Not so long ago, beige was the neutral of choice. Today, gray is the “go to” color for fashion, cars, industrial design (like stainless steel appliances), and of course, interiors! This subtle hue has undergone a radical makeover in recent years, eschewing its former dreary and washed-out image to assume an aura of elegance that’s both soothing and chic.
Going gray–whether slate, steel, smoke, silver, stone, the list goes on—is anything but bland. This versatile color option works in just about any setting, whether traditional spaces with dark wood tones or ultra-modern environments with steel and glass accents. Gray can make a space feel warm and cozy or sleek and cool; either way it’s a great choice for a sophisticated, contemporary look. There’s nothing to fear about “going gray” if you keep these tips in mind:
- Gray “plays nicely” with white or black accents, helping to make an elegant statement without clamoring for attention—think quiet class.
- The ultimate neutral, gray looks good with almost any other color—providing depth to subtle hues and making bold tones pop. Use it as a neutral to let a bright color shine or allow shades of gray to take the lead for a calming retreat.
- Gray is a great understated complement in a room where you want to use shades of pink, aqua, peach, lavender and navy. Likewise, gray pairs well with bright hues like yellow green, fuchsia or turquoise or even Pantone’s 2014 color of the year, radiant orchid!
- Warm grays are the best option if you have a lot of polished wood or finishes and accessories with gold or brown tones. Cooler shades of gray may fade away or appear flat next to these tones.
- A deep, saturated gray is a great choice for an accent color, even when used in conjunction with a lighter gray. Just treat dark grays as you would black or navy blue and be careful not to overdo it.
- The undertones that make the various shades of gray interesting can also shift the overall color tone when interacting with your space, and particularly the lighting, so be sure to view as large a sample as possible in the space or at least an area with similar lighting conditions.
Want to hear more about going gray? Give us a call today!
Derek Perini, IIDA is a senior designer who has been with RLPS Interiors for 18 years. His favorite color is yellow–so stay tuned for a future blog!
Not too bland, not too bold, but just the right amount of color will enliven spaces without overwhelming the senses. Our designers can help you master the fundamentals of color theory including the effects of color in different spaces, color layering techniques, the impacts of light and shadow on color and using color as an economical means to define spaces, inspire a theme, calm or excite, support way-finding and enhance safety.