Miller-COTY23

How to Choose the Right White

Choosing a white for your painting project seems easy right? I mean really- how hard can it be?  “White” is the most popular color for interior spaces for many reasons including the fact that it is a neutral backdrop for furnishings, tile, carpeting, and artwork.  Plus, it can make your home feel fresh, bright, and new.  However, as many of us have learned, finding the RIGHT white can present challenges as there are so many different whites to choose from.

UNDERTONES

The key to choosing the right white for your project is to pay attention to a color’s undertones. Undertones are not always readily apparent and can be hard to see from a little paint chip, but they can be the reason why colors do not look as expected once painted. There are so many different whites out there that the best place to start is to decide if you want a cool white or a warm white.  If you want a cool white, look at colors with greyish or blueish undertones and if you want a warm white, look at colors with brownish or golden undertones.  One way to better identify undertones is by holding a paint chip against a piece of white paper and the undertones should become easier to see.

Here are some examples of cool whites from Miller Paint:

swatch_0000_white shoulders 1265

White Shoulders | 1265

tip_of_iceburg

Tip of The Iceberg | R002

snowcap

Snow Cap | E1010

Here are some examples of warm whites from Miller Paint:

Sugar Dust | 0011

Sugar Dust | 0011

mushroom

Mushroom | R012

Elusive White | 0002

Elusive White | 0002

LIGHT

The two biggest things that can affect color are light and scale. For example, a large window with a beautiful view to the outdoors could cast green reflective light onto the interior walls. In that case, you would want to look a white that has a reddish or brownish undertones to help neutralize the green light from outside.

Interior-Green_dd
Sugar Dust | 0011

Sugar Dust | 0011

Sugar Dust | 0011 has a touch of umber that helps neutralize the green reflective ,light from outside in this dining room.

SCALE

Regarding scale, colors often appear lighter and brighter when painted on the exterior of a home, as the surface area is exposed to much more natural light than inside a home.  For that reason, if you are considering a white for the exterior, we recommend looking at shades of white that have a bit of value to them as they will appear lighter than the color chip when painted.

Exterior_sq
Featherstone | 0229

Featherstone | 0229

Featherstone | 0229 is a creamy off-white that appears lighter than the color chip when painted on the exterior of this home due to scale and natural light.

Samplersq

TEST

We always recommend painting a sample of the color you are interested in prior to doing the whole project so you can see how the light and scale affect color as it grows from a little chip to large swatch. And don’t be afraid to go big with your paint test swatch! We suggest painting at least a 2’ x 2’ sample on different sides of your home for the best results.

help

COLOR HELP

We understand that even with these tips that choosing color can still be a challenge.  We are here to help!  Stop by you local Miller Paint store and let one of our sales associates help you narrow down your options. Or, schedule a color consultation with one of our color experts  at your home or online here.

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