Is Gray Here to Stay?

Initially you may have thought the title would be referring to the gray skies of winter.  Believe sometimes living in Ohio I begin to wonder if gray is here to stay, like forever!  Thankfully it’s not (although I did look it up and 67% of winter days are cloudy in Ohio)!

But instead I am referring to the gray color trend that has swept the nation and beyond in the use of home décor accents galore.

 

Recently my fellow DIY loving friend, Cindy, painted her kitchen cabinets gray.

Gray Cabinets in Kitchen

They look amazing, don’t they!?

After showing them to me, Cindy, confided that she harbored concerns about her choice of color. What if the gray trend dies out soon and if I go to sell a few years down the road the cabinets cause problems for potential buyers?

Her question got me thinking, is the gray surge just a trend or is it here to stay?

The gray trend started about 5 years ago. Initially it began on walls, then in accents of rugs and pillows, then on furniture in upholstered chairs and couches, and in the past couple of years cabinetry and backsplashes have showcased gray beautifully.

 

Most recently I have seen a trend of painting interior doors gray and I love the examples below!

 

gray interior door

At the Parade of Homes I went to this past Summer there was even a brick fireplace painted over in gray.  This was a new color choice then the normal white but it totally works!

Family Room Gray Painted Brick Fireplace

So is gray here to stay?  My opinion is that gray is here to stay. I think it will be a popular color in home fashion for at least the next 10 years but I wouldn’t be surprised if it lasts much longer.

Why?

Because gray is a neutral–it goes with everything and is a nice third option to the often employed neutrals of, off-white and beige.

 

It is a calming color.

 

gray color trend will stay

 via Pottery Barn

 

Jennifer Robin Interiors via Houzz

 

It is an excellent cool color to balance the warmth of wood tones and gold accents.

(Paint color-Benjamin Moore Stingray)

 

 Gray kitchen cabinets with gold hardware

via Martha Stewart

 

via Houzz

It’s a fabulous backdrop for pops of color or to create a weathered rustic ambience.

 

 

 

Gray is so versatile, too versatile to be going anywhere fast. Gray is here is to stay!

I’ve personally used gray in my home decorating in the boys room makeover with their wall color and DIY upholstered headboards.

Faux tufted Headboard

 

It’s also a main color in our media room (man cave) and I recently painted this frumpy brown couch gray!

couch before

And it is far from frumpy now!  You can check out the awesome results and couch painting tutorial,  Here!

What is your take on the gray trend?  Love it or hate it?  Think it’s here to last???

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Is Gray Color Trend Here Stay

 

65 thoughts on “Is Gray Here to Stay?

  1. kleinworthco

    I completely agree – I’m so loving it. I think it’s one of the better neutral choices because there are so many color & hue variations. Gray isn’t just cool – there are many tones toward the warmer side too. So you really can find THE PERFECT shade to match whatever mood you are after. If my hubs wasn’t so “pro-colors” I would have this entire house in varying shade of gray. It’s just so versatile.

  2. JJ

    Gray is the new beige. It was popular as an interior neutral in the 80s for walls and carpets, often paired with mauve and teal or sea foam green. Since “everything old is new again”, beige will be back…..probably at the exact moment that I finally get all the beige purged from my own interiors! I do love the new ways of using grays. I’ve always especially liked it for exteriors, and your example above is beautiful.

    1. Tamara Post author

      hmmm, Interesting about the 80’s, JJ. Must have been one of the better trends of the 80’s because there are plenty from that decade I don’t want to see again!:-) ex: big teased out bangs

  3. Decorating Delirium

    I think it is here to stay, at least for a while! I am planning my daughter’s big girl room makeover and I plan to use gray. It is finding the perfect shade choice that overwhelms me. There are so many options out there!

  4. Cheryl in Granite Bay

    I too was worried gray would be a trend but we made the bold choice and went with a stained warm medium gray for our cabinetry. It is an amazing neutral! Taupe, beige and gray with an accent of copper makes for a fabulous great room that should stand the test of time. I think grey is here to stay.

  5. C.K.

    I do love grey, but am slightly worried it will be overdone. I think greige is such a great blend and will have more staying power over the years. That said, I have a whole Pinterest board dedicated to shades of grey, so I’m fan 😉

    1. Garret

      Yes like every thing ,comes and goes ,so ,, Cabinets look great gray but they’ll be out of style soon so I paint them with natural colors ! THey are to expensive White ,creams ,woods tones! THen have fun with your Island that can always be painted and not costing that much money if you have plenty of money go for it in a couple years you can have them repainted or replaced I say keep it natural ,

  6. LD

    In my early 90’s house I painted the master bath gray. Loved it, but it was not in, so changed it to yellow. I have lived with beige my whole life, going to gray this year for the neutral in this house. The exterior is already a greige, came that way back in ’01. So looking forward to the change. The beige just looks old and dark to me now.

  7. Vickie

    My Grandmother’s kitchen in a house built in the 40’s had gray cabinets with glass knobs, LOVED it! Stone-granite, rocks, marble, slate, even the petrified stone I have around my fireplace, all have gray running through it. Gray in tree bark. Gray skies. Gray has been around forever and I think will be for the rest of forever. I am loving all the shades of it being used so much more and will be repainting my living room just as soon as I find the perfect shade myself!

  8. Jennie Toepfer

    Been a grey person for years and years! I doubt it is going anywhere anytime soon. Love all the different options in accessories now — paint, pillows, bedding, furniture, etc.

  9. Sandra

    I have never followed trends in decorating, I’ve always felt that my home should reflect what makes me happy. Of course that has changed many times over the 20yrs we’ve been in our current home. I personally prefer a gray/beige to a true gray because I live in Vancouver, Canada which is already gray enough! Whatever makes you happy!

  10. vikki

    21 years ago I painted my whole house a light grey and put in grey carpeting. I must have been before my time. But back then the grey was paired with Mauve. (bletch) I still love grey and helped my DIL paint their kitchen cabinets grey this summer. I still have a grey kitchen and guest bathroom and am thinking of painting the exterior of our home grey.

    1. Tamara Post author

      Hi Cheri! Thanks for your question! If you look under the photo of the home it has a blue link that says Houzz. If you click on it, it will take you to where the builder answers questions about the home. He says it is “Cedar Siding – Cabot Solid Stain – Pewter Grey”. Hope this helps!

  11. Ldg

    I am not a fan of gray at all. I think it is depressing like all of the cloudy days in Ohio. I do not decorate with it in my home and I do not like to wear it either.

  12. N

    I am also not a fan of gray. I cannot wait for this trend to end. I find nothing cozy or warm in a grey interior. In my mind, grey is a color used in commercial and government buildings. I know it can be lovely but it symbolizes coldness and bleakness to me.

  13. Lisa

    I am just entering the world of gray myself! I was never a fan, it looked gloomy and depressing to me. With that said, I have just finished my bedroom with Benjamin Moore color Quiet Moments 1563 and painted my oak looking trim Valspar Cotton Linen and IN LOVE!!!!! My furniture is a light brown which reminds me of sand and I could never find a happy wall color. Gray sky(WALLS) and sand(FURNITURE) makes me think of my HAPPY place, the lake! Wish me luck 🙂

  14. l

    I did Gray back in the 90s in my former home. I “pickled” my kitchen cabinets Gray and my bathroom was totally renovated and all the fixtures were what was called then “thunder gray”. The sinks and toilet and shower were just beautiful in such a deep color and the tiles were done in pale pink and gray. I loved it. It was one of the highlights of the house. It was a high maintenance color though because soap scrum and toothpaste was very visible! For me it had its time. I much prefer the warmer colors now.

  15. btoblake

    Grey is a useful tool, but it’s hard to do it well as a dominant color.

    Unconsciously, we expect both greens and greys to have subtle variations and layers of color and brightness, interesting dimension. So, a natural stone counter is wonderful and timeless. A grey wall with white or light grey trim gives the trim pop. Slate steps and floors look cool and comfortable, and the soft, nearly geometric shapes of the natural stone nearly beg to be touched.

    However, when a flat stone grey is used across an entire surface, with no variation, interesting texture or contrast, it looks startlingly flat. We can accidentally get that look of cheap institutional plastic cabinets.

    Unfortunately, a little mess on a flat grey may stand out too much, because eyes will be looking for variations. A varied grey can hide some mess or dust, and certainly should hide fingerprints. (One blended with brown or beige might be lower maintenance that way.)

  16. GJ

    Hello , since today I follow your blog. On Pinterest i noticed this. The question in this blog keeps me busy too for a while. Here in the Netherlands has been the trend for some years also underway. And lately “the gray” is less conformed to sobriety with natural matrialen. This is a trend that is here widening manifests in the low countries. See my pinbord Rustic Living by GJ and sober rural living. Here’s the gray , still far from extinct.

  17. Tiffany

    I first painted my walls grey 7 yrs ago, and even though I’ve moved twice since, the color grey has always had me. My bedroom is grey with happy pops of gold and yellow and silver, my daughters have grey and pink featured in their bedroom, and my son has an awesome dark, moody grey for his perfectly boyish Star Wars room. Grey is so versatile and not boring or bland at all.

    1. Tamara Post author

      Hi there! If you click on the link underneath the photo of the house it will take you to the builder and where you can ask him questions. Many people have asked about the exterior paint color and he has answered that it is a Solid Cabot Stain in Pewter Gray on cedar siding. Hope this helps!:-)

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  19. Kimberly

    I’ve found that if you stick with colors that naturally commonly exist in nature, you can go wrong. I think organic is here for the long haul. It’s reflective of an environmental trend. Don’t fret over your cabinets. My island is BM waterfall blue. 🙂 people love it. Paired with white cabinets with gray undertones for the more conservative.

  20. Vince

    I love the grey as another alternative to the standard beige as neutral color. I don’t really see it in my city so once I start rehabbing I’ll be using this a lot in my rehabs. Thanks for the article

  21. Colleen

    I like gray a lot however I did note that at our local Homeshow last summer, every single house was decorated in shades of gray. They all started to look the same. I think it’s important to introduce some color or the gray WILL become a bit monotonous and overdone.

    1. Tamara Post author

      Hi Genevieve, I looked on Houzz where I found the photo and the builder
      JB Architecture Group, Inc. says, “Please contact our office at (630)357-8100 to discuss purchasing a plan.” Gorgeous house!! ❤️

  22. Linda

    I think grey has finally been overdone. When I attend open houses, grey is everywhere–no originality. Don’t get me wrong, I like a neutral base with pops of color or texture for personality. I am tired of grey, perhaps, due to the gloomy, grey winters where I live.

  23. Vanessa

    We have light blue walls in the family room & kitchen since one room opens up to the other. My choice of sofa was grey because we have a dark wood table and bookshelves and thought it went best. We want to paint our kitchen cabinets grey to tie it all in, they are currently a lighter wood than the new table. I love the way grey looks with light blue, turquoise and yellow. There is a way to make it not so depressing and I think paired with light colors, it looks great. It is neutral and I can keep it around for a while. For the last 5 yrs we have had our living room (used as the kid’s study) with a soothing green on the walls, white desks, bookshelves and grey rug. I love how peaceful and soothing that room feels.

  24. Rhonda B

    I had to smile when reading that grey has been here for a few years now. NOT IN A MAJOR COMMUNITY IN NORTH HOUSTON! We’ve spent an extra long time with Tuscan influence because so many of our designers and builders seem to be stuck in that mode. My designer and I went against local trend when building our new home, using grey throughout. It turned out beautifully, and is the most peaceful, calming house we have ever owned. There are so many accent colors that can be used with grey. I do hope it lasts and is not a trendy color.

  25. Kathryn

    Gray, as it is being used now, is overdone on EVERYTHING and I think it will be on its way out, used in this over saturated capacity. However, gray has always been a neutral seen in both residential and commercial design, so it will continue to be used, but in combination with other neutrals and color.

  26. Barbm1712

    I have never been a fan of gray. I find it depressing and uninspiring though when paired with pinks or yellows it can work. I won’t paint any part of the interior of my home in any shade of gray. I do like the exterior in gray and white and in a few years when we have the exterior of our home painted I will probably go with a soft gray-blue. And, I HATE greige. The name even sounds boring. What is the big deal about ‘in fashion’. I decorate my home to be inviting and comfortable to our family. Oh, and I never wear grey – makes most complexions look dead.

  27. Lori Gaskins

    Tamara,
    We are redoing a home and I stepped out of my box and went grey. The whole house! Repose grey and flannel gray. We have roasted pepper accent walls in 3 rooms with the repose grey and it looks great. I think we just had to watch the undertones of the grey. We are choosing to paint the existing kitchen cabinets a shade of grey (instead of replacing) but I need to be sure to choose a color that won’t be lost in walls. Counter will be whitish with gray and tan specks. This is our first remodel and it’s been fun but challenging. I like the grey and think it’s here to stay because there are undertone colors that can be pulled out as accents to keep it from being boring.

  28. Barbara W.

    I know that Gray is here to stay as I have looked through the myriad of photos of weathered barn wood and beach photos that people have loved through the decades and continue to use .I love it an reuse a lot of barn wood and have plans to stain my wood floor a weathered gray.

  29. Elena

    Here to stay & LONG overlooked. I remember my mom wondering why no one was treating gray as a neutral in the 80s. What can I say she was ahead of the curve. LoL

  30. Thomas

    Personally, I like the look of gray, but am already growing tired of seeing it everywhere. I find that the media really takes hold of a trend an starts marketing it in home magazines on tv shows, etc. Then everyone starts implementing the trend Into their lifestyles. I don’t know how many homes I’ve been to recently that all look the same. Gray walls, accents, furniture, etc. It looks fine, and I don’t mean insult anyone loving this trend, but I find it will not behere for as long as some think. One of the keys to good designis innovation. Once something is very overused, it is not novel or cutting edge anymore. It becomes plain and mundane, especially now, with the amount and availability of media trends spread and are consumed much quicker than in say the 90s. I am actually going to stay away from the trend

  31. Wendy

    Back in 1991, we had our small bathroom professionally remodeled. Our designer picked white and gray as our color scheme way back then and I still love it. He told us white never goes out of style and gray is a great accent color. So for me, 26 later, I’d say gray is not going away.

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