The Summer White

After a month of rainbows in June, it’s time to talk about the one color that didn’t quite make the arc nor Frank Sinatra’s lyrics – the color white. Why talk about white in July? Summer is the time of year when days are longer and light-filled. July is also a time of many white-inspired matrimonial celebrations.

When I think of white, I think of the diamond of the crayon box. Unfiltered, unadorned, natural and simple, white is the presence and reflection of all other colors simultaneously. It is not only an iconic color in fashion, where it’s celebrated in the summer but it’s a mainstay for me in the hospitality and design worlds.

In hospitality, white is a more than just a staple color. Nothing says “elegant,” “classic” and “clean” more than a white 400 thread count cotton duvet in your guest room. Whites naturally give guests a feeling of serenity and even safety being in a new destination.  White towels are another way guests experience a hotel’s standards of cleanliness.  Aside from towel quality, towel color is crucial. Any remnant of a previous guest’s experience showing up on a towel is an absolute faux pas.  However, designing with white fabrics can be a challenge in a hotel setting. If the owner is adamant for the specific look, a designer ensures adding a specific amount of cushions into the attic stock to be rotated in and out if there are any oops moments!

Of course, white shows up in so many other ways aside from towels and linens. First, kitchen and bathroom design also favors white because of its clean and simple appearance.  In addition, white magic shows up in countless interior settings. It can be the white boucle couch dominating a room with blue or deep red walls.  It can also be the white linen floor to ceiling curtains that can create a freshness in a space with less natural sunlight. And don’t think all shades of white are equal. White may be simple but it’s also sophisticated! Did you know there are hundreds of shades?Distinguishing between shades of white could become the next wine tasting experience.

No designer did white quite like British color pioneer Syrie Maugum. Syrie took white decor to a rock-star level in the 1920’s and 1930’s, where Victorian flowers and deeper hues dominated interior and fashion.  In most of her designs, Syrie kept things all white or with very little color hue. Syrie’s boldness at the time makes me think that she too had her own version of, “Creativity is Everything!”

If there is anything that you remember from July’s blog, it’s that white never goes out of style and should be celebrated throughout the year. So go ahead and and keep wearing those wonderful white jeans, dresses, handbags, suits, shoes, or whatever it is that tickles your fancy.


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