Tips, Ideas & Inspiration For Styling Grey Walls With Colourful Artworks
If you have blank grey walls, you may be thinking they look a bit dull & need a touch of colour to liven them up.
The fantastic thing about having a grey wall colour, whether dark or light, is it’s a neutral colour which accommodates any colour palette.
So it’s dead simple to inject some life into those blank & boring grey walls with some colourful wall art.
What colour art is best for grey walls? Being a neutral colour means any colour, or combination of coloured art, will match a grey wall. But the existing room décor also needs to be taken into consideration.
Grey is a colour associated with formality & authority, this is why many offices & departments are predominantly grey.
But it’s far from being a dull colour, as it makes a versatile canvas & backdrop with which to apply any colour scheme.
The Right Coloured Art Will Breathe New Life Into Your Grey Walls
Sometimes grey gets overlooked as a choice for wall colour because by itself it can appear dull or dreary.
Whether your walls are light or dark grey, it's the perfect backdrop for subtle hues or bold & colourful artworks.
Once you begin adding art, accent colours & other décor, a predominantly grey space can really take on a life of it's own.
Should Art Be An Accent Colour?
Yes & no in my humble opinion.
The advice from most interior designers is for art to reflect the accent colours of a room & to use up to, but no more than, 3 colours in your décor palette.
If you’ve read any of my other articles, then I apologise for repeating myself!
But the 60/30/10 rule always deserves a mention.
The main, or primary colour should consist of about 60% & are things like the walls, main furniture pieces & floor coverings.
The secondary colour are décor items such as curtains, other furniture & can also include an accent wall.
Accent colours are the remaining 10% of décor accessories like cushions, lamp shades & artworks.
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This is a terrific guideline to follow, as it will prevent you from having an unbalanced colour scheme.
But when it comes to artwork, I feel that rules can be bent if not broken.
Balancing Art Colour With Décor
Having grey walls means the 60/30/10 rule is very flexible.
Grey walls needn’t be the primary colour, as already mentioned, it can act as a neutral, or blank canvas if you will, in which to paint the room’s colour palette against.
You can use 3 colours & the various hues & shades of those colours, or 2 colours, or even a single colour of various shades.
This means choosing wall art colour becomes quite flexible.
Like most things in life, it always comes back to balance.
If the colours of the artwork are tied into the rest of the space without becoming the prominent colour, then it’s probably fine.
But if you’re using minimal colour, for example a neutral décor with just a single colourful couch, then a large artwork reflecting the colour of the couch would work really well.
But say the curtains, lamp shades, floor rug & couch are the same colour, then a similar artwork may be too much.
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Designer tips & guidelines are just that, so if it looks good to you, then go for it.
After all, you’ll be the one spending time in that space.
Choosing Art Colour To Match The Mood
It’s well known that colour affects our psychology & how we feel.
This is why corporations choose the colours in their logos & businesses use the décor they do .. it’s no accident, they want you feeling a certain way.
It’s quite a science & you can apply it for creating the mood you wish for your home décor.
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In basic terms, colours are split into either warm or cool shades as shown below.
Grey walls on their own can be very formal & feel utilitarian.
But once you start adding a splash of colourful artworks, they take on a whole new life.
For a homely & snug mood, warm & earthy coloured art will help to create an inviting feeling.
Cool colours such as light blues & greens reflect nature's own colours & introduce a calming & relaxed atmosphere.
If a space consists of predominantly cool colours, then selecting art consisting of warm colours can bring balance.
Of course, a mainly warm colour palette can be balanced with art consisting of cooler colours.
Bright artworks that use yellow, orange, zesty greens & even pink & purples are a fabulous way to introduce energy to a space & add vibrancy.
If you want to create a more dignified décor or use a more minimalistic approach, black & white art & fine art photography prints can be a good choice.
How Many Different Coloured Artworks Can You Hang On A Grey Wall?
If you love art & photography as I do, it’s tempting to hang every picture you like on the walls.
Although grey will accommodate any colour of art, can you have too many colours going on?
Can you have too much art?
This will depend on your décor style or theme, as well as how the art is displayed.
Boho décor is perfect for displaying an eclectic mix of artworks, either on the walls or simply leaning on the floor.
But for more modern & contemporary styles, too much wall art can look cluttered & too much art of various colours will create incoherency & look visually noisy.
In many ways it comes back to the mood or feel you’re creating for the space.
All the cool colours in the world aren’t going to be relaxing if the walls are a hectic collection of artworks.
An appealing way to display a number of art pieces is to treat them as a single artwork.
This can be done by arranging them like you would a gallery wall.
Even if they’re different sizes, you can arrange them on the floor first to create one coherent display before you start banging any nails in the walls.
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Maybe you’ve inherited grey walls & never realised how versatile they are.
Perhaps you’ve been contemplating redecorating & was unsure about using grey.
I hope this article has changed your mind & given you some inspiration.
Except for white, grey walls won’t clash with any colour scheme or artwork hanging on them.
Even dark grey walls can be lifted out of the doldrums with the use of a colourful décor & bright, vibrant artworks.
Light grey can sometimes appear stark & unwelcoming, but a few select art pieces in the right colours will quickly change that.
Please feel free to share this article if you know somebody who may find value in it, thanks!