If you are going for a traditional monochrome look of layered whites, with black accents, it is more important to select whites with the same base tones. For example, try layers of all warm whites with yellow tones such as Resene Half Spanish White, Resene Merino, or Resene Half White. Or go for cool whites such as Resene Black White, Resene Alabaster or Resene Poured Milk.
There are also “mid-range” whites, such as Resene Half Titania, Resene Rice Cake, or Resene Quarter Wheatfield, which can work with cool or warm whites, as they change more with changing light.
Have fun with math
If you’re not sure how or where to start layering the shades of your chosen monochrome color, a few guidelines may help:
The 60 – 30 – 10 rule. This divides a room into percentages of color usage. Use your primary color on 60 percent of the room. This will be what gives the first impression of your monochrome room, so anyone who walks in registers it as a blue room or a red room – regardless of your color choice.
Add to that by decorating 30 percent of your room in your secondary color (if it’s easier, think about half as much as your primary color). In a monochrome room it will be the same color but, in one shade, or two darker or lighter.
Then add highlights in an accent shade that is noticeably darker or lighter than your main color.
When calculating percentages, be sure to include your furniture, design features, accessories, and even the floor. For total commitment to the theme, you can even choose to use your ceiling color. Remember that darker shades on the ceiling will make a room appear smaller. It doesn’t have to be bad – just keep it in mind.
For example, in a yellow space, you can try walls, rugs, heavy furniture, and cushions in sunny tones such as Resene Corn as the main color. Add touches of freshness with paler Resene Quarter Moonbeam and accents in bold Resene Spotlight. It would be a nice combination in a kid’s room or even a fun kitchen or bathroom.