If you’re like me, you like white because it’s refreshing, pure and clean. When I think of white, I think of clean sails in the middle of the ocean, fluffy clouds amidst a blue sky and white sheets air drying on a line in a grassy field. It’s pretty amazing how a lack of all colors can make you appreciate the surrounding colors.
Why is it, then, that when you paint your walls white it looks so “builder grade” in your home? Adding a designer’s touch to a “white space” is all about the layering effect. If you truly want to make a statement with white, you’ll need to think about more than just your wall color.
PPG Porter Paints gives excellent steps to create a white space in 4 different ways: refined white, creamy white, tinted white or pure white.
Refined whites consist of whites with very subtle shades of complementing colors in the undertones. Think of a pure white combined with a pale bone color.
Creamy Whites often have a yellow base to them which make for a very warm space. They will complement skin tones much more than their opposing cold white counterparts. This will fit well into an antique scheme. Imagine a Louis XVI white damask upholstered love seat combined with a white washed and distressed table. These whites will appear to be lit with candlelight as opposed to a stark white light.
Tinted whites begin to play more with color. These colors appear white until they are placed next to a stark white. At that point, you may begin to make comparisons and see undertones of pink, blue or yellow.
Pure white is ideal in a space with lots of natural light. Sunlight reflects on objects to create color. If the sun is reflecting off a space full of white, you’ll see light in a very pure state. In order to avoid the antique look in a pure white space, stay true to whites which have cool undertones. Think of a high end Miami condo: a window wall, white leather, glass tables and white hydrangeas.
Next time you design a white space, choose a white theme and begin to layer. Consider an off white wall with a soft white sofa, natural beach wood accents and a white washed trunk as a coffee table. As you layer these variations of white within a space, you’ll begin to see how they can make as much of an impact as a bold fuchsia wall.