I enjoyed the post from Sunday even though I’m not so fond of the Sherwin-Williams Color of the year.
But anything is better than the gray trend.
And I know that you say to not pay attention to the trends, but still… Why is there still so much gray and when is this gray trend going to ever end? I don’t get it.
*The one sentence was taken from a kind comment from Sunday’s post about Sherwin Williams color of the year 2019.
The rest, is fiction, but based on the words I’ve been hearing for the last half-dozen years or so.
However, before we begin… I have a little musical accompaniment for you.
It goes very nicely with this post about the gray trend, I think.
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart Concerto for Flute and Harp KV 299
Emmanuel Pahud, flute (nobody should be THAT cute AND that talented, but alas he is)
Marie-Pierre Langlamet, harp
Claudio Abbado, conductor Berlin Philharmonie, 1998
Betty asks a very good question and it’s one I’ve heard many times.
When oh when is this horrid gray trend going to be over already? Gray, gray, gray, Laurel. Yuck.
Well, sorry that you feel that way because the answer is never.
Yes, that’s right. It’s not ever going to go away.
And that’s because the gray trend is NOT a trend.
via @limestoneboxwoods – instagram John Stuart House – A fabulous example of American Georgian or neo-classical architecture – Charleston, SC.
Gray is as classic as this gorgeous home in Charleston SC built in 1772, the height of the neo-classical period. More coming up in a sec about neo-classical architecture, interiors and the color gray.
So, what’s the problem? Why is the color gray, currently despised by so many?
I firmly believe that it’s usually not the color, itself. It’s EVERYTHING ELSE. Bad, banal, boring interior design.
Here’s what I’m talking about. And please do not pin these next four images to pinterest or anywhere else. They are here for demo purposes only. If any of these are your rooms, please forgive me.
Please note, that I am not perfect and have displayed my imperfections (or lack of getting it together) numerous times.
Now, there is absolutely nothing wrong with this room, except that it’s not balanced. I’m longing for more white, more black and some color– somewhere. Even a beautiful plant.
Gray needs brown, like we need oxygen. Gray needs warmth and it loves gold, the same way that its cousin blue does.
Oh, that reminds me that some jerk lambasted me for saying that. Whatever. I don’t care, except for his rudeness. It’s fine if he doesn’t see it. Everyone is entitled to their opinion as long as it’s said in a respectful tone.
Here, we can see why some find gray to be depressing. The wall color is fine, I think and I don’t mind the furniture. However, it’s either in the wrong configuration and/or the wrong size. Although the scale is actually quite good.
Please fill your pillows with down and feathers!
How do you know that these pillows aren’t filled with down and feathers?
But, the room needs more variety in tone, more white, black, art, maybe some color too.
Oh, that glorious music is making me forget how bad this room is. And it really doesn’t have to be. However, cranberry does not go with gray. It’s like the revolting mauve and gray (with shiny fake brass) which I have to say was one of the lowest points of our modern-time interiors.
And then, we have more of the same with the ottoman. But, I do like the velvet.
Of course, there’s the art. You saw that one before your eyes could focus. There needs to be a minimum of four inches of breathing space between the art and sofa. This is a tall ceiling, so I’d probably raise everything up about six inches and it will be fine.
But, what ARE those things hanging on the wall, on the left? Strange.
The light fixture is just plain wrong. That belongs in a lady’s dressing room. We need something hunkier with a leather sectional.
This is from one of those furniture companies that sells cheap crappy sets of furniture that they so not-cleverly refer to as transitional. Transitional what? Honestly, I would rather sit on the floor than have anything remotely like this in my home.
No wonder Betty finds gray depressing. I am surmising that is because when she thinks of the gray trend in interiors, she is thinking along the lines of the rooms above.
Below is what I am imagining that she’s not thinking of when she’s thinking of the exquisite beauty of the color gray.
original source unknown
If a color exists abundantly in nature, then it’s not a fad or a trend.
gray sky + gray water + gray clouds + snow = classic
I don’t know how or why at that time in history, but they did. But thank God, is all I can say!
They embraced classical forms and loved gray. After-all, gray is the color of limestone.
Then, perhaps due to an increase awareness of other cultures,(particularly Asian) the 18th century brought about a resurgence in classical forms and colors. The work of Andrea Palladio, an Italian Renaissance architect was discovered and inspired all design of the 18th century.
That is the aforementioned neo-classical style, but it also goes by these terms:
Georgian (mostly Great Britain)
Adam (Scottish Architect)
It permeated everything from architecture, interiors, clothing, art and music.
It was the time when my favorite composer lived and worked. The one you’re presumably listening to.
Below is one of the most famous architects of the neo-classical period, Robert Adam.
You can see his younger, handsome bro, James here. He was also a renowned architect, but over-shadowed by Robert.
George Willison portrait of Robert Adam neoclassical architect
Robert Adam is the architect who embraced the style of Andrea Palladio
In the early days of the United States, our answer to Robert Adam, was Thomas Jefferson.
Let’s look at more examples of gray throughout the last few hundred years in art, interiors and architecture.
I am imagining some poor woman going blind creating this but it sure is glorious!
This phenomenal building in the neo-classical style went through several incarnations between 1730-1860. It is very much in the style of Robert Adam.
I swiped a couple of images from the film Amadeus.
Fabulous set design of Mozart’s 18th century neo-classical home in Vienna.
And while not much gray, I love the pale tones spiced with gold.
Plus, look at all of that not-boring beige!
Back to not-boring-gray
A Fabulous Enfilade at the Compiègne Castle, Picardy, France
How beautiful are these colors! And more Hammershoi here!
Those interior shutters make my heart skip a beat or three!
I first came across this photo a few years ago and thought it was some totally cool couple hanging in their pad in TriBeca or something like that. But no. The photo by Horst P Horst for Vogue Magazine is 50 years old. This is Cy Twombly and his lovely wife hanging in their pad in Rome. Talk about timeless.
Below are some of my favorite designers who embrace the color gray in their work.
How cool is George’s kitchen! That’s a true English unkitchen!
I was incredibly lucky to get to meet Ben, George and Francis Terry on my trip to England last year. (that link has some of their work)
What cracks me up is that George works for a firm called [Robert] Adam Architecture. And no, there is no relation to the Robert Adam from the 18th century. That’s what they say, anyway. I love stuff like that!
Does anyone else love rooms when they’re only primed? Or am I the only nutcase who does? lol
Adore Jessica’s work. You can see more of it here.
And it’s not possible to do a post about “gray” without including at least one image from the fabulous Loi Thai of Tone on Tone. Not only is his blog smashing, but he’s become quite the thing on instagram. And for good reason. The man is bathed in beauty. Every single time!
No, the gray trend and gray paint trend are not over. And if used the right way, can be one of the most glorious colors, IMO.
***A few important notes***
The voting for the Amara Blogging Awards is closing at about 7:00AM on the 19th New York Time. So, if you have not, please vote for me. I very much appreciate that! There is a lot of competition, so we’ll have to see.
In addition, the Serena and Lily custom upholstery sale is ending on the 19th at midnight Pacific time, so if you’d like to take advantage of the 20% percent off, now’s the time! Use code: OPTIONS