All throughout the grey trend (which is now on the way out) I heard comments like this from homeowners as well as designers alike “I would NEVER decorate with grey, it’s way too cold”.
Keep in mind, the person who makes this statement usually has only one colour in their head when they hear the word grey.
Battleship grey blue.
Battleships are usually a dark blue grey, I assume because they blend in with the ocean.
And when Terreeia and I were in Charleston last fall during one of our Specify Colour with Confidence workshops, we took a tour of the harbour and the tour boat took us right beside the Patriots Point Maritime Museum which happens to be an aircraft carrier similar to the one in Top Gun.
If you’re my age, you’ll remember that movie from the 80’s, AND there’s a sequel coming up, you can read about it here.
I was able to take some fun photos of it because we got really close on the tour boat.
If you are familiar wth my System for Specifying Colour (below) you’ll already know that grey has three undertones, green, blue and violet.
Once you start comparing any green or violet grey to an actual blue grey, well green grey (which is much more popular than violet grey) starts looking almost beige.
And that’s the reason most people call colours that range anywhere from taupes to green greys; GREIGE.
However, greige in my system is pale and light. More on that here.
To learn about which white is right for your house, download my White is Complicated eBook here.
And whenever I would show a client a colour in the realm of a green grey or taupe and they wrinkled up their nose and said “That looks beige”, that’s when I immediately knew that they were a blue person. Grey didn’t look grey to them unless their walls were blue.
While some people would think blue greys are too cold, a blue person probably wouldn’t feel that way.
And, mostly we don’t specify straight blue greys (like this battleship) anyway, usually it’s more of a blue-green (like this room below) because it’s simply warmer.
via Jordan Lodoen
And if your walls are a blue grey, it looks so pretty when you warm it up with colour like these kelly green sofas (below):
This is the only room I could find that was painted a straight blue grey without any green in it. You can see that it feels somewhat cold without a balance of cold and warm colour. We could add many different accent colours here. For example, a yellow rug, yellow throw pillows and some yellow accessories would bring this room to life. Or, if colour is not your think, adding more of the colours in the basket would work too, see this post I wrote about that.
Link bait site image (original image not found)
Photos by Maria Killam
This mid-tone, dark grey is technically on it’s way out so this post would probably have been more timely had I written it seven years ago, but I was nowhere near a battleship back then! Now that I am travelling all around the country, I’ve seen a lot of things I’ve never seen before and I’m truly grateful.
However, before you get depressed that your house is painted a mid-tone shade of grey, just because the planet is painting the inside and outside of their house art gallery white, right now, doesn’t mean that it’s right for EVERYONE.
Grey needs colour to bring it to life so before you run out and paint your house white, try adding some colour like the last photo I just talked about.
Colour is happy.
And Colour is way more timeless than the current trendy neutral anyway.
Over to you my lovelies, did you think grey was cold until you learned about the different shades of grey?
Here’s Terreeia (pronounced Maria with a T) on the tour boat.
Happy Memorial Day Weekend to all my American followers! We love and appreciate you!
My Fall workshop dates are up! We will be in Vancouver, Chicago, Boston, Denver and Orlando.