How to Use White Undertones in Your Interior Décor

If you’ve been looking to Pinterest or Instagram for home renovation ideas, there’s one trend that you have likely been coming across a lot lately: the all-white everything look. Whether you call it modern minimalism, a Scandinavian saturation, or just a sheer love affair with neutrals, it’s impossible to escape just how popular all-white interiors have become.

However, there’s a world of difference between a fabulously chic aesthetic and a stark, bland space. Here are three basics to remember when decorating an all-white interior, so you can achieve all white pleasure in your home.

Choose the Right Hue for You

White isn’t a colour – it’s a hue. It comes in hundreds of variations and choosing the right white can be a difficult process. Start by considering the architecture and lightening of the room you are decorating. Yellow undertones give a room a more comfortable appearance, while blue undertones give a crisper look. A space with lots of natural light is likely to look warmer, so you can use a cooler shade of white to balance the room. Rooms that are artificially lit with LED or fluorescent lighting can look cool, so go warmer. However, be careful of going to extremes either way. Too warm and your interior will look very 90s soft yellow… too cool and it will look like a soft purple.

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Strike the Right Colour Balance

One of the greatest assets of working with white is the ability to showcase your own personality and style in your décor, without having to compete with the colour on the walls and furniture. But a white-wash interior doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have any colour at all.

The 60-30-10 rule is a good guideline to follow if you want to keep a striking balance: Sixty percent of your room is made up of the primary colour palette – think the largest surface areas, such as floors, walls and ceilings. Thirty percent is the secondary palette, so this is for the furniture and soft furnishing elements of the space. Your accent colour should then make up 10 percent of your décor – this can include any artwork, sculptural pieces or elements that command attention. Display it on an all-white wall, over an all-white fireplace mantle or over your all-white bed. All eyes will go right to your one-of-a-kind artwork without you having to try!

If you do want to stick to a more neutral palette, remember to add loads of texture and shapes to your room. Think textured rugs, linen cushions or bed linen, velvet lounges, knobbly woollen knitted throws – these all work to add elements of tactile warmth to what can be an otherwise sterile environment. Stainless steel, brass, copper and gold are also trending in home décor, giving homes an earthy, modern feel all round.

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Be Warned

White doesn’t do perfection. It’s a high maintenance décor colour not meant for the faint of heart. However, while it does tend to have more serious and sterile connotations and vibes, it doesn’t mean that those with kids, pets, and a penchant to party should exclude it from their homes. Consider using faux leather and faux suedes, also khaki and white denim slipcovers, and choose a good quality topcoat for added protection on your floors. Remember: when it comes to a white interior it’s good to keep styling loose and informal, so embrace the scuffs and imperfections.

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Ready to rediscover the most versatile colour of all time? Our Décor Specialists will help you turn your blank canvas into a texture-rich, ivory-infused space that never gets old. You can also visit our showroom in Kramerville, Sandton for exclusive pre-designed home accessories and perfect milky-hued inspiration for your home.

For more information on our full-service décor and design services, or to schedule a private consultation, call us on 011 262 5225. Visit our website at to view some of our products, or send an email to

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