Grey comes in a multitude of shades, some warm and some cool, and because of this it can be a tricky colour to get right. Choose the wrong the shade and your room will feel cold and uninviting but layer your greys in the right quantities and your living room is suddenly the epitome of chic, modern styling.
If you love the idea of using grey in your living room but don’t know where to start, we’ve identified 15 different ideas for living room grey with tips and advice on getting it right, every time.
1. Layer upon layer
Use just one shade of grey and your room can feel flat and dull so it’s important to layer the shades, one on top of the other. Start with a base layer, a grey that really inspires you, and add different shades through furniture, soft furnishings and accessories.
This John Lewis croft sofa is deep and dark and works well against the backdrop of dark wall and cooler flooring. The throws and cushions in grey add texture too.
2. Shelf update
Don’t limit your love affair with grey to just wall colour, if you love this hue consider new furniture pieces in this shade to add a modern edge to your living room. Shelving units are a great way to add in grey, and particularly good when you don’t want wood or white melamine.
3. Mix with metallics
There’s nothing so glamorous as some beautiful gold accessories which, of course pair well with a base palette of greys. Use different grey shades layered throughout the room for your neutral backdrop, retaining the focus on the metallics and any other colour you choose to introduce. Keep it soft or add bold bright accents; just ensure they don’t detract from the shine and sparkle of your metals.
4. The perfect backdrop
With its charm and appeal lying in the ability to offer the best neutral base for interior décor, grey is the ideal shade with which to decorate your walls. It won’t intrude on the brighter accent colours if you use them; darker greys give them depth; paler greys helping them to pop.
Farrow & Ball Worsted is a rich and warm grey and a perfect backdrop for brighter pops of colour.
5. Make it monochrome
Black and white doesn’t have to be boring, and when teamed with a pale grey it can look exceptionally striking. Use soft greys on walls, particularly when you want to accent details and original features, then add a mix of darker greys with black and white accessories. Mix them up to get the full impact of this dramatic scheme.
The Hendrix coffee table from Cuckooland softens the monochrome look yet the black legs help tie the scheme together.
6. Simple and chic
We all love the on-trend colourful sofas but sometimes we want to keep it simple and uncomplicated. That’s where a grey sofa really comes into its own. It suits all styles of living room, from country cottage to industrial to contemporary and anything in between. Give it some life and add a few strong accent colours or simply layer your greys for a more monotone feel.
7. Eclectic and dramatic
If you’re not one to shy away from being bold and daring, then go dark with your greys. Painted on the walls and even the ceiling too it can act as a striking basis for bright colours and rock and roll décor. You’ll need plenty of artificial lighting to make the space useable at night, but these darker charcoals make a room feel exceptionally moody and atmospheric.
8. Golds and greens
Greens and botanical prints work effortlessly with grey tones as shown here in this bright, light living room. The homeowner has paired a subtle shade of grey with golds and greens allowing the features to shine, with a bold print that doesn’t impinge on the lighter feel of the space.
9. Pretty pastels
Use soft warm greys and mix them with pastels for a pretty colour scheme. Prevent it from feeling too sweet and sugary by accenting with darker, moodier shades seen here with black and white cushions and dark wood table. The result is a calm living room suitable for the whole family.
Blogger, Arianna, has created a sumptuous, cosy space packed full of texture and warmth. The wool throw is from The Future Kept, art work from Desenio and a selection of cushions including pink cushion from Trouva.
10. Warm and cosy
If you opt for a darker, charcoal grey on your walls yet don’t want the living room to feel all doom and gloom, lighten the space by using white based art work. Include pops of colour through your soft furnishings and make the most of your cosy feel by adding layers of sheepskins for warmth and texture.
11. Grey feature wall
Create a quirky focal point in your room with some grey based wallpaper. It’s such an easy way to introduce colour into your room but still focus on the neutral hues of grey colours. You can be as mad and outlandish as you like, or keep it simple and elegant, the choice is yours.
This striking wallpaper from Woodchip and Magnolia features ink dipped artwork on a mid grey background and gives the living room a true pop of eclectic colour.
12. Nomadic boho
Palest greys and darkest blacks come together with stark whites to create the nomad look which has become rather popular in the last few seasons. Mix up your greys with a black and white pattern in shaggy textures. Add some natural materials like rattan and wicker plus lots of greenery and even a cactus or two, and you have a very on-trend living space.
13. Begin with the floor
When you’re not sure how to start, look down. The floor is often the best place to begin when you’re building a scheme and if you want to include grey, this is a great kicking off point. Build up your look layering rugs, furniture and accessories to create the living room which suits you and your family perfectly.
14. Grey marble
Whilst we might not all want to invest in marble furniture, a marble style feature is a great way to incorporate some greys into your living room. Marble effect wallpaper, on one wall or throughout the room looks elegant and opulent, and mixed with golds and rich textures creates a very inviting space.
15. Keep it cool
Due to its versatility and fashionable standing in the interiors world, grey must be one of the easiest shades to work with. Creating a living room which feels cool and crisp is easy when you use a piece like a darker grey rug to anchor the space. When you feel like a change in accent colour, no need to invest in a new rug every time, the neutral shade always works.
This dark grey rug from Ikea sets the tone for this cool, crisp living space.