The Fifty Shades of Grey pun must have been used a million times before in posts about interiors, but it really does describe my hunt for the perfect shade for my living room wall. And my stair wall.. oh and my bedroom… because walls painted pale grey really are the thing of the moment but for very good reason.
My last few houses have been painted nearly 100% pure, brilliant white. I love white, it’s so fresh and clean – and easy to paint over when you get finger marks on the wall. I think I caved in a little bit in my Wirral kitchen and had Almond White, just to soften it up a bit, but I wanted a slight change this time and grey is just so calming, soft and light-reflecting that it really is a great choice.
Our new house is only a few years old so the paintwork was generally pretty good, with no nasty wall coverings to deal with like the anaglypta that covered the walls of the our old one. That stuff is a killer to get off, isn’t it? Plus once you’ve got it off, you’re usually left with a re-plastering job to cover the cracks hidden by years of papering over paper. Well that’s what happened in our old house anyway.
Here, we have nice new, straight walls which are easy to decorate and low-maintenance, which is what I’m all about at the moment.
The new lounge was painted all white with one sand-coloured accent wall, a shade which wasn’t totally offensive but just not my cup of tea. Once I decided I wanted to paint it grey the next step was finding which one, and as there are so many to choose from it was no quick decision.
Luckily, many homes magazines give you the shade of the walls featured so that was a starting point. Also, a post on my Facebook page came up with lots of suggestions from friends who had had a similar search. Popular ones to try out were Dulux Chic Shadow, Fallow and Ball Blackened, and Little Greene Inox and Urbane Grey. There are, of course, a million shades in between as you can have your own colour mixed by Dulux, for example, so you could really spend an age deciding how light or dark you want to go.
I took a slightly rash approach and went out for some sample pots and sloshed them straight onto the wall above the fireplace, so I could see how they looked in different lights throughout the day. This was met with a bit of shock by my mum, who advised the more sensible option of painting onto paper and sticking that to the wall, but you know, by then it was too late and so I lived with my patchwork wall for a few weeks.
The kids loved it, and it took some persuading them that we weren’t all going to paint the walls and no, they weren’t going to pink or bright blue.
In the end I went for a shade by Litte Greene called Inox for the lounge and the same for the stairs.
In my bedroom I was going to go for a blush pink – after falling in love with the bedroom makeover done by Lori at Wild and Grizzly. I absolutely love her room and what she did with it, but I think seeing as Flo is adamant her room will be pink, one pink room may be enough for me!
It’s really difficult to show the exact shade in a photograph but the grey I went for in my bedroom is very pale, it’s called Blackened from Farrow and Ball. It sounds strange to say but it really warms up the room a bit and softens it from pure white.
I just need to decide on the curtains for my room now, as the pale grey doesn’t really go with the dark brown ones I inherited with the house. Now choosing curtains is a whole new ball game, I could write a post on just that but it wouldn’t be very long, as I am just so indecisive! I love print in other people’s homes but have the fear when I look at it for my own.
I’ll keep you updated on the curtains then.
Have you used grey in your home? I’d be interested to know which shades you went for.