White, white or white?

Some time ago I sat down with the colour swatches and picked out some whites. It’s a wee bit insane how many options there actually are for white… even more so when you pick out some “different” ones, only to paint them out and see that really, there’s not all that much difference. A little bit disheartening, especially when I assumed this would be one of the most fulfilling decisions for me (really?!) in the whole renovation process.

Why are we being boring and sticking to white you might be thinking? Because the lightness of the afternoon sun streaming into the lounge and “glowing” off the walls was one of the things that really struck me when we first came through at the open home. (Did that sound a bit convincing?) While the exact tone of current white is a little too green (especially at night) for me, I do want to stick with the white to keep that “goodness and light” feeling. Secondly, I tend to change my mind (we’ve been here a year and things in my mind have started to take on a whole new look than they did at the first draft…) so a blank canvas is not a bad thing. I just prefer to change out the accessories and artwork on a whim than bother with a repaint.

So, you may as well take a look at the swatches, and to make it easy I’ve pointed out the Resene Half Rice Cake which is the warm white we’ll be rolling onto these walls very soon! Trimmed with White (yes, there is a real honest to goodness White white!) skirtings, architraves, window frames etc

On the other half of the same board is a full rice cake, which is just a bit too strong and would likely go a bit dark when natural light is low (grey days like today) or non-existent (evenings). So Half it is (now I can’t say I don’t do things by halves…).

By the way, I found it useful to paint on boards so I could move them around the room and see how the colour looked in different lights. Clever huh?!



7 thoughts on “White, white or white?

  1. Andrea

    Ooh, that looks like a nice white!

    You are so right that there are so many whites available – very confusing! In the end we narrowed it down to three and painted up boards just as you have done and left them in the house to view at different times of the day. The first thing the builder said was, “what’s the difference between them?!”. I could see the difference, and I’m happy with the white we ended up picking (Dulux Mt Aspiring Half – also doing things by halves!). It makes such a difference to how you feel about the place, and let’s face it, you’re the ones living there!

    Oh, another thing I thought was funny – my dad (being an old school wallpaper kind of guy) said, “Is there a difference between the walls and the ceiling??” – it was just too much white on white for him! Hilarious – but there definitely is a big difference, considering we used plain old ceiling white on the ceiling! I have at times found it too white, but I think that just comes down to putting more on the walls and furnishings in the way of colour – which I’m sure you’ll agree I’ve been a little slack on!

    Your place is going to look fab in that colour! Lovely and warm. x

    1. Jolene Post author

      Glad you approve! We’ve gone with Resene a bit by default but I was looking at Dulux the other night too – it is probably a bit cheaper? Did you have a painter or do it yourself? Just interested to know why you chose Dulux? Resene have (or they just sell it well… the power of design/advertising!) a good range of low or no-VOC paint which I’m all for, but Dulux seem to just do the very basics in low VOC and I couldn’t find the actual VOC rating on their website which is a shame.
      We’re doing the final floor sanding and sealing coats tomorrow/Wednesday so looking forward to painting the nights away after that so we can get this kitchen in!

  2. Andrea

    I did not even consider low or no-VOC paints, only because I didn’t know about them! I even had to look up a definition (here’s what I found: http://tlc.howstuffworks.com/home/low-voc-paint.htm ). Oh well, what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, right?!

    And I think the only reason we went for Dulux was because their marketing of “Colours of New Zealand” was pretty good – shameful reason! Haha! I guess the paint names were easier to remember and related well to us, being New Zealanders! Also, I’m lazy and didn’t want too much choice!

    We had painters do it – so much more cost effective when you’re renovating the whole house in one go. If we had tried to do it (which we wanted to), it would have held up the renovations and been completely unrealistic. They did an amazing job – ceilings, walls, windows, skirtings, doors – all in a week!

    New kitchen!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! You must be champing at the bit! When will the old kitchen come out?

    1. Jolene Post author

      Ahh fickle reason! I was expecting much more from you Andrea!
      Good point about getting painters to do it so as not to hold up the builder… we’re right about at that stage now and have loads to do before our builder can really do much more. But with just doing one room at a time it’s not worth someone else doing it (plus we’re el cheapos!).
      The old kitchen coming out depends a bit on whether our builder needs to go and find another job while we catch up… if he does we might have to wait until he’s finished that before he can come back to us. But if we can we’ll just carry straight on with ripping it out and making it into a cosy new bedroom for the little one!

  3. laura Bull

    Thanks for sharing this – how did it turn out? We’re thinking much the same as you, white (as in the half rice cake) for the walls to lighten everything up, accessorise bright, but WHICH WHITE? Like you we have bits of white painted card moving around the house to see what we like the best…… although at times it’s hard to see the difference. Would have been better if I’d written the paint names on the back of ALL the cards. Oops. Oh well.

    1. Jolene Post author

      Hi Laura, so far we have painted one bedroom and the kitchen/dining area and it is a nice warm white like I thought! It does tend toward the creamy look alongside the fresh white of the trim though so if you’re not into that then I’d suggest picking a cooler or greyer toned white. Or paint your trim a different colour! Good luck!

      1. laura tolra

        Thank you for that Jolene. Creamy actually sounds good to me – we really DON”T want to end up to cold and clinical. The other very promising option is a quarter pearl lustre. There really isn’t alot in it and now that the samples have been hanging about for so long, they are part of the furniture and reckon I could live with either. Just waiting on the painter. Sigh.

        om: Duck Egg Blue

        To: lauratolra@yahoo.com Sent: Monday, 24 September 2012 2:01 PM Subject: [New comment] White, white or white?

        WordPress.com Jolene commented: “Hi Laura, so far we have painted one bedroom and the kitchen/dining area and it is a nice warm white like I thought! It does tend toward the creamy look alongside the fresh white of the trim though so if you’re not into that then I’d suggest picking a coo”

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