Now that we’ve got the exterior paint nailed down, it’s on to the interior. And for some reason this feels a lot harder. I know that I want a nice neutral grey, not too cold or too beige. I want it to be dark enough that it will contrast with the white trim in the room, but light enough to add the feeling of space and light to the room.
In reading about all the various colors, I learned about this concept called LRV. This refers to the amount of light a color either absorbs or reflects back into the room. On a scale of 1-100, colors that are below 50 tend to absorb light and are a bit heavier/darker feeling. Colors that are above 50 tend to be brighter colors that reflect light back into the space, adding a nice energy and vibrancy, and even a feeling of more space. Most of today’s most popular greys sit between 50 and 60 on the LRV scale.
Here are some colors that are strong contenders at the moment. None of these photos are mine, but were found on various websites where other people were also obsessing about the perfect shade of grey. Apparently we are legion!
Sherwin Williams Repose Gray is described as having a gray base with a subtle brown undertone. It also has a faint touch of purple. This color has an LRV of 60, which means it will bring a little light into the room, and might even make it feel a little larger. It is my current front-runner, though that tends to change day by day.
Just to help compare the previous two colors, here’s a photo showing Agreeable Grey and Repose Grey side by side. Repose definitely looks more grey to me. Agreeable Grey looks a little warmer to me. But Repose seems to have a bit more ‘pop’ against whatever the trim is that’s in this photo.
Sherwin Williams Sea Salt has a mix of blue, green and gray. With an LRV of 64 it will reflect some decent light into the room. And, come on, Sea Salt just SOUNDS like the perfect paint color for a beach house, doesn’t it? Though I’m really drawn to this light, lovely color, I’m just a little afraid that the slightly green tone might be too much for the entire house. But maybe it would be nice in the master bath?
Benjamin Moore Moonshine has an LRV of 67, so it is the lightest of the colors I am currently considering. I LOVE the light it seems to bring into a space. It still seems to have a decent contrast to white trim, which is also good.
However, this is a Benjamin Moore color, not a Sherwin Williams. Our contractor is going to be using Sherwin Williams paint. I have heard from people that paint companies can match colors from other companies, but what I’ve also heard is that the colors rarely (never?) end up being an exact match. And I have spent enough time pondering this paint question that I really think I want an exact match.
The next color is also a Benjamin Moore color, called Edgecomb Grey. It leans more toward beige, like a different, very popular grey called Revere Pewter. But it is quite a bit lighter than Revere Pewter, with a LRV of of 63.
The final color that is a strong contender in my mind is a lighter Sherwin Williams grey called On The Rocks. Just like Edgecomb Grey, its LRV is also 63– definitely one of the lightest in the bunch, yet still (I think) has a decent contrast to white. Since there are many dark days on the rainy Oregon coast, I am thinking this lighter grey might be a good one to consider as well.
So which color would you vote for?