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Thread: Matching Whites

  1. #1
    DIY Senior Member Mike50's Avatar
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    Default Matching Whites

    One thing I have learned about making a simple color choice like white from a company like Kohler for example is that they can have in excess of
    5 versions/finishes of the noncolor "White". Now that is no problem at all if you purchase a sink-toilet "suite" from them or any manufacturer.

    How can I be assured that a Toto white will match an american standard white (for example)?

  2. #2
    Plumber jimbo's Avatar
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    Default

    As you have found out, white is the most diffucult color. In plumbing fixtures, faucets, accessories, etc. I always advise people that they must purchase everything from the same brand to assure a match. If you are buying a white Amer.Std. sink, you must let them soak you for their own basket strainer, soap dispenser, pull out faucet, etc.

    Kohler is a whole different story. Basic Kohler white, in sinks, toilets, etc. is DIFFERENT than any other company. Many tile companies actually manufacture 2 different 4" white tiles, usually 100white, and K101 kohler white.

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    Forum Admin, Expert Plumber Terry's Avatar
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    Default

    Toto "Cotton White" is close to Kohler 0 White
    Toto "Colonial White" is close to American Standard 020 White.


    Cotton White
    Last edited by Terry; 04-28-2009 at 09:31 AM.

  4. #4
    DIY Senior Member Mike50's Avatar
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    Default

    Thanks. Kohler is out of control-they came out with yet another white-
    "sea salt" go figure.

    Mike

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    DIY Member Perfectionist's Avatar
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    Default Type of material affects color too

    Hello,

    (instead of creating a new thread, I'll add my question here, if you don't mind, since its title is perfect. :-)

    QUESTIONS :

    1) Is fireclay china somewhat whiter than regular china?

    2) Is acrylic whiter than most regular china?

    3) Do acrylic whites vary a lot from a company to another one?

    4) Anyone has seen American Standard's Mezzo semi-countertop sink?

    Not only whites differ from a company to another one, but the material affects the color too : china vs. enameled vs. acrylic vs. steel vs. fireclay...

    Acrylic seems whiter than regular china (like 1% milk) unless the latter is from an European-style company, such as Duravit, Neptune, etc. Their white is blueish.

    This is what I sense from pictures, even for items from the same company...

    SITUATION

    We'll be renovating our bathroom within a couple of weeks, and after months of information research on the Web, most decisions are taken. Now we're down to the esthetic aspect of things. ;-)

    Thanks to this awesome forum, we intend to buy a Toto toilet (Ultramax or Carlyle), and already have bought our Delta 1700 series shower-bath, for their reliability.

    Since the Toto is such a big investment (it will cost between $650 and $1000, up here in Canada), we have to do things right. So we wonder which white to pick.

    ACRYLIC

    The toilet will be a few inches away from an acrylic bathtub (Neptune Daphnee)

    Our guess is that Toto's "Cotton white" would be the one to choose.

    AMERICAN STANDARD REGULAR CHINA

    And besides the toilet there will be a regulard china sink. We'll probably buy one of AS cheapest ones, since it sill be a temporary solution (between 2 and 7 years). So we'd be better off with Toto's "Colonial white".

    AMERICAN STANDARD FIRECLAY CHINA

    This sink will eventually replaced with our permanent choice, the American Standard's Mezzo sink. It is made of fireclay, which seems whiter than china... on most pictures, that is.

    But I've never seen it in person, nor besides acrylic (tub) nor regular china (toilet) on AS pictures.

    I base my assumption that fireclay is whiter than AS regular china on most fireclay sinks I've seen. But then again, they usually were high-end, from companies who also can go for the blueish white for their toilets...

    I hope that some of you will be able to answer one of our questions. Many thanks for reading this long question and have a great day!

  6. #6
    DIY Member Perfectionist's Avatar
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    Lightbulb Some answers!

    Hi,

    I got some answers to my above questions, so if you share my obsession for uniformity, here you go!

    1) AS fireclay china is indeed whiter than AS vitreous china (no answer for the other brands)

    2) Neptune acrylic is whiter than AS vitreous china (no answer for other brands)

    3) No idea yet ;-)

    4) See no. 1

    Conclusion : the Toto white to pick besides a Neptune acrylic bath is "cotton white".

    Cheers!

  7. #7
    DIY Senior Member Mike50's Avatar
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    Default

    If you truly are into uniformity then you should buy a suite by Toto or Kohler.
    Terry is good with matching these whites from experience.

    It's your subjective interpretation as well...

    IF the little details are going to bother you...get-a-suite....



    Im really happy with my Kohler memoirs suite. Towel bar-hook-shelf all match to a "T".

    If I could do it over I would have bought Toto....
    better quality imo.

    If you have money to burn then get a suite designed by Philip Starck. He's the best---today anyway.

    Mike
    Last edited by Mike50; 03-13-2007 at 03:41 PM.

  8. #8
    Homeowner geniescience's Avatar
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    Default acrylic tubs - all whites the same

    the acrylic for tubs comes from a very small number of suppliers, and is the same product used in every mold. AFAIK.

    david

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    DIY Member Perfectionist's Avatar
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    Default A suite is indeed a solution

    Thanks Mike, you're totally right!

    Plus we share the same taste: we love Kohler's Memoir suite (actually crazy about its big lavatory, oh my) and Philip Stark's Happy D suite. Absolutely lovely.

    Unfortunately, we can't afford any such suite. The Toto toilet will actually be a splurge for us. :-)

    Yep, despite the fact that we love beautiful things (who doesn't ;-) we decided to filter the endless choices by asking ourselves tons of down-to-earth questions: do we sit on the tub, do we have the space, do we use the tub more than the shower, etc.

    Once the requirements were set, it was BUDGET time. :-)

    Stay within 10% of the value of the home, not go too high quality or else when we'll have to sell it will be too different from the rest of the neibourhood, try to pay it quickly, put money aside for our old days, etc.

    That's why we'll do our remodel in two steps:

    1. Emergencies now (the alcove wall is crumbling, the Crane suite is 20 year-old, pink and chipped, the sink is rusting, the toilet bowl is pink and its tank is white)
    2. Beautifying later (vanity, more lights, new floor tiles)

    Then, only when an item would meet both things (e.g. ergonomy and $), we could pick a DESIGN.

    This is not that interesting, but I'll list below how we picked things in case other people have similar needs.

    BATH

    We couldn't buy something at a big box store (for instance a Crane Peanut) since our tub is stuck into a 5' by 33'' alcove while we're both tall. We we're so relieved that Neptune's Daphnee does fit us.

    The Maax Vichy is also very spacious.

    So is American Standard Serin, but if one has long legs, he or she won't be able to elongate them (please excuse my English: not my language)

    Actually, we don't really like the Daphnee's style. It's pretty, but we prefer simpler lines. So we will buy it without its skirt.

    But it is amazingly comfortable. If you sit, there is enough space on the sides for the arms (not the case in the Vichy). If you go into the water, the armrests are comfortable (while the Serin has none and the Vichy felt bad on our elbows).

    The skirtless Daphnee is a lot cheaper than a Kohler bath. :-) About CAD 300.

    TOILET

    1) For ecological reasons, we wanted to save water, even if we don't pay for it up here (volume-wise).
    2) We wanted a good flush despite its 6 L
    3) We hoped for beauty since what we see when we enter the bathroom is the bath-shower alcove (in front of the door)... actually *half of it* since the toilet is in front of it! In other words, we see the side of the toilet.

    So Toto seems to be it. :-)

    SINK

    We found the handsome Kohler Cimarron at around $100. Its white will go fine with the Toto toilet and Neptune tub. Hurrey!

    Mike, thanks for having taken the time to provide your suggestions: it's fun to notice that we share the same eclectic tastes, Memoirs being very classic and Starck so modern. :-)
    Last edited by Perfectionist; 03-14-2007 at 03:45 AM. Reason: Budget: not go to high for the value of the home, and stay within ours

  10. #10
    DIY Member Perfectionist's Avatar
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    Default Neptune suite

    Oh, and about Neptune suites:

    - Beautiful
    - But the whites of acrylic bath and blueish toilet don't match much.

    But then again, it will almost always be the case with blueish china since acrylic is usually the same from a company to another one, as geniescience thankfully noted.

    The Neptune toilet color is not the reason why we haven't picked it, while we picked a Neptune bath:

    - Neptune toilets are not listed in the MaP research and I haven't seen any mention about their functionality, except on their own Web site ;-)
    - They are beautiful, but too monumental viewed from the side, hiding half of a bathtub, and in a small bathroom on top of it all. Of course, this is a matter of taste.
    - Pricey too
    - For suite lovers: the Neptune Daphnee bathtub is not part of a Neptune suite
    Last edited by Perfectionist; 03-14-2007 at 03:37 AM.

  11. #11
    Moderator & Master Plumber hj's Avatar
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    Default white

    Besides the actual color, the material it is covering, the planes of the surfaces affect your perception of the color. A vertical surface will appear to be a different shade than a horizontal one, and both will differ from a curved edge, and whether the surface is in shadow or bright light is also a factor. You can go crazy trying to match the fixtures' colors and then find out when you actually install them that they still differ, and also notice, that since they are separated it makes little difference actually.

  12. #12
    DIY Senior Member Mike50's Avatar
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    Default

    Other than stating the obvious-- In graphic arts contrast and lighting rule are critical in a case like this with whites.

    Both of those factors can be controlled by your personal choices.

    A mottled/faux wall finish along with incandescent light *may* conceal.
    White wall highlights might solve the issue entirely.
    You have to try out different finishes. You can always repaint..

    Perfectionist--Draw attention to a dramatic wall finish. A 2 tone Metallic-ragging or bagging for example. No one will ever notice any differences that may exist.

    If you need suggestions just let me know..

    Mike

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    DIY Member Perfectionist's Avatar
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    Default

    hj, mike50, you're right about the plane, the lighting, etc.

    Thanks guys, I'm spoiled with all your advices!

    FiancÚ mentioned tiles with non-uniform color, and I was thinking of a cream color on the walls so that we don't have to match yet another white. Plus in a bathroom without a window, some yellow would be good.

    We'll be looking at texturized stuff, thanks again!

  14. #14
    DIY Senior Member Mike50's Avatar
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    Default

    Good idea mate. Many of the new texture Venetian Plaster/Lusterstone/Desire
    products have cautions about using them in bathrooms. careful..
    Try to get some pro products from "Faux Effects" and stay away from Big Box products. You will get a much better & professional result.

    Starting with a mildew inhibiting-bathroom/kitchen version of Kilz or Zinsser primer is a good idea as well.

    Mike

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    Homeowner geniescience's Avatar
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    Default off-white tiles

    1. A large tile that is textured to look like a large whitish stone, bush-hammered and / or striated.
    2. An accent strip in mosaic tiles. Triangles and Losanges cut at 120 degrees and 60 degrees.
    3. Edges, where tile ends and plaster starts, closed with a metal strip, of a medium color that picks up the hints of stronger colours (non-white and non-yellow) in the two tiles.

    David

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