Moving on with gray paint colors, I decided to divide it up into cool gray paint colors and warm gray paint colors. Or grEy if that is your preferred that spelling. I prefer it, but learned it as grAy, so I’m sticking with that. Here’s the last post about gray in case you missed it.
Today we are going to focus on cool gray paint colors.
This is the deal with gray and those of you who work with it a lot will understand this.
It is very rarely gray.
It is usually either blue, violet, green or even a bit yellow or brown, but most commonly blue and violet. If brownish, we either call it greige if light [gray + beige] and bray if darker [brown + gray and sometimes a bit of violet].
There are a few grays which straddle different categories. Ya know the problem children. But sometimes problem children can be the most interesting. Sometimes. :]
And it takes the tiniest dab of these undertones to make what looks like a pure gray on the chip to look like something else on the wall.
Yes, very scary. And even scarier. Sometimes what it looks like on the chip is nothing like what it looks like on the wall! The truth be told, as difficult as it is to get white right. I think that gray is worse!
This is why you must test, test, test! And in all kinds of lights because the light is going to do some wacky things to our beautiful gray. However, maybe that’s one of the things that’s so fabulous about this ethereal color. [in its paler tones]
Today’s grays are going to center around the cool gray paint colors.
Isn’t gray by definition cool? Well, yes and no. Some grays do have warmer undertones. And some have cooler undertones. However, it’s sooooo easy for gray to go blue and/or icy. So, I’m going to try to avoid anything that will read baby blue and stay away from icy. Just to make it even more confusing, some of these grays do straddle between warmer gray and cooler gray. Don’t worry, I’ll spell it all out.
These are the paler shades of gray. I’m keeping this list to Benjamin Moore.
No Sherman Williams which is not because they aren’t good. They’re too good! One day, I think I will write a post about the best Sherwin Williams Gray paint colors.
Nine fabulous Benjamin Moore Cool Gray Paint Colors
PAPER WHITE 1590 Paper White is a very soft, verrrrrry pale gray. It is so pale that it might even look white in some lights. I think that it’s a better choice for a darker room. Therefore, it’s a good one for a gray for a north facing room. It is actually neither warm nor cool, just a very pale dove-gray and a wonderful choice for anyone wanting to give a pale gray room a go.
My bathroom again. Oh, By the way, I have already done a post on great pale gray shades for bathrooms and there is a lot of overlap. I’ve had this in my bathroom for nearly 2 years now. I never tire of it. It’s almost like an opal. It’s always lovely and soft no matter the lighting.
STONINGTON GRAY HC-170
Stonington is a favorite amongst gray aficionados. It is probably more of a warm gray, but it does have a bit of blue in it, without ever reading as blue. You can’t see it on the chip, but I did first paint my bathroom this color and then I changed it to the Shoreline
Another image with Stonington by Ashley Whittaker
And even more popular is Horizon. Before we sold our home I had painted both our master bedroom and bathroom in this soft color. I think that this color is a fabulous color for bathrooms, especially with Carrara Marble. Our bathroom only had a small skylight but I really liked the color in there. It looks a lot darker than on the chip. In the bedroom which faces south-east, I was less impressed, however that doesn’t mean that this is a bad color. The bedroom was devoid of architectural interest. So, in a room with lots of moldings, I think it would be a great color! It is a pale gray with a bit of blue-green in it. Never icy!
Wickham gray is a very interesting color. It’s the cleanest gray of the lot. I did use it in a very dark entry and while it brightened up a surprising amount, it also appeared a tad icy because of the lack of natural light. However, it was still really nice. It is not a cold gray and it does have a lot of blue-green in it.
Moonshine is a pale gray with very,very slight green undertones. I’ve never used it but there are folks who absolutely adore this soft shade.
A couple of years ago, I specified this color for a master bedroom and the client adores it! It’s one of those that changes a lot with the light. Sometimes it reads ever so slightly lavender and sometimes goes a bit blue, but a very, very nice grayed out blue. It’s a very soft color and wonderful for a bedroom.
This shade is a bit deeper than Pebble Beach with blue undertones. I would definitely check it out. I read about this color on a blog from someone probably as nuts as I am. haha. She went through just about every color on both of the main B. Moore fan decks before she discovered the color on the Affinity fan deck. If you don’t know, the affinity colors were the first low VOC colors that came out several years ago. They claim that it only takes one coat. Usually, not, but never more than two.
Coventry is a bit darker than eternity. Again, I’ve never used it but has gotten rave reviews. And yes, it’s that Julianne Moore. I honestly don’t think it’s fair that one person should possess that amount of beauty and talent!
for your pinning pleasure below is the recap of the Benjamin Moore cool gray paint colors.
and there it is… Next will be the warmer gray colors and there are some fabulous colors there too! I’m also going to do a post on darker grays. That’ll be fun. Are there any light cool gray colors that you love that I missed?
Finally. We have a day above freezing here in New York! And it’s Daylight Savings Time. Hooray!