When to use warm whites

If you want to create a welcoming atmosphere, choose warm whites that have a little red or yellow in them. These hues create a soft and relaxing atmosphere, so are ideal for bedrooms and living rooms. As warm whites reflect light well, they are also good to use in north-facing rooms, which often have less natural light than south-facing rooms.

When to use cool whites

Cool whites have blue, grey or green undertones, making them look crisp and clean. For a serene, contemporary look, try using cool whites to create strong silhouettes and sharp lines. You’ll find that they also do a great job of showing off striking accessories and artwork.

Cool whites are useful in small rooms, because they have the effect of making walls recede and so a space looks bigger. They also neutralise bright light, so work well in rooms that get a lot of sun, particularly in south- and east-facing rooms.

Mix whites for a sophisticated look

If you’re feeling adventurous, have a go at combining warm and cool whites. Here, cool white walls and a warm white ceiling, floor and table create the perfect backdrop for ornate furniture, striking accessories and a beautiful rug. This creates a classic scheme that surprises in its sophisticated simplicity.