choosing the right gray paint

When we first moved in to our bungalow, I went on a painting frenzy throughout the main floor of the house. We choose a dark gray for the master bedroom – a striking colour. Both Dan and I loved it. However, after several months of searching and searching for the right curtain, accent pillow and headboard fabrics for that room, I started to love the charcoal grey less and less. Because it was such a dark colour, it was really difficult to match, unless you used white (which we have enough of already with all the white furniture). I found a few fabrics online that I thought would work nicely, but they were super expensive designer fabrics. Nothing was coming up in our “sale bin” budget. So, after spotting some curtains in IKEA that were a great price, I decided it was actually cheaper to re-paint than to leave the charcoal colour and buy the expensive fabric. Time to re-paint, but how to choose the right gray paint?

master bedroom 1

I looked at a few swatches and thought I got it right. But then once the paint went up on the wall, I realized how purple it looked. You really need to pay attention to the undertones of grays, as they can really come through once the paint is up on the wall. This one? Totally lavender. Ugh.

I went back to the store for a second can and this time went for a more green-grey (called coventry grey, HC169). Luckily a few strokes in with this new colour and I knew it was just right. One coat and it was done – the perfect light grey tone I was hoping for. DSC_0118

Stay tuned to see how the bedroom mini-reno turns out!

  • Courtney

    Whoa! I had no idea you had painted so recently! Good on ya!

    You know how much I was loving that dark granite on your walls… I actually just went to the Behr website and used their colour-matching program, and guess what! It actually coordinates well with “Beach Towel” which is the colour we used in our living and dining rooms!

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  • jen

    Hi can you tell me what colour that dark grey colour is that you used initially and who makes it…thanks! Looks great!

  • Gia

    I gotta say, I loved the room before in that dark charcoal color!!!!!! So much better. Love that color!!!!

    • gemma

      Yeah – we really liked the deep charcoal colour in theory but once it was up on the walls it was just a bit too dark for our little house. Since all the rooms are on the one floor, we found it feels a lot more open and spacious if the colours are all light and in the same general scheme. We’re definitely keeping the charcoal colour in mind though for another future project!