Confused is an understatement. Did you know there are so many shades of white? White is not just plain old simple white these days. There is white with a hint of black, blue, yellow, pink, warm whites, icy whites. I know, crazy!! I wanted to paint our new house a simple white, but the number of options was completely overwhelming. I’ll share below my process on how to choose the right white to paint your home.
The house is nearly 10 years old, it just made sense to freshen it up with some paint as there were many marks and holes in the wall that needed repairing along with every room having a different colour in each, green, red, pink, blue, the loungroom had a dark brown wall and the upstairs hallway had some maroon coloured feature walls. I wanted our new house to be a really fresh with a crisp white pallette so I could use my accessories and artwork to add in pops of colour.
I read a post by the Stylist Splash where she painted her home white, then the afternoon sun went down and her white looked like a pale blue. This truly frightened me. I invested in getting a local painter to paint the whole house, I wanted to make sure I was happy with white.
We were able to get access to the new house prior to settlement (thanks to having a wonderful agent) and I got a few painters in to give me quotes. I didn’t receive a quote from painter #1, painter #2 was really lovely and knew what he was talking about and because painter #1 didn’t give us a quote I got a 3rd quote, let’s just say painter #3 must not have wanted the job, his quote was over double painter #2. So painter #2 it was!
It was recommended to me by various people to use Antique White USA and one of the painters also suggested Lexicon 1/2 (means half the strength of the lexicon original colour).
I painted Lexicon 1/2 and Antique White USA onto some white cardboard. I was looking at them for days against the carpet sample in our old home and really loved the freshness of Lexicon half (left) and found the Antique white USA (right) was very warm with yellow tones, which I really didn’t want. Our old house was Magnolia, which was a very creamy yellow colour. I took the cardboard to our new house, it looked completely different there. I could see the black (grey tinge) in Lexicon half and didn’t like it at all, then the Antique white USA didn’t look too bad up against the kitchen tiles, like the yellow tones had disappeared, perhaps it was the way the sun was facing? I don’t think painting on cardboard was my answer.
I came home and did a bit more research, a friend suggested Antique White USA 1/2 strength and I stalked a few interior designers/stylist on instagram asking them what shade of white they used. Many used Natural White or Whisper White. So I went to the paint shop and got more samples and this great little sample pot roller kit from Bunnings.
You pour the paint into the plastic packaging. I went with Dulux paint, you can see their range of whites here, they have 144 different white & neutral tones.
The day the house settled I was in there with my samples, as the painter needed to purchase the paint the next day. I started painting colours directly onto the wall. I painted (from top to bottom), whisper white, antique white USA 1/2, Lexicon 1/4 and Whitsunday Island. The original colour of the house was a darkish beige, I was also hoping the undertone of this wouldn’t throw out the white on top so I did several coats to make sure.
I painted walls in various areas of the house, in the kitchen next to the white tiles, in a bright area of the lounge room, in a dark room, and then upstairs in a well light room. I stayed at the house all day to watch the paint colours… how silly does that sound, like I have time to watch paint dry LOL. But I wanted to make certain I was choosing the right white!
Once dry I labelled each of the painted areas with masking tape so I can remember the colour name. I felt whisper white had green tones in the afternoon, antique white USA 1/2 had pink tones all day and whitsunday island felt like a stoney white.
I ended up choosing Lexicon 1/4 strength and very happy with how bright white and fresh it is. Doesn’t the white make such a difference from the before photo at the top of the post!
Have I chosen the right white?
I’m happy with it, and have no regrets.
Have you painted your home white? Which white did you choose?