SW Pure White – The SECOND Best White Paint Colour
White is IN – and not just relating to wine, sneakers and SUV’s, I’m talking whole home paint colour palettes of white-on-white-on-WHITE.
But sadly, that doesn’t mean that EVERY home can pull off white walls. In fact, the stars need to align with regard to exposures, finishes, furnishings and tastes in order to pull off a white paint palette – and I can confidently say that they aligned PERFECTLY for one of my E-design clients. She didn’t just have the cajones to pull it of, she had the style to boot…
And what white did she choose? Sherwin Williams Pure White, which is officially my 2nd fave white in the world (aren’t you dying to know my first? It starts with char and ends with donnay). Seriously though, keep reading and you’ll find out a few of my OTHER fave white paint colours. Stop reading and you’ll get a spankin’ with a wet noodle.
And I would LOVE to show you the before photos, but unfortunately, they were the Realtors photos and I’m not legally allowed to use those on my site (insert pouting face here).
The LRV of Pure White
Usually, I like to start with the UNDERTONES of a colour and then work into the LRV, however, with a colour this light, the LRV plays a big part in it. Pure White has an LRV of 84, so it’s what I call pretty damn white – but not stark white.
If you aren’t familiar with LRV, then you should take a gander here – it’s kind of a big deal. So, why is it even more important with Pure White? Well, with an LRV of 84, this colour is so light that there is very little colourant mixed in, leaving LESS room for those creepy undertones that can pop up unexpectedly.
The Undertones of Pure White
Pure White has very little colourant in it, which is why it’s LRV is so darned high! It has a wee wink of black (which just softens it) and a drop of yellow which makes it slightly warm. But really, when I say SLIGHTLY…I mean it.
The Nature of White
Like ANY white, Pure White can EASILY pick up cues from it’s environment.
THIS is not Pure White, it’s BM Chantilly Lace. However, it shows you how even a truer white like BM Chantilly Lace can pick up cues from its environment! Put this bad boy in a north facing room (or non-extreme southern location such as this one) and it can look DRASTICALLY more clean and crisp!
So, if you have a bright red couch, Pure White will reflect back a subtle pink hue. If you have TONS of grass/landscaping it could pick up a wee wink o’ green. So, it isn’t always about the white you choose BEING those colours, it’s about what it’s reflecting back at you, which leads us onto our next topic…exposure.
Pure White in a South or West Facing Room
ALL of the rooms in my client’s home are south facing rooms, so she has that lovely warm light coming in which sits SO well with Pure White – she really made a fantastic choice – in colour AND dog.
In a west facing room, you might not get that same warm glow in the morning when the sun is on the opposite side, however as the afternoon progresses things will warm up nicely, without going too far.
HOWEVER, if you have a south facing room and don’t LOVE warm whites, then you might want to look at a few different whites that don’t have that wink of warmth in them.
Pure White in a North Facing Room
Northern light is a cool gray light that can cast a touch blue. So, in a north facing room, you might find that Pure White has a slightly cleaner edge to it vs the softness that you’d find in some other lights. If you have a north facing room and want a really warm soft white, you might want to choose another white paint colour.
The exception to that? My client’s house. She lives in Maui (I’m desperately jealous as I hunker down in my igloo), so she gets an EXCEPTIONAL amount of warm sunshine and finds that even her northern exposure isn’t that grayed-out (as shown in the previous example of Chantilly Lace!). Colour is so friggin’ cool.
Now, because I ONLY use my own client’s photos, I don’t have a good shot of Pure White in a north facing room, but you can expect that it won’t hold it’s warmth like it does in the above photo, but it also WON’T be a cold, icy or stark white.
And also, because I have wicked cool clients, I can show you how Pure White shifts from day to night!
Pure White in the daytime with no light bulbs…
And Pure White in the early evening with light bulbs…
In the above photo, you can see how Pure White softens that little bit with the warm bulbs compared to the brighter look of the previous photo. This is the LIGHT warming up Pure White, not Pure White itself.
The Best White for Kitchen Cabinets? Pure White
I LOVE Pure White on cabinets – and ANY white on the countertops, as long as it’s in a glass (I’ll fit a wine innuendo in anywhere I can). It’s bright enough to suit any number of quartz/granite/marble countertops (ones that can pull off a white paint colour) without being too modern/stark looking where that look isn’t wanted.
Pure White vs…
Now Pure White isn’t the ONLY popular white paint colours, so let’s look at some comparisons of the top white paint colours…
SW Pure White vs SW Extra White
Extra White is more of a clean/sharp look that can cast just slightly cool vs Pure White
SW Pure White vs BM Chantilly Lace
Really, these are like opposites. Pure White leans that WEE wink soft, Chantilly Lace acts pretty darned white, but can lean a wee tiny wink cool. You wouldn’t know it in THIS photo, which is from my Maui client. Even though this is northern exposure, the light comes across WAY warmer.
SW Pure White vs SW Alabaster
Alabaster is a warmer, softer, creamier white compared to Pure White and has more body to it.
SW Pure White vs BM White Dove
White Dove is a soft warm white along similar lines to Alabaster, but not AS creamy. AND…it’s my other fave for sure.
So, there you have it. And if you did your reading, you’ll know that BM White Dove IS my absolute fave white paint colour – this month anyway 😉
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