The running trend of monochromatic, all-white interiors can be a hit or a miss. There’s no grey area (pardon the pun). When a white room is not executed correctly, it can fall flat. But it has the potential to be multi-dimensional, luxurious and warm. Here are some key ways to tailor your space when decorating and working all in white.
When creating a white room, start with a clean slate. Remove everything and identify the focal points in the space. These will become a focus for your furniture arrangements and accessories, drawing the eye and creating interest.
Before we get any deeper into the wonderful world of white interiors, let’s get something straight: there is more than one white. (Technically, true white isn’t a colour, but that’s besides the point.) In fact, white comes in thousands of shades, tints and tones; a veritable rainbow of… white and off-white.
Choose your white. Yes, there is such a thing as the “right white,” from a pool of choices ranging from barely blues to whites with hints of grey, pink, green, purple or yellow. Don’t panic, you don’t have to choose just one. Layering a few different whites is recommended, adding some much-needed depth and warmth to a monochromatic space.
To ensure your whites are complementary, stay within the same “colour temperature.” That refers to the colour spectrum, with warm colours leaning toward the yellow side, and cool ones to blueish side. Combining warm and cool whites creates competition between colours, and the inevitable clash.
In the absence of colour, my next tip would be to incorporate texture. Look for variety in your building/finishing materials: rough, smooth, glossy, organic, the options are truly endless. You can also incorporate visual variety into your pillows, throws and upholstery, rugs, window coverings and even wallcoverings. Pattern is what you might call a “visual texture.” Subtle pattern can help break up the monotony of an all-white room, without compromising the all-white aesthetic.
TIP: Worried about stains showing on white furniture? Gone are the days of un-washable whites or the dreaded plastic sofa cover, in an effort to keep those whites bright. Consider the use of the piece of furniture within the context of the room. If it’s a high-traffic area, a spot where people may be eating and drinking, or if you have pets, consider faux leather, microsuede or denim, which are all easy to wipe clean in the event of a spill. If you’re set on fabric upholstery, consider getting removable slipcovers that can be washed and replaced, when the time comes.
Now, remember those focal points? Contrary to all monochromatic instincts, here’s where you’ll want to add a pop of colour. Believe it or not, you can use colour very sparingly without breaking the monochromatic code, in order to help highlight or create a focal point in the room. This could be an architectural feature, a window with a few, a piece of furniture or a vibrant piece of artwork – which I believe can be a fabulous attention-grabber in a room that may not have an obvious focal point.
As a designer, I love working with white probably as much as my client’s love living in white. This trend remains one of the most-requested looks in the modern home, bringing a wonderful freshness with a simple yet impactful palette of one. Contrary to popular belief, white can be warm, exciting and engaging. There are definitely some tricks to making this monochrome aesthetic work, but when it’s done well, your space will feel bigger, brighter and elevated.
Some of my fav cabinetry whites are; Chantilly lace BM, Cloud cover BM, Snow bound SW, Toque white SW For walls; Incredible white SW, Eider white SW, Alabaster SW, classic grey BM, calm BM, intense white BM
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