Fifty shades of grey…at home

You can’t have escaped the juggernaut that is the novel Fifty Shades of Grey by E. L. James. The trilogy of the same name takes up the top three spots on Amazon, and there are well-thumbed copies being read in almost every bus or tube carriage in the land. The title, however, could equally apply to the world of interiors right now – every living room, every kitchen, every bar, restaurant and bus stop is painted in some variation on the colour grey.


You could blame it on Farrow and Ball – its palette of grey paint is so delectable, so subtle in its variant hues, that the company just make you want to bathe in their warm glows. And once interiors magazines started featuring houses covered in the stuff, month in month out, all the other paint companies sat up and began to take note, increasing their output of anything with ranging towards grey.

But the main reason it is so popular is because it's so workable. Yes, grey literally goes with everything, from white, to blue, to green, to red – think of a colour and put it against a grey background in your mind. Trust us, it will work.

But the new way to do greys is to forget the wishy-washy almost-whites of yesteryear and go for a full on moody shout of grey, the colour of a murderously stormy sky, all dark and sexy. With its inky tones it will make even the cheapest of furniture before it look expensive, and goes rather well with other rich hues like this purple sofa and cluster of black pendants.

But why stop at just the walls? Use the grey to cover the ceilings, too – instead of making the room feel darker it will actually give an air of cosiness and compeleteness, stopping the eye from instantly differentiating between the wall and ceilings. Go on we dare you.

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Pip McCormac, Guest Editor

View all posts by Pip McCormac, Guest Editor