Whilst perhaps not as fickle as the fashion industry, the interior world’s trends are in constant flux. Trends might stick around in the interior industry for slightly longer than in fashion, however, with many styles morphing and adapting throughout the course of a few years whilst still remaining current.
There is one standout look which is better described as an interior phenomenon rather than a trend because of its overwhelming presence in the home decor industry over the last ten years. We’re talking about gray interior design. Gone are the days when the key neutral was magnolia: gray now reigns supreme as the base of choice.
One of the most versatile shades on the palette, gray interiors are now cemented as chic staples in any discerning home. Gray color isn’t a contradiction in terms, either. It’s more than a mix of black and white, as the specific hue is a key element across numerous styles and looks. From gray wall paint to furniture and accessories, it’s an on-trend color for any room.
The versatility of the shade means that each space can take on a unique feel depending on what it’s paired with - a gray bedroom paired with blue bedding creates a sense of calm, whilst a boldly colored living room can be grounded with a gray sofa. Here’s a little more interior inspiration.
Stay Subtle or Be Bold
The perfect base for the vast majority of colors, gray interiors can form the foundation of countless interior looks and allow you to be as subtle or as bold as you dare. Its popularity as a neutral is linked with the rise of another huge interior trend: Scandi style. These influences have seen a muted palette of gray, white and subtle pastel accents infiltrate every space from dining rooms and bedrooms to bathrooms.
Grays as neutrals also lend themselves to bolder shades just as much as softer hues. They’re the perfect grounding contrast to a host of vibrant colors from burnt orange to mustard yellow, teal and emerald green. Dark interiors are also having their moment with inky navy and wine shades seen in sophisticated interiors across the globe, both of which work well with gray.
Gray interiors work particularly well layered with texture to really bring neutrals to life. Natural woods and stoneware are particularly discerning against gray. From industrial concrete to opulent marble, stoneware in the home can complement a range of interior styles. It can be applied on a large scale through flooring and tiles, or through accents such as planters or tableware.
The versatility of both gray and wood makes them perfect partners, with warm woods such as walnut and mahogany warming the often cool hue, or paler varieties such as beech giving a crisp feel. For the winter months, look for sheepskins, faux fur throws and chunky knits in a selection of complementing shades to infuse a sense of warmth.
Warm It Up or Cool It Down
Gray offers subtle notes of other shades, giving each gray its own unique feel. These notes transform each shade, so consider them before opting for a gray interior scheme. Cool grays have hints of blues or greens within them, making them ideal accompaniments to pale wood or darker accent colors. Purple tones are also seen within many grays such as cool stone and heather.
You can find both cool and warm purple grays, fabulous for both those looking for crisp, clean looks or cozier settings. For those craving warmth, taupes offer more gray varieties whilst the combination color greige is also a timeless option for those who want the softness of beige mixed with the contemporary edge of gray.