New Life For Leftover Paint Chips

paint-chip.jpgWe have all had that indecisive moment at the home improvement store. Standing there, staring at the wall of paint samples for what seems like hours, every color starts to blend into the next in the same way that too many perfume samples start to smell alike. There is so much pressure, you might have to live with this color for the next 10 years, or more! There is only one way to handle this – pick up a handful of samples to take with you to stare at in the comfort of your own home. Once you have selected the perfect color, what happens to that leftover stack of color? It’s time to craft! (Please note: I said leftover – I am not endorsing stealing stacks of chips for crafting purposes!)

When I discovered Lisa Solomon on The Beholder, I fell in love. I would have never guessed that embroidering a simple paint chip could look so sophisticated. Her series of paint chip art plays with the fantastic descriptive names given to paint colors such as this one, Sparrow.

Another fantastic use for your reject color ideas is this colorful and functional card holder craft from Design Verb. There are incredibly detailed instructions and step-by-step photos on his blog.

My last recycled paint sample idea comes to us from Lollipoop Designs. She uses a paint sample cards as covers for her notebooks. What a great way to sandwich stacks of scrap paper! Be sure to check out Lollipoop Designs library card notebooks too!

Some other great uses for left over paint chip samples:

I’m sure you have many more ideas, please feel free to share them in a comment!

[Images courtesy of Lisa Solomon, Design Verb, and Lollipoop Designs]

Written by Juliet Ames

Juliet Ames breaks plates for a living. A metals and craft major at Towson University, Ames went on to work for the Howard County Arts Council organizing gallery exhibits. Meanwhile, she kept up her own craftwork. The plate-breaking started with a mosaic mailbox. “There were leftover pieces, so I soldered them and wrapped them around my neck and got a lot of compliments,” says Ames, 28, who just had her first child, a boy.


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  1. I am obsessed with colorful things. Whenever I see these paint chip samples I want to take them home and….do what with them?? Great ideas! And I promise not to take too many. And ooh I looove all the fanciful names for the colors – moonspinner, caramel ice, chickadee…
    * happy sigh *

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