• Pat Browne

All white scheme emphasises space and light

Canadian designers love an all-white interior, but it takes skill and texture to ensure this style does not feel cold and sterile. Staged for sale, the centre townhouse has used the all-white tone-on-tone style to emphasis size and airiness of these homes.

In theory, an all-white bleached-out space should be stark and uninviting, the visual reality can be warm and welcoming. And as we all know, light colours expand space and push out darkness. A milky-hued environ is the perfect blank canvas for creating a striking space that never gets old. There is, however, an art to making white rooms look effortless. We’re talking texture-rich, ivory-infused rooms.


In white rooms, texture is your best friend

A space can be designed to look visually appealing in all white – a timeless style that transcends period and country – but it takes texture to make it warm and inviting. Texture is design speak for layering. It can include using different types of textiles, rugs, art, paint, marble, ceramic, furniture. The common thread is colour – or in this case the lack of it – but the balance is the mix of textures. Refinished wood floors pop against the white of the overall scheme. Combined, these elements make a room feel special and alive.


White is having a moment

Painting a space white makes you notice the little things, the texture, the wood, the carpets. It amplifies the light and in a centre townhouse, that is doubly important. The perfect complement to white, is white metal which you’ll see in all the fixtures in this space.

Mismatch your whites

Layering light, tonal hues will diversify the overall look and add dimension to the space. To warm up white, bring in natural elements such as marble and greenery. In the living-room of this house, the white furniture sits on a carpet that evokes feelings of branches which is mirrored in the artwork on the wall opposite the sofa.

Bathrooms get a new lease on life

Both bathrooms in this house have been fully renovated. The inclusion of ceramic tile with a marble-veining effect gives you the look of marble without the maintenance. All white vanities with white metal framed mirrors help light bounce around the room. Swapping out one of the tubs to accommodate a luxury walk-in shower with bench gives you the best of both worlds.

Kitchen reno take advantage of the long interior wall

An all-white kitchen with a full wall of counter space creates a covet-worthy work-space. Simple shaker style cabinets never go out of style. Easy maintenance quartz countertops ensure that all surfaces are ready for use in both hot and cold situations.


In this case, the designer chose to maintain the partial wall between the kitchen and dining area to provide separation between kitchen prep mess and a more formal eating area.

Let your art do the talking

Art is the perfect complement to every space, especially monochromatism. There’s a reason why art galleries use white walls. It means even quiet pieces get to speak. Any and all art will work in a white space. Colour will pop and quiet canvasses have their moment in the sun.

A family room that demonstrates the size of our spaces

By keeping the colour palate constant and moving the furniture away from the walls, the designer has demonstrated how big our spaces are. The white walls, the almost white (grey) sectional and a grey and white rug emphasize the amount of available space.

A simple bedroom

All bedrooms in this house feature dark hard-wood floors that provide contrast to a white and grey colour scheme. Square lines are repeated throughout from the semi-flush mount light fixture to the bedframe and side tables.

Outdoor spaces become even more important in summer months

In an all-white space, the easiest way to add warmth is to bring the outdoors (or add natural elements) into the space. French doors at the back of the kitchen leads to a slightly terraced back garden patio/deck combination. Shade from mature trees lets the sun dapple down on the comfortable seating area. Planter boxes along the adjoining fences provides a splash of colour.

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