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Difference Between Ivory and Ecru

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Ivory and ecru can be confusing to some because they are both light colors. This confusion is usually because people do not know the difference between the two colors.

The main difference between Ivory and Ecru is that Ivory is creamy white while ecru is more of a light grayish brown with a hint of yellow. The easiest way to remember the difference is that ivory is closer to white, while ecru is closer to brown.

In this blog post, we will explain this difference even further and provide some tips on how to remember the difference between ivory and ecru.

What Is Ivory?

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Ivory is a light beige color with yellow undertones. The word "ivory" comes from the Latin word for elephant tusks, which were often used to make carvings and other objects. Ivory is often used to describe pure, innocent, or perfect things, such as "the ivory tower" or "an ivory dress."

It can also be used to describe something that is delicate or fragile, such as "ivory skin." Ivory has been popular in home decor for many years and is often used in paint colors and fabrics.

Ivory is also a popular color for wedding dresses, as it symbolizes purity and grace. It is a classic color that can be combined with almost any other color to create a beautiful and timeless look.

Whether you're looking for a color to describe innocence or beauty, Ivory is a perfect choice.

What Is Ecru?


According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, the ecru color is "a light grayish-yellow or brown." It is often used in fabric and design when a neutral color is desired. The word "ecru" comes from the French word for "raw" or "unbleached," which refers to the natural color of unprocessed linen or silk fibers.

Because of its neutrality, ecru can be combined with other colors to create a wide range of looks. For example, it can be paired with brighter hues to create a contrast, or combined with other earth tones for a more harmonious effect.

It is often used in clothing and home decor. It is a popular choice for upholstery and curtains. Ecru is also a popular color for wedding dresses. It is a versatile color that can be used in a variety of settings.

Whether you are looking for a versatile neutral or a pop of color, ecru is a great option.

Key Differences Between Ivory And Ecru

Differences in word origins

The word ivory has its origins in the Latin word for "elephant tusks." The word ecru, on the other hand, comes from the French word for "unbleached." Both words are used to describe a light color, but ivory is typically associated with the shade of an elephant's tusks, while ecru is associated with the unbleached color of linen.

Interestingly, both colors have been used for centuries in fine art and decorative applications. Many of the world's most famous paintings - including the Mona Lisa and the Sistine Chapel frescoes - contain ivory pigment.

Differences in color

Ivory tends to be more of a pure white color, while Ecru has a more yellowish tint. The two colors are often used interchangeably in home decorating, but there are some subtle differences that can be important to consider when making design choices.

For example, if you're trying to create a warm and inviting space, Ecru may be the better choice since it has a slight hint of yellow. If you're going for a more modern look, however, Ivory may be the way to go.

Differences in usage

While both colors can be used for a variety of applications, there are some key differences in how they're typically used. Ivory is often used in wedding gowns and other formal wear, while Ecru is more commonly seen in home decorating.

So, when you're trying to decide between ivory and ecru, it's important to consider the overall look you're going for and the specific use of the color.

However, both colors are often used interchangeably in fashion and design. Ultimately, the choice of which color to use is up to the individual.

Comparison Chart: Ivory Vs Ecru

ColorOff-WhiteLight Grayish-Yellow
Primary UsageWedding DressHome Decor


Which is darker, ecru or ivory?

Ecru and ivory are both light colors, but ecru is slightly darker than ivory. Because of its lightness, ivory can sometimes look washed out next to other colors. Ecru, on the other hand, provides a nice contrast to darker colors. So if you're looking for a light color that will still make an impact, ecru is the way to go.

What color is closest to ecru?

There isn't a definitive answer to this question, as ecru can be a range of different colors depending on the source. However, if we consider ecru to be a light brown color, then the closest color on the spectrum would be beige.

Both ecru and beige are neutral colors that can work well with a variety of other colors. If you're looking for a color that is similar to ecru, but perhaps a little lighter or brighter, then you might want to try cream or ivory

What color is closest to ivory?

While some may say that white is the closest color to ivory, others may say that cream is more accurate. Ultimately, it is up to the individual to decide what color they believe is closest to ivory.

However, if we looked at the colors side by side, we would see that they are both very similar. Both white and cream are pale colors with a warm undertone. They also have a similar level of brightness, making them both perfect candidates for the title of "closest color to ivory."


While ivory and ecru are both light colors, there are some key differences between them. These include the origins of the words, the tones of the colors, and the typical usage. Knowing the difference between ivory and ecru can be helpful when choosing paint colors or fabrics.


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About the Author: Nicolas Seignette

Nicolas Seignette, who holds a scientific baccalaureate, began his studies in mathematics and computer science applied to human and social sciences (MIASHS). He then continued his university studies with a DEUST WMI (Webmaster and Internet professions) at the University of Limoges before finishing his course with a professional license specialized in the IT professions. On 10Differences, he is in charge of the research and the writing of the articles concerning technology, sciences and mathematics.
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