Join our newsletter Name: Your Email Address Contact me with news and offers from other Future brands Thank you for signing up to Realhomes. There are so many shades of gray, from pale neutrals to dark and intense, it can create a calming, cocooning or even dramatic space. And, including a gray accent wall in your home is a good chance to think outside the box when it comes to decorate with this ever-trending color.
Justyna Korczynska, Color Consultant at Crown (opens in new tab) explains how a deep gray is such a versatile accent, 'Darker tones of charcoal can be used to add drama anywhere in the home, from a living room to a bedroom or even a small hallway - with clever lighting and mirrors you can create a look that is both strong and atmospheric. Paint effects...you may shudder at the thought of Nineties throwback techniques like rag rolling and sponging, but they're back! Complement the walls with a fresh white for a simple Scandi inspired finish, or create a little drama by pairing it with warm blue or olive green paint.
For frames, the contrast against the light of day is crisp and fresh, but at night, helps large windows feel cozy and contained. The soft, dove gray paneled wall creates a chic and tranquil atmosphere for the bedroom, but accents of darker shades for woodwork and furniture adds a smart, sophisticated edge. Team this with polished chrome accents and fresh white sheets to bring a timeless touch of boutique hotel chic to space. As Arianna Cesa, Associate Manager of Color Marketing and Development at Benjamin Moore (opens in new tab)explains,'consider a combination of light and dark gray paints for a slick, monochromatic look that doesn’t overwhelm the room. Much like a forest canopy, the shadowy tone is the perfect backdrop for lush, deep green plants, making tropical varieties perfect partners too, go for large leafed floor standing palms for a statement option and add trailing plants to high shelves or hanging planters for texture and interest. Create an instantly cozy corner by painting either a nook, alcove or if there aren't any natural architectural breaks, section off one end of the room in a deep shade of gray.
A warm white and nearly but not quite black softens the monochrome effect, as Ruth Mottershead, Creative Director Little Greene (opens in new tab) explains, ‘When selecting gray for a space, contrast shades such as dark ‘Scree’ with a warm off-white such as ‘Slaked Lime.’ When using gray, you can incorporate bolder colors into your scheme such as ‘Carmine,’ ‘Trumpet’ or ‘Orange Aurora’ on baseboards, woodwork or dado rails for a color highlight. Painting an in-built bookcase makes a statement out of the woodwork but the soft tone means it won't be overbearing in the room. As Paula Taylor at Graham & Brown (opens in new tab) explains, 'For a cozy space we recommend a greige shade. This timeless duo will never go out of style, it's such a winning combo Pantone (opens in new tab)chose a zingy yellow Illuminating and Ultimate Gray as their color of the year for 2021. Such an intense shade is the perfect way to showcase brave shots of color, try bold contrasts such as chartreuse and yellow, fuchsia and hot pinks like this velvet Saturday sofa from Sofa.com (opens in new tab), rich orange or teal to create a sensational pop against this intense gray. Layer the space with tactile accents such as chunky knit throws, tufted cushions, a velvet sofa or buttoned footstool for added oooh factor.
A smart stripe gray wallpaper, like Estelle at Sanberg (opens in new tab), is both timeless yet playful, and the graphite colourway makes it a classic. For a warmer finish, try linen and calico off whites with a hint of yellow, mid to deep gray-based greens, chalky denim blue and dusky terracotta. However, if it's a bolder contrast you want, pick jewel colors such as sapphire and teal, fuchsia pink, chartreuse and orange.
Justyna Korczynska, Colour Consultant at Crown (opens in new tab)also advises, 'dark greys are also a perfect strong background for small amounts of brighter color, like chartreuse or mint'. Arianna Cesa, Associate Manager of Color Marketing and Development at Benjamin Moore (opens in new tab) explains just how versatile it can be, 'there is an undeniable sophistication to gray. Paula Taylor at Graham & Brown (opens in new tab) echoes this idea, 'loved for its effortlessness and versatility, gray has firmly earned its spot on our walls, replacing the once-popular magnolias and beiges.
Mixed with lots of brass and crystal fittings, these colors will make a bathroom look super elegant and timeless.' However, if you do have a bright, sunny room, you can afford to go with cooler grays, these will work well particularly if you have strong midnight and inky blues on other walls.