A Whiter Shade of Pale
Nature’s colors are always perfect. Seashells are a prime example of how wide ranging shades of white can be. In just a handful of shells, you can pick out the whitest whites, creamy yellow whites, whites with the palest tints of rose, and whites tinged with the faintest suggestion of blue-violet.
Donald Kaufman is considered the premier interior design colorist in the country. He says,
“Choose a white with a yellow cast for the walls, a slight pink cast for the ceiling and the barest tinge of blue for the trim. Visually you’ll have a sense of completeness because the main colors of the spectrum are present.”
In other words, if you’re worried that your room will look like your refrigerator, take his advice about mixing shades of white. You can tie these shades together using the same white for trims, but vary the textures: matte, eggshell, semi-gloss and/or high-gloss.
The following recommendation list in an old magazine from Neil Janovic, VP of New York’s Janovic paint stores:
- If you want a snowy, bright white, neither warm nor cool use Janovic Plaza’s own Photographer’s White.
- For creamy whites, try Janovic’s Peaceful White, and Benjamin Moore”s Antique White.
- For White that gets wet, use mildew-resistant Kitchen & Bath White by Pittsburgh paint and by Janovic.
- For Off-whites that never look dirty take a look at Benjamin Moore’s Atrium White, Navajo White, or Janovic Gallery White.
Every designer has an opinion: from Alexa Hampton, president and featured designer at Mark Hampton, LLC:
“Benjamin Moore’s #925 is the creamiest off-white for
moldings doors and baseboards.”
If you’re still a bit worried you might miss the perfect white, Ralph Lauren’s “Whitewash” paint palette has 72 shades. Look for the whitest most neutral piece of paper you can find to fan out your carefully selected white paint chips. It’s the easiest way to distinguish among the various shades of white.
Next time: Wall Color Selection #7: White Room Service