How to Update the Gray Trend with the New Color Trend

earth colors

Greens in nature

WITH 2022 HALF OVER, many of our clients are asking us how to update the gray trend with the new color trend. The answer involves incorporating earth colors! Yes, the gray trend is ending – finally. The current trend toward earth tones is very different than the browns, beiges, golds, olives, and  maroons of the 80s. Colors for 2022 are warmer, earth-toned schemes of updated beiges, blues, greens, browns, warm grays, whites, and greiges. We’re even seeing more pinks and peaches, like the early morning sky of a new day. “If you’re afraid to bring more color into your home, you need not worry,” – says Lili Englehart of Color Confident Home. “Using neutrals on your walls as a backdrop is not going out of style.”

Though we are getting lots of requests for color on walls, clients who want to change up accessories often, or per season, gravitate toward neutral backdrops on their walls so they have the freedom of variety. Others feel calmed by using neutrals all around. The key to creating depth and a designed look with all neutrals is to use pattern and texture. So whether you want to add color to your home or choose from the myriad of neutrals and their hues, we can help. We take the fear out of choosing colors that are right for you and your home with 3 Easy Steps to colors you’ll love!

The New Color Trend
Evergreen Fog

Sherwin-Williams 2022 Color of the Year

Design trends typically have a lifespan of about seven to ten years. Fads, such as the current black and white craze, go out of style even quicker. Besides the normal lifespan of color and design trends, the COVID-19 pandemic also contributed to the new color trend. Just as the pandemic has shaped every other aspect of life, its effects have also reached home design. With everyone working and studying at home 24/7, being surrounded by gray became depressing quickly. As Joa Studholme, the color curator for Farrow & Ball, recently said in a New York Times article, “There’s nothing about gray that evokes wellness….There is a tendency to crave warm tones in challenging times.” She goes on, “It’s all about being warm and earthy and choosing deeply saturated color. It’s about trying something that gives you a great big hug.” Notice the similarities in 2022 Colors of the Year – the choices reflect this need for color. For instance, Farrow & Ball’s Tanner’s Brown, Scotch Blue, Green Smoke and India Yellow, Benjamin Moore’s Aegean Teal (2021) and October Mist (2022), and Sherwin Williams’ Urbane Bronze (2021) and Evergreen Fog (2022) all offer a much needed atmosphere of comfort.

2022 Benjamin Moore Color Palette

Benjamin Moore 2022 Color Palette

Lili emphasized, “It’s especially important to move away from gray in Midwestern states, where six months out of the year are cold and gray outside. We don’t want to bring that chilliness inside!” Updated neutral options, such as greiges and light beiges, instead make the home feel more inviting after coming in from the winter cold. Even some warm grays can make a drastic difference as opposed to neutral or cool grays.

Update the Gray Trend with the New Color Trend: Earth Colors

If your home is currently in the gray trend, and you’re stumped on how to update, don’t fret. There are plenty of solutions to create a fresh look, while incorporating the gray you already have in your home with the incoming color trends. Many people look to only update one or two rooms at a time, then follow up with the other rooms at a later date. This often leaves clients wondering how they can refresh some spaces with new colors and decor without dating rooms with older color palettes.

A great way to avert this concern is to assess the overall color scheme of your home and the new colors you wish to include, even if the rooms are different styles. Then, choose furniture and accessories that have accents of colors and elements from each room to create a connection. Small, less expensive items such as pillows, throws, rugs, and artwork are a few of the many accessories you may consider to achieve this. For example, if you have a recently updated kitchen and dining area from the gray trend and a colorful living room with blues and greens, you could use a tablecloth with blues, greens, and hints of gray in the kitchen/dining area and an area rug or artwork with a similar color scheme in the living room. The 60-30-10 rule is a helpful tool to keep in mind to create harmony and flow amongst the varying rooms in your home. Color Confident Home will help you with a new color scheme, and if you need help furnishing or accessorizing a particular room, we can create an eDesign to help you furnish and accessorize one room at a time!

Guest room blue yellow

Color Confident Home eDesign using the 60-30-10 Rule

Listen to your home

Most importantly, listen to your home. This seems like a simple suggestion, however mixing color and design trends is tricky. We often see homes decorated with competing and mismatched components due to too many patterns or uncoordinated hues. Beth Maguire, the Benjamin Moore designers’ representative in Michigan, best put it in words, “Design for the home you have, not the home you want.” If you struggle to find a balance between what you want and what your home wants, take into consideration the fixed finishes that are difficult and expensive to replace. If your budget doesn’t allow a total remodel, consider the fixed elements and take them into consideration when deciding on a new color scheme. They include, but are not limited to, flooring/carpeting, tile, countertops, cabinets, fireplaces, etc. Any elements not being replaced must be coordinated with your new color scheme in order to create a deliberate, designed look that has harmony and flow throughout your home. For an expert color consultation, call us or send us an email!

Stuck Choosing a Paint Color?

Choosing a paint color

“I’m stuck choosing a paint color! Should I to turn to my painter for a recommendation?” Choosing paint colors is a daunting task. Upon first thought, asking your painter may seem like a good plan of action. But beware of painter-recommended color troubles!  Painters are not necessarily trained in color and are very busy. They are skilled in painting but can’t give their full attention required to choose the right colors for your home. “So who is the best person to help me choose colors I will love?” you may ask. Lili Englehart, assistant color consultant, explains why our processes at Color Confident Home are a better, more accurate option. Using a Certified Color Expert will leave you feeling secure in your color choices before they go up on a wall.

Painter-Recommended Color Troubles

To begin, painters usually recommend what happens to be popular in their most recent jobs. As of right now, those colors tend to be neutrals, mainly grays. Your painter has good intentions, but you may run into painter-recommended color troubles! Although painters work with color in their day-to-day jobs, they may not be up-to-date on current color trends. What is in? What is passe? More importantly, they may not be able to predict what the next upcoming trends will be, and which ones will soon be fading out. For example, it is predicted within the next few years the gray trend will phase out, and more colorful schemes will trend. However, if you want to sell in the near future, it is best to choose more timeless and classic colors.  Someone who specializes in color trends, like a Certified Color Expert, studies the most current and future color trends. With us by your side, you’ll have more confidence to choose the right colors for YOU!

Pocket-size paint chips

Stuck with Pocket-sized Paint Chips?

“Why does the color on my wall look so different from the pocket-sized paint chips or the walls in my friend’s house?” Even though a paint chip or a painter-recommended color can look great in one home, it might not look so great in another. First, a color from a small paint chip or splotches painted on the wall will not give you a realistic idea of what it will look like. Color gets lighter and brighter on a large area. More importantly, the distortion may be caused by uncoordinated hue families. To the untrained and even well-trained eye, it is difficult to determine the specific hue family of a color. Special tools that scientifically analyze color data give us accurate results from which to choose colors. Thus we coordinate the hue families with your existing furnishings and fixed finishes to create harmony and flow in your color scheme. Check out our 3 Easy Steps to confident color selection.

Lighting Enlightenment

Lighting Enlightenment for Choosing Color

Another important factor to consider when choosing colors is lighting know-how. Not all painters are aware how lighting can affect color. Lighting can make or break the look of a color once it is up on the wall. Different types of lighting such as warm, cool, fluorescent, and daylight all change the appearance of a color. For instance, grays are particularly tricky. In one lighting condition such as cool light, a gray could appear to have a hint of purple. The exact same gray in warm lighting conditions could have a hint of yellow. Even the direction from which natural light comes into a room can affect how a color will look. It is best to view a color in the same conditions in which it will regularly appear in your home, including lighting. At Color Confident Home, we show you a tried-and-true testing process to ensure you can accurately envision the colors we recommend. Confidently choose the right colors before you paint your walls!

Choosing a Paint Color with Confidence

Painting is an expensive endeavour. Choosing a paint color with confidence allows you to live with a color you love without the expense of repainting. A painter could get lucky, but playing the odds on a big job like painting your home is risky and unnecessary. Rather than being stuck choosing a paint color, Color Confident Home can help you choose colors that will suit the needs of your home. With Color Confident Home’s specific, scientific color data, larger paint swatches, and a foolproof color testing technique, you will feel more confident. Our mission is to help you choose the right colors the first time!

Choosing Exterior Paint Colors

Choosing Exterior Paint Colors

Now that spring is officially here, homeowners are calling me for help choosing their exterior paint colors. Many factors go into narrowing down colors that work. When choosing exterior paint colors, factoring in the overall look, the individual elements, and the neighboring houses enables me to empower homeowners to choose the right colors the first time.

Exterior paint colors

Exterior colors of a home that relate to each other. (Color palette by Color Confident Home)

Consider the Overall Look

In my area, so many homes are brick with siding on the upper level or only on the sides and back. Some also have stone and brick along with siding. When paint colors don’t relate to the brick or stone, or worse yet, when the brick and stone don’t relate to each other or look too busy, the house looks like there are two different houses stuck together. If you have a new build, all the materials and colors must be chosen at the same time to create a look that is styled. For a partial renovation or a new coat of paint, the existing elements must be considered.

Brick and siding don't relate

The upper house and lower house are two different styles. The siding color and window trim on the upper windows does not relate to the brick. (Photo by homewithkeki)

Assess the Individual Elements

To help homeowners narrow down colors from the thousands of choices available, I begin with the shingles, brick, stone, pavers, landscaping, and neighboring homes. Considering the hues in the architectural materials is the first step in creating a cohesive color scheme. Just as with interiors, creating harmony and flow around the house as well as in the neighborhood is important.

The siding does not relate to the brick or the stone, and the stone and brick do not relate. In addition, the green is too bright for the brick. (Photo by ashiyasediet.info)

Remember the Neighboring Houses

When considering the look of their exteriors, most homeowners want a distinct look without their home screaming flashy or garish. Builders usually vary the types and colors of brick and other elements on houses in a subdivision. Thus, a look that is different enough from the house next door or across the street can be accomplished by looking at the unique hues in a home’s shingles, brick, stone, and landscaping. By creating a color scheme with coordinating hues, homeowners can have a look that is unique yet harmonizes with the neighborhood.

Choosing Exterior Paint Colors that Make Sense

White windows limit the trim color you can use around the windows and most likely the majority of your trim. Note that a house with brick looks best with windows and a trim color that is not stark white. In the past some homeowners painted the trim and siding the same color. For a fresh, updated look choose a trim color that contrasts with the siding color. In addition, a front door color can announce the entrance and give your home a unique look. Beware of choosing bright, saturated colors with a more muted color scheme, unless you’re consulting with a designer trained in color. Your door will not only pop, it will look like it belongs on a different house.

A yellow door that is too saturated and bright for the brick. (Photo by Edward Jones, Clarksville)

A door that coordinates with the hue families of the architectural elements.

If you’re interested in reading about other options for choosing color with brick, read this article. For help choosing your exterior colors and color schemes, contact me for help choosing the right colors the first time!