Our new house was advertised as “move-in ready.”
Well, let me back up. We had just decided that a fixer-up home in our neighborhood was going to be more than we bargained for and that we should up our price range a little bit and find something with a few more updates.
The house we chose was the very next home we looked at. It was 20 years newer, had a brand new roof, had hardwoods, and had a master bathroom & closet, all of which the “fixer upper” was lacking. We were smitten at this “move-in ready” home.
However, once we went back a few more times and started really looking at things, we realized this home was not “move-in ready” to us. The paint was extremely patchy and you could see where they had tried to fix some spots. There were seams & water damage from a previous leaky roof downstairs in the main rooms and all of the bedrooms were painted different colors, ranging from light green to bright turquoise.
We knew we need to paint the entire house. After polling all of my friends (and the internet!), I interviewed 3 different painters. We chose the middle range quote and he was more fantastic than I could ever imagine.
I decided to paint the entire house one color, as a blank canvas. We haven’t moved our furniture in yet, but I have a feeling that we are going to need to eventually slowly replace some of the furniture to better fit the rooms. One day, we will have more color in our house (maybe), but for right now, I really wanted ALL WHITE EVERYTHING.
So, onto picking the right white paint.
Choosing the Right White Paint
Consider the lighting in the room.
- We got really lucky in this area. Every single room in our house has windows in it, except the kitchen. There is so much natural light coming in through every room. This made it extremely easy for us, but I know this is not always the case. You should place your paint samples in room and view at different times of the day. The morning (11 AM), the golden hour (5 PM), and at night (9 PM) when you have your lights on. You will be able to see the different shades and how light affects the overall color. You may be surprised to find that your “white” doesn’t look so bright when it is dark outside and your have artificial light shining on it.
Warmer vs. cooler tones, which do you prefer?
- This is one of the most important things to decide when choosing your white paints. Do you prefer a greigey-white (blue or black undertones) or do you prefer warm beigey-white (yellow or green undertones)? When you go to your paint supplier on the back of the card it will tell you the complementary colors in the paint. I found that extremely helpful to see the tones in the color. This undertones will come out in different lighting and depending on the percentages can be extreme. There is one other option, which isn’t as common, the base paint, which is what I chose. I preferred to have a pure, true white.
How to paint samples, effectively.
- You should paint the sample on a large white poster board. A lot of people seem to paint the color on the wall, which is not going to give you the real color you are looking at. It is going to show the undertones coming from the paint underneath. The next option is hanging swatches on the wall, which are so small, you can’t really get a feel for it. Painting the samples on a large white poster board gives you no undertones and a large sample to really give you an idea of the paint color.
So what did I choose?
- I chose Pure White for the walls and Extra White by Sherwin Williams for the trim and ceiling. These colors are extremely similar and I love the way they flow together seamlessly. I especially love it in the living room and foyer where the ceilings are high and it looks like the walls never stop. The natural light throughout the house provides a light, airy, and clean look.
Happy Decorating, The Barbee Housewife