Weather is not the only thing turning cold this season; paint colors have also transitioned from warm tones to cooler hues. Design experts agree that gray is the hot new neutral, replacing taupe and beiges in popularity.
Despite being considered drab and boring in the past, gray has been elevated to modern design by experts who point out that gray coordinates well with pops of bright color and also pairs well with white for a clean Scandinavian look. In the bathroom, grays have been coordinated with cool marble for an antique feel with a modern twist.
Paint companies agree with designers that gray is the new neutral. According to the Benjamin Moore website (www.benjaminmoore.com), Silver Chain, Stonington Gray, Revere Pewter, Classic Gray and Gray Owl are among its top sellers. Valspar (www.valspar.com) is also promoting several gray paints in their Sixth Sense and Nurtured by Nature lines for 2015 and Sherwin-Williams (www.sherwinwilliams.com) promotes over 50 gray paints, highlighting the versatility of gray as a cool or warm hue that works well with wood finishes, natural stone and modern interiors.
Consumers who prefer bold color choices are also purchasing purples, greens, blues, oranges and reds with a gray color base. For example, the Pantone Color Institute introduced Marsala this year. The earthy, wine red color is the perfect companion for many gray-tone paints.
Bottom line, if consumers are seeking a modern look, gray can fulfill their needs. Designers also recommend monochromatic palettes, using varying shades of the same color for walls, trim and doors for a streamline effect.