Use white, or very white


What color should you paint the walls? …, that’s a trick question….

You’re an Architect. All walls should be white.

Of course, they should. Obviously, that’s the only choice, The ONLY choice, no options, no other possiblities, none, nothing, just go with white…

whitey, white, white, whitey, white with extra whiteness. WHA-ITE!

But, I have witnessed a handful of clients who resist this. (I know…?!) Some have suggested that a “color” might “warm” up the space. Some, have suggested a “bright” color, or even (gasp) a  “pastel”! Ridiculous, right? But it has happened, and you should be prepared for this, because, try as you might to convince them of the clear benefits of white walls, sometimes your client will want a different color.

You should try to guide them away from any use of color. You should point out that white will make the space seem larger. You should use terms like “purity”, “simplicity”, or “elegance”. It’s also effective to wave your arms around in wide circular patterns. Look like you know what you’re talking about. Repeat the word “simple” as often as required. Try to associate this with “less expensive”

But, don’t say “less expensive”!!! – Just imply it, or better yet let them infer it.

Usually the client will get fatigued. Or, they’ll need to leave for another meeting, and you’ll be able to leave all the walls white. When they call the next day, send it to voicemail. They’ll probably give up eventually. Plus, if you wait long enough, you can point out that you don’t have time to change the wall colors if they want to meet their deadline.

As a last resort, here are the only architecturally acceptable alternatives to white:

  1. Clear
  2. White Birch
  3. Transparent
  4. Really expensive
  5. Metallic
  6. more white

Stick to your guns on this one. There are some things we can’t compromise on.

Otherwise, the terrorist win.

{ coffee with an architect }


all photos are very white and from kevindooley’s photostream on Flickr (used under creative commons license)

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