There are so many different paint colours – don’t always use white!

If we look back to the history of interiors we realize that our habit to systematically paint skirting and architraves in brilliant white dates back to the Victorian Era.

Before that, in Georgian times, skirting boards and the lower three quarter section of the wall would all be painted in the same color in order to elongate the walls and raise the perceived height of the ceilings.

The upper quarter of the wall (from the dado rail up) and the ceilings would then all be painted in contrasting color.  The windows and door frames however, would stay as they are.

Room painted greenIf we look at the recent trends we are seeing a very definite change in this process which has led us to advise you to change what comes naturally and try something new. Make it your thing in 2019 to ban brilliant white, especially glossy brilliant white from your woodwork. Ceilings and walls too, no longer need to be white!

We know what you are going to say; ….”white is safe”!…. “White goes with everything…” Why would you not use it?

So, let’s start to talk about light. Conversely to popular opinion, most people are under the impression that white reflects light, which is correct,… but to reflect light, we need natural light.

So when there is a small dark room that is yearning for more light, the simple answer is not just to paint the walls white, as it will not work. In a small dark room without a big window, your best bet is to paint it in a dark, rich colour that will give it immense depth and character rather than fighting for light that you cannot get.

Walls painted dark colourAnother example are the sometimes dark corridors of a home or commercial building that don’t often get much natural light streaming in. In these we recommend to use bold colors like Storm Cloud from @Plascon or Englist Mist from @Dulux on the walls and then you would leave your door frames and doors a natural wood colour.

If after that, you are still struggle to make this bold step towards banning white from our walls, why not start with baby steps by choosing your white differently. Maybe a chalk white, an eggshell white or a even a white with a light pink undertone will fit your space better?

Wall painted soft pastelWhen choosing paint colours, also think about the orientation of the room. North facing rooms  (in the Southern Hemisphere) will have lots of yellow light flooding into the room so if you use an ivory white or a frothy milk white, your walls could end up looking really yellow. In these cases we’d recommend you to use something like Antique petal from Plascon or Chalk Blush from Dulux. If on the other hand your room is South Facing you won’t get a lot of sunlight and here you can use paint colours such as Cameo Silk from Dulux or Ivory white from Plascon.

The bottom line is to ask yourself the question before defaulting to white automatically every time. Yes your window frames; especially the cottage pain and sash windows look brilliant in white but ask yourself if white is absolutely the only colour that will work best but try not to use it by default every single time!

It takes practice and adjustment but after a while you will quickly see that you will get addicted to some of the brighter, bolder palettes and more exciting paint colours as you get more confident; even for your ceilings!

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