Christmas is only two weeks away. Let that sink in for a moment. It’s now mid-December and we are in peak holiday prep. We put our tree up this weekend, plus knocked down a lot of gift shopping. I even have two cookie bake days on my calendar (just call me Betty Crocker, I guess). This time of year always seems to fly by, and with the temperatures in Minneapolis at a whopping 27 degrees, it’s a great time to hunker down and snuggle up.
I love the holidays in Minnesota. I love the fresh snow, icy sunrises, festive displays. Growing up here, I didn’t know anything different, but when I moved to San Diego for college, I realized there are people in the US who have never experienced freezing temperatures. That was unfathomable to me. What is Christmas if it isn’t white?
While most people think of reds and greens this time of year, I always go back to white. Bing Crosby would be proud. Some people find white to be sterile (my mother included). I think with the proper mix of textures, white can feel just as warm and inviting as any hue. If you don’t believe me, then wait for the inspiration pics. To make sure your house doesn’t feel stark, be sure to consider the following three steps.
Vary the Tones
While it might be tempting to go heavy on white, it’s still good to add different tones so it doesn’t feel sterile. Interior designer Will Taylor says he utilizes a 60:30:10 rule. “Sixty percent of your room is made up of the primary color palette—think the largest surface areas, such as floors, walls, ceilings, etcetera,” he said. “Then 30% is the secondary palette, so this is for the furniture and soft furnishing elements of the space. Then 10% is your accent color or the pop of color. This 10% can be made up of one hero piece, such as an artwork, or it could be a series of three to five smaller items that add up to 10%, such as a vase, table lamp, and throw pillow.”
Add Plenty of Texture
This step is crucial. Adding texture and pattern to a room creates depth and dimension. Without it, your room can feel visually uninteresting, which can definitely drive that “stark” vibe. For a living room, take a neutral couch and add a muted, knitted blanket draped over a corner plus an assortment of creamy throw pillows. For a bedroom, layer on the accent pillows and pop a woven rug under your bed. Textiles are key for bringing your palette to life.
Accessorize with Intention
Accents and decorative objects will also help make a neutral palette feel inviting. If you’re really committed to the clean, simple palette, then search for art or accents that don the scheme but add pattern and flair. If you tend to be more on the minimalist side, have no fear. A single piece can suffice. Perhaps search for an art print with greater scale, or find an object that really makes a statement.
While this post is titled, Winter Whites, let’s be clear: a neutral palette transcends the full calendar year. You can easily swap in and out accessories to align with the season – or keep the full look. The beauty of home design is that it is entirely up to you. Now, I’m going to grab a mug of coffee and snuggle up by the tree before work! As promised, here are those beautiful white inspo shots I mentioned…
Thanks for reading. Have a great day!