Shades of White

I decided early on that I wanted to paint the interior of the house white. I loved the simplicity of it, and having this blank canvas allows me to decorate and accessorize with a variety of decor and pops of color throughout the house.

I had learned from previous experience that color doesn’t always look the same once it is on the wall. Some rooms have natural light, while others have very little. Colors I loved in the dining room, looked way too dark in the living room. It can get quite frustrating, even more so after you’ve painted an entire room and hate the color.

I was determined not to make that mistake with this house. I went to Sherwin Williams three different times and got six or seven samples. Possibly more…I’m not sure, I lost count. Who knew there were so many shades of white!?

I started with Eider White, Alabaster, and Shoji White. My main concern at this point was finding a white that wasn’t a cream, but wouldn’t blend with the trim and provided some contrast. I picked Eider White because it was a Pottery Barn color, and who doesn’t love Pottery Barn? Alabaster because the Sherwin Williams sales rep told me it was the most popular white of 2015, and Shoji White because it was also a popular white and recommended in a design article I had read.

paint colors

I painted each sample on three different walls of the house. In the dining room on a wall that gets a lot of natural light and next to the trim, in the living room over the mantel, and the darkest corner of the living room. It was irritating because the colors were different on each wall.


I liked Alabaster in the living room, but it looked washed out in the dining room. Eider White didn’t look too bad in the dining room, but looked like a purple gray in the living room. Initially, I thought this would be the color I would chose.


Shoji White was just…blah. It wasn’t white, but it wasn’t a cream. I didn’t like it. Back to Sherwin Williams for more samples.


It went like this for about a week. On my last visit to the paint store, I was getting desperate. Holding up a half dozen paint color cards, I asked the sales rep what he would chose. He looked at me and said, “I don’t know, I mean it’s all white.” At that moment, I wanted to throw the paint cards in the air and scream, “they’re not all white! How can you not see the difference?! You work at a paint store! AHHHHHH!!!!” Instead, my silent scowl conveyed my annoyance and he quickly picked one and walked away.

As it turns out the sales rep was quite helpful because that was the color I ended up picking. The last sample I purchased, Pearly White, was the winner! I absolutely love this color, and am so happy I didn’t give up and just settle for any old white.


Once the walls were patched and primed, it was time for the first coat of color. The entire first floor looks completely different, even with just a coat of primer. I’m not posting pictures of the walls painted Pearly White only because the living and dining room are almost finished, and I didn’t want to give anything away. Final reveal post coming soon!



Primed and ready for color
Primed and ready for color



2 thoughts on “Shades of White

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