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Shades of gray add elegance to interiors

Mary Carol Garrity
Scripps Howard News Service
GV512DH8V.3
Bob Greenspan - NEWSCOM
If you want a rich, saturated color on your walls that will bring a room alive without competing with your artwork and upholstered furnishings, paint your room gray.

The color gray has gotten a bad rap.

Think about it. Gray day. Gray hair.

It’s time to toss out those dreary images because the sun is shining on this cool, multidimensional color that is absolutely hot in the world of interior design.

Pick a shade of gray, from dove to charcoal, and weave it into your decor. Here’s how to make it work:

Walls

If you want a rich, saturated color on your walls that will bring a room alive, paint your room gray. Forget the myth that gray walls will make a room feel dark and gloomy. I’ve found that when you use gray as a backdrop for a space, every color and texture in the room explodes with energy. Gray lends lots of power without competing with the room’s focal points, such as lovely artwork or knockout furnishings.

Furnishings

Because it comes in so many great shades and suits every style of home, gray is an ideal color for upholstered furniture. When I work with families, I often recommend gray upholstery fabric on the pieces they use every day. The furniture won’t show the wear and tear of young children and pets. With the rich backdrop of a gray sofa, you can go in a million directions when it comes to accent pillows with threading in white, yellow, orange, teal, coral, pink, citron, emerald ... you name it.

Gray lends itself well to contemporary and transitional style homes, especially when you bring it into the interior landscape through pieces covered in bold geometric patterns. It’s fun to mix modern patterns with upholstered furnishings and trims that pull in revitalized traditional patterns such as chevrons and florals.

When it comes to wood furnishings, I’m a fan of just about every finish known to man, including painted wood. You can find gray finishes in dining tables and chairs, side tables and bookcases.

Bedding

Stitch together bedding elements that feature gray, yellow and white in a wide range of fabric patterns and textures.

Accents

If you’d like just a bit of gray in your interior, try an accent lamp or a temple jar.

Life is less stressful when you pick accent rugs in colors and patterns that camouflage the signs of daily use. What could be a better pick than gray?

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The Charlotte Observer welcomes your comments on news of the day. The more voices engaged in conversation, the better for us all, but do keep it civil. Please refrain from profanity, obscenity, spam, name-calling or attacking others for their views.

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