So for a long time now I’ve been thinking about painting our dining room white. I know that probably doesn’t come as a surprise, seeing as how I like to paint everything white, but it’s been something I’ve gone back and forth on for a while. I always hesitated because I really did love the color we already had on the walls. It was a creamy light beige and it’s actually the color that’s in the majority of our home. I’ve loved it for two years now, but I was itching for a change. You know how that happens every now and then, right? There’s really no reason for it other than I wanted something new and fresh. Well believe it or not, this is the first time I’ve ever painted any wall white. I’ve always used color. Like that time I painted the kitchen in our first home pumpkin orange (yep, true story!) or the bathroom I painted mud brown. I’ve never done white, so this was definitely a first for me. Well I finally got up the nerve to do it and I can’t wait to show you guys how it turned out. I also have some thoughts to share on the whole process, so I’m going to chat about a few things you need to know if you’re thinking about painting a room white in your own home. Ok, let’s get to it, shall we? Just to refresh your memory, here’s an old photo of our dining room from earlier this year:
This is Autumn Blonde by Sherwin Williams. I really have loved this color for a long time. But it was starting to look a bit too bright to me and I wanted to tone things down in this room. Ok, here’s how it looks now:
Quite the difference, right?! I’m always amazed at how white paint can transform just about anything. But let me tell you, choosing the perfect white is much harder than you’d think. There are about a gazillion choices and each one can look different depending on whether it has a cool or warm tint, undertones, lighting, trim color, etc. I did quite a bit of research on the best white paints and ultimately I went with Alabaster White by Sherwin Williams. I love this color because it’s a warm white with a bit of a gray undertone, I don’t notice any yellow or green tint in it at all. Plus it’s definitely not a bright white, which is what I wanted for this room.
The trim is Cloud White and beadboard is painted with Ultra Pure White by Behr, which you can see is a brighter white in comparison with the Alabaster. I was a little nervous about how the different shades of white would play against each other, but I think they all work nicely together. I’m actually glad there is a little variation in the whites. I don’t think I would have liked them all to be the exact same color.
My thoughts on the process and what you need to know before painting any room white:
- For this project we paid extra for the “fancy” paint. I was told we’d only need one coat, but that definitely didn’t happen. We ended up doing two coats of paint to cover the cream color underneath. So lesson learned–it will probably take more paint than you think when it comes to whites.
- Immediately after we painted the room I honestly felt like it looked a bit cold. Sure, it was brighter, but it didn’t have a real cozy vibe, which was my biggest fear going into it. It wasn’t until I started adding the decor back in that I felt the room soften, if that makes sense. I’m still figuring it out, but I think a white room needs more texture and layering in order for it to really come alive and not feel so sterile.
- White paint is super tricky and can look different depending on how much light your room gets throughout the day. I’ve noticed the walls in our dining room seem to look the best during times with lots of sunshine. It just looks very fresh and vibrant. But when it’s darker I tend to notice the gray undertones more and I don’t feel like it looks as good. Lighting can really impact how any white paint looks, so this is just something to keep in mind depending on how much natural light your room gets.
- Now that our room is white, I love how all my decor seems to compliment the walls. One thing that always bothered me about the cream color was how it looked against all my vintage decor. I never felt like the two blended with each other very well. But the white walls let all the focus be on the decor and it makes a great canvas for any color scheme.
- I think the the variation in the different shades of white between the trim, beadboard, and walls really help to pull off this all-white look. They’re all working together to give the room more dimension, which is important when it comes to whites.
Well after going through the process of painting my first white room and living with it for a few weeks now, I can honestly say I do love it. Especially when the sunshine comes streaming in–the whole room is so bright and happy. It’s been a fun change and I’m glad I decided to go for it. And I hope this post was helpful if you’re thinking about going the all-white route in your own home. I know it can seem a bit scary, especially since there are so many darn whites to choose from, but the fun thing about paint is you can always change things up without much time or effort.
Thanks so much for stopping by the blog today! I’d love to hear what you think of my new white dining room. And please let me know if you have any questions at all, I’d love to chat!
Shop the room: