Few people enjoy painting so it’s important we get the right shade of paint first time round!
Having gotten caught out in the past picking the wrong shade of white paint (what I thought would be a lovely stoney white ended up looking like baby poo and called for an immediate redo!), we wanted to make sure we didn’t have the same issue at Bonnie’s house where we’re making over her bedroom.
We’re so thrilled with the results of this lovely, warm Monsta grey white paint and are sharing our practical tips to get the perfect shade of white paint.
But first, a quick look at the before and after!
1. Think about whether you want a cool or a warm white
Warm whites are tinted with creamy, red or brown tones, whereas cool whites are tinted with black, blue or green tones.
Warm whites are considered softer shades, creating a calming feel and particularly suit coastal or cabin style homes.
Cool whites create the illusion of more space and suit contemporary style homes.
2. North or south facing room
Another consideration of whether to select a warm or cool white tone is how much natural light the space gets.
South-facing rooms are often quite dark so a warmer white will help this space to feel cosy and inviting.
On the other hand, north-facing rooms can be flooded with natural light and a cool white can help balance brilliance.
3. Consider other colours in space
If you’re renovating, chances are you may need to consider existing materials in the space, such as carpet, curtains or fixed hardware.
In Bonnie’s room, she has a brown carpet that’s in good condition so will be staying. If we were to have used a bright, stark white, this could have appeared blueish when paired with the creamy carpet so we steered away from these tones and looked for a white that had some warmth to it.
Likewise if you have timber flooring, warmer whites often blend more seamlessly in these spaces whereas cool whites can appear slightingly green (it depends on the tint colours used though).
Too much contrast between existing colours and the tint used in your paint will throw colours you don’t want so look for some level of consistency in the undertones.
4. Narrow your choices
Once you have a fairly good idea of the type of white paint you want to select, look at colour cards to narrow your choices.
I always like to throw in a few wildcards as something that may seem slightly more creamy than I’d like can end up looking perfect once on the walls.
Ideally you want to narrow your field to 4 paints.
5. Order sample pots
It’s never a good idea to select your paint colour based on colour cards alone.
Order sample pots of the colours you narrowed down above and apply a generous amount onto the wall you will be painting. I suggest a sample swatch that’s at least 30cm by 20cm so you can imagine what it would look like on a larger scale.
Leave the colour swatches to dry and revisit them over the coming days, looking at them at different times of the day to see how the colours change depending on the amount of natural light in the room.
After this exercise, it should be obvious what paint you’d like to go ahead with.
We applied 4 colour swatches on the wall at Bonnie’s house (check out the quick clip below to see how they turned out) and ‘Light grey white’ was the perfect balance of brightness with soft grey undertones. ‘Grey white’ appeared too grey and would have further darkened her already dark bedroom. ‘Cloudy white’ appeared too white for the bedroom atmosphere we wanted to create but could be a great option for the living spaces. And ‘Cool grey white’ appeared almost blue against the brown carpet as it is better suited to a more contemporary space.
Before you begin painting, be sure to prep the walls by giving them a light sand and wash them with sugar soap. Then apply at least 1-2 coats of prep seal to cover over your existing wall colour or seal new plasterboard, creating the perfect base to begin painting.
If you’d like to receive a free set of Monsta colour cards with 20 of the most popular shades of white paints used in Australia, request one online here.
What do you think of this new colour in Bonnie’s bedroom? Stay tuned for next month when we share the DIY tutorial to achieve her Kmart hack bedside tables!