Painting Creme Or White? Parchment Or Wisteria? Decisions….

Pam writes, asking about various Caromal Colours paint products-

I need some color advice…getting ready to paint a large chest of drawers and dresser with mirror. I want to go very light and planned on the parchment (Textured Basecoat color Parchment) with the coffee glaze (Wall Glaze color Coffee) but I’m second guessing myself and wonder if I should go with wisteria (Textured Basecoat color Wisteria)  and what would the tea glaze (Wall Glaze color Tea)  look like.

Because monitors vary, I can’t decide if I should go parchment or wisteria with the coffee or tea glaze. Again, I want the pieces to look light and fresh but not stark and cold. The hardware will likely be matte black or oil rubbed bronze.

Any guidance? I’ve carefully reviewed about every photo on your and the Caromal Colors website but just can’t make up my mind! They are so similar but whites can be tricky.

Here is the Parchment and Wisteria in the jar , Wisteria is on the left –

Brushed out on a trim piece, the Parchment is on the left and the Wisteria on the right –

The top left  smaller square is Parchment with Toner brushed on and wiped off with damp rag.  The top right square is Wisteria with Toner brushed on and wiped off with damp rag –

Now  pulling out the Wall Glazes –  Tea Stain and Coffee Stain.   These glazes are an option over the light colors like Parchment and Wisteria, offering a little less ‘antiquing’ in the final finish.

I taped the Parchment side into 2 halves,  and did the same thing on the Wisteria side.  On each I brushed on half with Tea Stain and the other with Coffee Stain.  The glaze doesn’t have to be brushed on this heavy, I just had a hard time trying to brush it on and stay in between the narrow tape lines –

The glazes are wiped off easily with a dry rag.

  • The left 3 samples are Wisteria, the WHITER of the two colors
  • The right 3 samples are Parchment, the CREME of the two colors

Let’s get closer up-

  • All three are over Caromal Colours Wisteria Texture Basecoat
  • The first is Toner brushed on and wiped off with damp rag (sample is dry)
  • The second is Coffee Stain brushed on and wiped off with dry rag (sample is wet)
  • tape line is Wisteria basecoat
  • the third is Tea Stain brushed on and wiped off with  dry rag (sample is wet)

Closer up-

  • All three are over Caromal Colours Parchment Texture Basecoat
  • The first is Tea Stain brushed on and wiped off with  dry rag (sample is wet)
  • The second is Coffee Stain brushed on and wiped off with dry rag (sample is wet)
  • tape line is Parchment basecoat
  • the third is Toner brushed on and wiped off with damp rag (sample is dry)

I think you can see from these photos that regardless of which basecoat you choose, your refinished furniture will look light and fresh.  I hope this post helps you  decide!

As a last resort, don’t forget you can always order these samples – I will custom create the color/s you are interested in on the three inch trim squares seen above.  For more information check out this post on ordering color finish samples.


Head to my store below (click icon) and be sure to use my code, PattyH in the coupon code area.   It will save you $2 off shipping,  or if you’re order is $75 or more use my PattyH5 for $5 off shipping.




8 responses to “Painting Creme Or White? Parchment Or Wisteria? Decisions….

  1. Hi Patti! I heard of you, and Caromal Colours, through The Inspired Room. I am so excited about using this product all over my home! This post was VERY helpful, because I too was having a hard time deciding between Parchment & Wisteria for my kitchen cabinets. If I don’t want to use glaze, can I just sand them down so that some of the original (brown) wood shows through?

    I have another question about my family room, which has built-in bookcases and cabinets flanking the fireplace, and judges paneling up to the chair rail in the rest of the room. In other words, there’s a ton of wood — which I NEVER liked during the 11 years I’ve lived in this house. (Actually, it’s the exact same wood finish as the kitchen, and all the cabinets in the house — yuck!) Anyway, I really want to lighten up the room, a la Pottery Barn. I’m not sure if I should do ALL the wood light (like the future kitchen), or do some kind of barnwood finish. Maybe do the paneling white, and barnwood for the mantel & bookshelves?

    Thanks for all you do; it sounds like a fun job!

    P.S. My 49yo eyes almost can’t read the print size in the reply box, so I hope I don’t have any typos. 🙂

    • Hi Nicki,

      I love the Inspired Room, what a great blogsite!

      Okey, so kitchen cabs in parchment or wisteria – can you nix the glaze or toner and just sand back to your base cab (brown)? Well, you can sand back to reveal your brown cabinet showing through the lighter paint, BUT……. it will be a very ‘painted’ surface look without the toner or glaze…. The Wisteria is like marshmallow white, and the Parchment is very creme – both colors look just as described – like ‘white’ or ‘creme’ …. I’m not a big fan of any of the colors left as is – except maybe the Chocolate or Peppercorn…. the toner or glaze warms up the lighter colors and gives a more finished look than just sanding back to brown…

      lololol, you sound like my mom talking about our old house (things about it she never liked 🙂 ) Do you have any pictures of your family room? What ARE your cabinets and bookcases, oak? I’d be inclined to do the family room different than the kitchen – at least the focal point (fireplace/cases) what else is going on in the family room ? Color wise? Did you see the post I did on the Entertainment Center that was distressed? Yummy!

      If anything, it shows how ‘color’ other than neutral , can add to your space…. The barnworn finishes are awesome – but remember, that is a layering process, so you are looking at layer 1 COLOR 1, layer 2 Chipping Creme, layer 3 COLOR 2, layer 4 Toner……. cost wise isn’t huge, but labor wise you are looking at more work – I’d not do a whole room in that process, but would definitely consider it for fireplace trim, or surrounding cabinets……

  2. You’re awesome! You helped me make up my mind with confidence! I’m ordering now and using your code. Thanks for all your efforts and a very thorough visual aid!

  3. Thank you so much for posting this! I was desperate to find an entire kitchen done in both and the putty but couldn’t really find anything but parchment and black. I love both but still wasn’t sold. I would still love to see a kitchen in all three colors but I ultimately decided to go with Wisteria b/c my appliances are black and my granite is a black/tan/gray mix with tan tile floors. I thought that might flow a little better. I have more of a modern taste and the glass mosaic backsplash will go better with the Wisteria I think… I still wish I could see the Putty on something larger. I will definately send pics when I am finished. I wish everyone would so that we could all compare room to room a little easier. Seriously your site is what made me actually buy today. I love that you include so much detail. I made the mistake of painting my cabinets white with a paint and primer in one and that didn’t work out so I am currently using citristrip gel to remove all of that paint! I have NEVER made such a huge mistake. There was no way my maple was going back to original and the thought of using a toothpick to remove every single speck of paint was driving me nuts. I’m currently avoiding the kitchen. When I get my order in I will revisit and see what’s what. For now it’s Hello Subway! My poor husband. hahaha… Thanks again!

    • I’d love to see that Putty color in a completed kitchen as well – I did my masterbath in the Cobblestone and afterward realized that the Putty (with a little more toner) would have been an even nicer match to my rugs etc. After I finish the lower level bathroom in black (its already started) I think I might do our guest bathroom in the putty – just because I want to see it, and be able to show it, on a completed cabinet. To me its very much a netural color, but not nearly as dark as the chocolate/black or as light as the parchement/wisteria.

      Sorry to hear about your paint/primer mess, Why are you removing it before using the Wisteria?

  4. Hello! I have a question regarding Wisteria and Parchment. I’ve read almost every single blog/post and narrowed it down to these two colors. I’m attempting to revive the living room fireplace mantel/entertainment nook — currently a homebuilder white. Our floor is slate tile — multicolor, and then our couch is contemporary and off white. I’d like to keep the look more contemporary and modern. I’m wondering if the Wisteria is a cleaner crisp look, vs. the parchment. I’m going for a contemporary, modern style and want this piece to blend into the room and also be a nice focal point. Any suggestions or ideas?

  5. Hi Danielle,

    By chance can you email photos? If so it would be see what you’re working with – you can e them to my email.

    The Wisteria is crisper than the parchment – the Parchment is like cream/offwhite and the Wisteria is like a white crayon…. are you looking to distress it, or just leave it painted? I guess I’m confused, if its white already? Is it beat up?

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