White is one of the most classic of interior design looks, as it’s quiet, serene and doesn’t demand attention. White is so stylish and inviting and sets the base for so many looks from coastal to farmhouse to elegantly chic.
White can be a challenging color to live with when sticky handed children, muddy paws, wine and food are taken into decorating consideration. Don’t let that deter you though…it’s a gorgeous base and that I have loved for years! Here are my top tips on how to live with the all-white look…
How To Live With White In A Casual Home – And Clean It
For whites in furniture that are fabulous and yet functional, slipcovers are the ultimate solution. I have raised my children in our Miami home and at our beach home we often entertain and washable white slipcovers always do the trick and look great. My sofa and love seat at the beach are from Pottery Barn and have stood the test of time so far and are comfortable as well as fashionable.
Another option is to use outdoor fabrics when selecting seating, or forgiving white leather.
HOW TO CLEAN WHITE LINENS & FABRICS
- Our sheets and towels are all white and are washed weekly. I don’t use chlorine bleach because it weakens the fabric and shortens the life span of linens. Use the hottest water that you can and one of my favorite products for bed linens and towels that need some extra oomph in whitening is Oxiclean powder.
- Less is more and I give them a longer soak in the washer (sometimes with a cup of baking soda) and occasionally a white vinegar rinse to remove any soap build up.
- Weather permitting, dry in the sunshine and if possible…lay on the grass. The chlorophyll will act as a natural brightener to the white.
- *Never use fabric softeners or spray starch when storing fine linens, as it can cause them to yellow over time.
- If you do get a stain on your white slipcovered furniture and don’t feel like taking off for washing, I have had success with several methods that you could try. A spray and wipe off of Oxiclean Stain Remover directly on the spot as soon as you see it generally works well. If the stain has been sitting there awhile take a toothbrush and some hot water after spraying and work it out, taking care not to damage the fabric.
- Oxiclean powder or Biz are some cleaners that I always have on hand too and make into a scrub for larger stained areas (muddy paws).