All shades of grey

From a scientific (or almost) point of view, what characterises grey is its absence of colour, its neutrality... In short, grey is a non-colour.  So why is it so popular? This definition of grey is rather narrow i.e. somewhere between black and white, having no colour and completely desaturated. Colour professionals would give you a different definition; they would present a much broader and nuanced palette with differing shades and colour intensity such as mouse grey, pearl grey, turtledove grey (oh yes), charcoal, lead, steel, taupe (the famous taupe) and biscuit (beige grey)... 

 

Greys can be used in surprising ways: to structure your decor (lines and volume), as a neutral base to which you can add touches of colour and, of course, to create a stylish, confident and understated effect. Gone is grey's gloomy and somewhat drab reputation associated with bad weather and depressing thoughts... grey is stylish - in fact, it's very stylish!

A light grey living room, simple felt furnishings, and soft round shapes create a perfect contemporary design. Combine touches of bright colours and graphic patterns for a chic sophisticated look. Pairing light grey with pale-coloured wood creates a Scandinavian style.

Choose grey furniture. In small spaces, grey furniture adds the necessary sobriety to storage spaces allowing you to experiment with colour in different areas. Play around with different shades of grey to add texture and structure spaces.

Combine touches of bright colours and graphic patterns for a chic sophisticated look. 

On walls and floors, all shades of grey are permitted: from pearl grey to slate. Use light greys to create softness and light and use denser greys to create structure.

Used in design, graphics and architecture, the huge palette of greys is ubiquitous in contemporary design.

On an untreated floor, grey paint evokes the creative atmosphere of an artist's studio. Use very light grey in poorly illuminated spaces (but remember it's hard to keep clean) while in a bright space, go for light shades for optimal luminosity or darker greys if you want to create an industrial vibe. 

 

Paint an entire wall in light grey or mouse grey (or anywhere in between) but use dark grey in moderation unless you have a massive space bathed in light or want the room to double up as a darkroom. Dark grey applied to a smooth half-wall creates contrast. When used as a border line or on woodwork it modernises a classic decor. 

 

Generally-speaking, if you feel the need for colour nothing is more elegant than a grey background.

Decorating and furnishing a highly stylised, very classic or wood panelled interior can be extremely challenging; however, the broad spectrum of shades between black and white can come to your creative rescue. A large heather grey rug will add a touch of simplicity and extreme sophistication while a large comfortable grey sofa will create a relaxing focal point to a room. A large charcoal table can be used to structure a space. And a simple coffee table will create a sense of flow.

The very broad palette of greys is timeless, understated, elegant, and very easy to work with. Take a few moments to identify your decor challenges and we're sure you'll find that grey, in all its shades, will do the job.

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