I learned something new about white last year when I was working on a project that I finally photographed this past week.
Since the project wasn’t finished until last winter and my client’s home overlooks a stunning mountain view, (Crystal and Rob Hasell, Crystal is the Owner and Director of Studio B Yoga here in Chilliwack) I wanted to wait until the leaves were back on the trees for the photo shoot.
I shopped until I dropped this week, for flowers and miscellaneous items still missing from some of her rooms. Then spent three full days styling her house to perfection prior to the photoshoot. Then we spent two days with Barry Calhoun shooting the house.
Barry was awesome. It’s absolutely true what he says on his website, “He’s willing to run from elephants if it means getting the best shot possible.
He was tireless, and when I would look at yet another photo that he had downloaded to his laptop AGAIN and think to myself “Well, we could move those towels into the shot but I’ll let it go”, that’s when HE would notice and mention it. I can’t wait to work with him again. Here he is on my instagram.
This was the view from Crystal and Rob’s home on March 31 last year, when we were choosing fabrics. Our winter was so bad this year that we were about 1 1/2 months behind. You can see that the colour palette we chose coordinates with her view.
So here’s what happened. I chose BM Chantilly Lace for the cabinets and the wood work throughout the house.
When the cabinets were installed, I noticed that they didn’t exactly match the trim colour. In fact, they looked off-white, not the true-white I had chosen (If you’ve read my White eBook, you’ll understand what I’m talking about).
So I pulled out my Chantilly Lace paint chip and held it up against the cabinets.
It was a perfect match.
Then I did the same with the trim colour.
It was also a perfect match.
The bottom line. Your cabinet guy uses his own lacquer to spray the cabinets, therefore, it will RARELY, if ever exactly match the paint from the paint store.
So one way to coordinate them is to choose a whiter white for the cabinet colour than the trim colour.
I had this conversation with Traci Zeller (an interior designer and True Colour Expert) at High Point Market last weekend and she emailed me this photo to use in this post.
The cabinets are SW Extra White and the trim colour is SW Snowbound. You can see in this photo (below) that the casings around the door in fact still look slightly whiter than the lacquered cabinets which will OFTEN end up creamier.
Since both colour chips will match, you need to COORDINATE the trim colour.
Interior Design by Traci Zeller
So what this means is that you can’t get the door sample matched by the paint company because they technically do match. All you can do is coordinate your new trim colour with your kitchen cabinets.
Now, if you’ve done this already and noticed that they don’t match, now you don’t have to be cranky anymore.
You won’t notice that they are different once the room is decorated, there will be too many other things to look at.
And you don’t notice it in all lights. This is the first time I have ever noticed this phenomenon and I have never received an email from a reader complaining about this dilemma, which is the thing I wonder about the most?
When I looked at my kitchen, I realized that there is only one area in my kitchen where the door casing is directly beside my cabinets and it does look slightly different, but it wasn’t enough for me to notice until now.
Elizabeth’s Kitchen (her existing adjoining doors were already white, not related to her glazed cabinets)
My sister Elizabeth is getting a new quartz countertop on her island to replace the blotchy, gold, brown and cream laminate countertop (above). We will also install new panelling so it looks like a piece of furniture (like an island should look).
Her panelling will coordinate with the existing cabinets and the base will look like this photo (below).
However, Mike at Quality Cabinets (who is installing the millwork) said that it would be more cost effective to have the cabinet side painted on site (you can’t spray the actual island on-site anyway) but then, he said “Be warned, your painted panelling will not EXACTLY match the existing drawers/cabinets because again, there will be two different paints used.”
This also explains why (and I talk about this in my exterior on-line training webinar) my garage doors don’t match the vinyl siding even though I took a sample of the siding to the paint store. Because obviously (well only obvious to me AFTER this happened to me) vinyl is not the same as paint.
Over to you my lovelies, have you ever had this happen to you? I’m just amazed that no one has ever asked me this question until I discovered it for myself? Well Traci said she did mention it to me before, but I guess it didn’t land until I saw it with my own eyes.
Bottom line, I think there are too many variables to try and ‘coordinate’ the trim colour. If NO ONE has ever emailed me with this dilemma then it must be close enough most of the time. So unless you are not choosing paint colours with a designer who has experienced this many times, I would still go with the same colour for trim and cabinets. However, before you install backsplash tile, I would look again, and make that decision last, in case you have to go with off-white instead of true-white or cream instead of off-white.
Here is yet another argument for why you should go with the SAFE option for tile or countertops (hard finishes), rather than the more CREATIVE or RISKY choice. There are way too many factors involved in getting just plain whites to match but at least you can live with different whites easier than different patterns or undertones that don’t match in the end.
Terreeia and I leave for our SOLD OUT Specify Colour with Confidence workshop in Chicago tomorrow, I’m so excited, I love leading this course so much! And there’s always something new to talk about!
There are still two spaces left for my second course in Chicago the following weekend here.
Don’t forget to fill us in on your experience with different paint companies in the comments below.