paint on our walls in the entryway. The previous owners did not leave the paint behind. We can take a quarter size sample from the wall using a razor blade and leaving a mark. Has anyone matched an existing paint without scratching up walls?

q matching a painted wall, home improvement, paint colors, painting
  7 answers
  • Swan Road Designs Swan Road Designs on May 03, 2015
    Is there a switch plate or outlet cover that may have been painted? If so, use that as your guide. Then, in the future, do what I do. After a room has been painted, I paint the wrong side of a switch plate and/or outlet cover with the paint and note, in Sharpie, the date and color name/number of the paint. No matter what, you or the future owner will have the information.

  • Cheryl Brouwers Cheryl Brouwers on May 03, 2015
    There is something that Sherwin-Williams has on their site that you can use to match paints: it's called 'chip it'. You take a picture of something and run it through their program and it tells you what paint color it is. It's easy to do.

  • Lucy Nunn Lucy Nunn on May 05, 2015
    I was told at Sherwin Williams that there's really no such thing as a perfect match. But, if you get a very close color, and can paint a whole section at a time it will not be noticeable. Light hits all the walls differently anyway.

  • 861650 861650 on May 05, 2015
    Lucy Nunn is so right! And your idea about using a razor. I am in the same situation and have been thinking the same thing for months. Decided to do it. Repairing a small dent is easy. Buy a small tub of spackling compound and a putty knife.Follow directions. After drying, sand surface till smooth. You can always go to and find a video on how to repair walls. You can find a video on just about anything and everything on this site. Am not good at sanding by hand--it just never comes out quite right. Use a sanding block and 220 grit sand paper for a smooth finish. Years ago I bought a tiny sander from Black and Decker. Is shaped like an iron and I used it for crafts and small DIY projects. This tiny little sander is one of the BEST tool I have ever purchased.

  • Mcgypsy9 Mcgypsy9 on May 05, 2015
    Karen...your little iron shaped sander is called a Mouse Sander. I couldn't live without mine!!! OH and Cheryl Brouwers...Chip It is only for Sherwin-Williams Paints. Cornelia, in order to get the exact color you will have to have a pretty good sized piece of it (like 2"x 2" in order to take it to lowes or home depot or they can't duplicate it. I would just go with a completely different color. Get as close as you can to the existing color in your rooms and since it's only your entry way that needs painting, no one will notice if you do all of the entry but trust me they will notice if you try to patch it. Been there, done that : )

  • Marion Nesbitt Marion Nesbitt on May 09, 2015
    Have not had good results from trying to match so don't even go that route anymore. Figure I have to buy the paint anyway so just go darker or lighter or change the colour completely.

  • KatAych KatAych on Feb 09, 2016
    If you're worried about a photo not reflecting the "exact" color you need, I would suggest hitting your local paint store and stocking up on some paint chips! Take them home and compare them to what you already have. See if you can find an exact match that way.