White and Off-White have been the top color trend for several years. White walls give you the opportunity to showcase art and decor that may not necessarily match the same color scheme. By having white or off-white walls, you allow yourself to have uninhibited freedom with your design.
Image via Justine Hand
1. How to Choose the Right White
- Before painting a room white, identify its orientation to the sun.
- Use a clear white paint (neither too warm nor too cool) in rooms that face away from the noonday sun.
- If you have a north-facing room in an area like New England (with snowy winters), clear white will feel too chilly; try a warmer off-white instead.
- South-facing rooms (in the Northern Hemisphere; north-facing in the Southern Hemisphere) receive the most intense sun during the day; use a cool white with gray undertones to reduce glare.
Image via LJL Design, LLC
2. How to Choose the Right Trim Color
- Take a cue from the color palette in the room: If the walls are a cool color (green, blue, gray, purple), choose a cool white trim; if the walls are a warm hue (red, pink, brown, orange, yellow), choose a warm white trim.
- For cool white trim, try Site White SW7070 from Sherwin-Williams, Full Moon 780E-2from Behr, Mineral Ash 7006-19 from Valspar or Horizon from Benjamin Moore.
- For warm white trim, try Creamy SW7012 from Sherwin-Williams, Popped Corn W-B-200 from Behr, Snow Cap 7003-8 from Valspar or Acadia White OC-38 from Benjamin Moore
Image via Sean Litchfield Photography
3. How to Use White in the Bedroom
- Exposed wood framing (as seen here) looks rustic and charming when painted fresh white.
- Shiny metallic and reflective surfaces add glamour; just keep in mind that a little goes a long way.
- Layer in light grays for a cooler palette or off-white for a warmer feel.
Image via House of Beatniks
4. Using an All White Palette with Accents
- Add a textural pillow or two to a bed made with simple white linens for a luxurious look.
- White bedding makes other neutrals look richer; it’s a good choice in a bedroom with beige, cream, brown or gray walls and details.
- If you love changing the look of your bedroom frequently, white bedding is easy to update with colorful throws and pillows.
Image via WM F. Holland Architecture
5. How to Use White in the Kitchen
- Wood adds warmth, charm and character to a white kitchen: hardwood floors, a rustic farm table or wooden stools look especially welcome against a backdrop of white.
- Because white reflects more light than other colors, quality is important when choosing your materials — consider beautiful white marble, glossy subway tiles or perfectly simple Shaker cabinets.
- The expanding quality of white makes it a good choice for compact kitchens.
Image via Lucy Crockett Design
6. How to Use White in the Bathroom
- Use white in the bathroom as a foil for really interesting and beautiful fixtures, such as a gorgeous claw-foot tub or unique sink.
- A white scheme, when paired with good lighting, can make even the darkest windowless interior bathroom feel light and bright.
- Pair white with warm, rich wood for an organic modern look. Even small details (like a wooden bath mat and sink-side accessories) can add interest to an all-white bath.
Image via Amber Interiors
6. How to Use White in an Open Floor Plan
- Update your white space whenever you like simply by swapping out colorful accessories.
- Enhance a summer mood with beach-inspired textures like seagrass, sisal, linen and cotton voile.
- In the winter, bring in cozy textures like faux fur and wool, and add some candlelight.
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