How to Pick the Right Shade of Grey

How to Pick the Right Shade of Grey


More popular than ever before, grey has gone far beyond a flash-in-the-pan trend - we'd even go so far to say that it has become something of a staple in clients' homes thanks to its many qualities and versatility. To meet this rising demand, Dulux Trade has introduced additional grey tones in this year's colour offering. But with so many shades on offer, how do you help your clients find the shade that's best suited to their space? Dulux Creative Director Marianne Shillingford and Senior Colour and Design Manager Rebecca Williamson have the answers.

For spaces low on light

Perfectly Taupe, Potters Clay 2, Polished Pebble, Swansdown

If your clients' spaces aren't blessed with lots of natural light, it needn't mean they have to stick to white. 'The best greys for north-facing rooms are warm greys and greyed neutrals that have hints of pink, gold or yellow in them, like Perfectly Taupe and Potters Clay 2, Polished Pebble and Swansdown,' explains Marianne. These hues work well in rooms with pale fabrics and accessories. To maximise the illusion of light even further, suggest experimenting with some clever design tricks such as hanging a collection of mirrors to reflect light around the space.

For spaces with natural materials

Deep Fossil, Warm Pewter, Silver Quill, Dusted Moss 2

'Grey looks incredible in contrast with pure white and natural wood elements,' says Marianne. 'The trick is to create just enough contrast to make the natural material look fabulous. For pale, warm coloured materials such as light oak and limestone, try a darker shade of grey such as Deep Fossil or Warm Pewter. For cooler coloured materials like steel, white marble, and concrete, go for warmer mid-tone greys such as Silver Quill and Dusted Moss 2' advises Marianne.

For adding ambience to spaces

Natural Slate, White Mist

'Choosing your grey is all down to the mood your client is trying to achieve and how they want the space to feel,' says Rebecca. 'For example, a dark charcoal grey like Natural Slate will create a sumptuous and restful space, whereas a cool white like White Mistwill create a light and airy setting.'

'The very nature of grey is that it can adapt to the rest of the space very easily. So, whatever the season, the homeowner can add or take away elements to create the right atmosphere,' Rebecca explains.

For complementing bright accent colours

Rock Salt, Urban Obsession

'The best thing about grey is that it is one of the most versatile shades,' says Rebecca. 'It's the perfect backdrop to other hues, from zesty yellow to create a more energetic living space, to coral and copper which reflect real warmth and character.'

'Use grey like a canvas to offset your clients favourite colourful things against,' adds Marianne. 'Add colour by painting trim such as skirting board and window frames in rich, vibrant shades.' Try Rock Salt and Urban Obsession to make your punchy coloured accessories and furniture pop.

To browse these colours and the whole Dulux Trade range, visit our colour page or order a copy of the Dulux Trade Professional Colour Guide.

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