Grey & green living room ideas from FibreGuard
Grey and green are two of our favourite colours, but they're not always easy to combine. Greys can be too cool, while greens can be too bright. Luckily, there are some ways that you can create a grey and green living room that works. In this article we look at creating colour palettes and playing with textures and pile heights in your living room upholstery fabric to create a space that is really special.
In praise of colour in living rooms
When choosing a colour for your living room walls, why not splash out and choose something other than the standard shade of white or off-white.
The popularity of palm and banana leaf prints as decor, along with plants in general — makes it only natural that green in all its glory is having a major moment. If you're open to living room furnishings in fabulous green tones, that's another option.
Karen Haller, the world's leading expert in applied colour psychology and author of The Little Book of Colour, says: ‘Green falls in the middle of the colour spectrum, and the eye requires very little to no adjustment to be able to see it. It is, therefore, a very restful colour for us, and indicative of balance and harmony.’
And if the whole "bring the colours of outdoors inside" trend intrigues you, then this might be an especially good choice!
Related read: Dopamine decor: how to design a joyful home
Create a grey green colour palette for your living room in 5 steps
Here are some helpful tips for creating a simple colour palette that works for your living room.
- First, let’s look at the colour properties of grey and green. Grey has a cool undertone, while green has a warm undertone. Grey has a calming effect on the eye, while green is uplifting.
- Then, consider the space. A large room can handle more colours than a small one. It's easier for the eye to take in multiple shades when there's plenty of space for them all.
- Get started with some neutral colours, and from there you can work in some grey and green to create a cohesive colour palette for your living room. This neutral base layer can be created by mixing different shades of grey and beige or even brown tones. You could also consider using black or white if you prefer a more minimalist look. Pro tip: Using muted, complementary colours will ensure that none of the colours "fights" with the others.
- Try out a wide variety of shades. For example, you could go for a light shade of grey such as dove or oyster with a deeper shade of green such as olive or sage; or you could use a darker shade such as slate with brighter tones such as lime or a light teal.
- Can’t decide? Combine grey and green! Described as ‘an amalgamation of grey, green and blue-y brown, this shade has a moody, sophisticated feel and adds great depth to interiors,’ by Francesca Wezel of Francesca’s Paints, it’s a real winner. We’re fans of Farrow & Ball's French Grey in particular, as it’s a warmer tone between traditional greys and greens that hits all the right notes.
A light, airy living room balances a thyme green FibreGuard sofa with grey walls
When combined, grey and green can create a relaxing but gentle stimulating living room. They’re both available in neutral variants and colours, so they're perfect for creating a calm, relaxing atmosphere, if that’s your style.
Our first living room example has this bright and airy feel thanks to its big plate glass window looking out into the quiet forest beyond. The designers have extended this by pairing grey walls with a flatwoven textured upholstery fabric in a muted thyme green. Opting for this colour combination and choosing light wooden floors help keep any living room light and airy, regardless of whether it comes with a quiet forest attached or not!
An industrial living room warmed up by green FibreGuard velvet
Do you prefer cool or warm greys? Like in this FibreGuard example, for the shades of grey that you like best: anything from very light, subtle tones to dark charcoal blacks and almost black.
The interior designers in this case decided to layer grey on grey to create depth in this otherwise quite simple living room. The sometimes sterile ‘industrial’ feel is beautifully offset here by their use of an elegant FibreGuard velvet – our best-selling velvet ever, in fact – in earthy shades of sage green and pine green.
Beginning with a neutral shade like grey is the perfect base for decorating, and then choose whatever shades of green you like: emerald, mint or sage—it all depends on your taste.
This room really pops because of the metallic accents, rounded organic forms and small touches of ochre and yellow in the throw pillows and artwork.
A wabi-sabi ski chalet living room in grey and green
This grey and green living room is really stands out from the crowd thanks to its textures. Let’s single them out and see how they’re paired together and work off each other:
- The smooth stone coffee table with rough, earthenware vases.
- The matte grey concrete floor and finishings offset by the nubby texture and flaxen colour of the jute rug.
- The textured upholstery, in FibreGuard, providing a solid foundation of colour in emerald and olive-green tones.
We have so many texture ideas to add a deep yet chic feel into grey and green living rooms. For example, you could have a soft velvet sofa (always a classic and luxurious texture in upholstery) paired with a neutral area rug with a low pile …and then add a statement piece like a bouclé accent chair that has much more energy, texture-wise.
‘Verdigris green works best with softer tones of clay white and chalk grey and a light, natural floor,’ says Justyna Korczynska, senior designer at Crown Paints.
Or, instead of having all flat-weave cushions on one armchair, try using some that have more texture and pattern to add interest to your space.
Related read: Wabi-sabi: the stress-free design style we need
A living room that layers green on green…with a hint of grey
When you're choosing the colours for your room, it's important to use similar shades of the same colour. For example, if you have a blue sofa and want to add some green into your room, choose shades like teal or turquoise instead of bright green. This will create a cohesive look that doesn't seem too jarring or out of place when viewed together.
You can also use different tones of grey and green in this way--especially if there are other colours in the space as well (such as red). You'll want to make sure that all of these tones work well together though; so for example, if there is already a lot going on with browns/blues/reds then try avoiding adding in whites as well because this would just make things too busy.
Think about clashing elements
You can incorporate greys and greens into your living room without too much hassle, as long as you think carefully about the elements that might clash.
The first step to creating a grey and green living room is choosing the right colours for your walls and flooring. Grey is a colour that works well with many others, but it does not work well with greens or blues because they clash with each other.
For example: If you were looking at painting your wall green, then it would look terrible if there was already grey in the room--because those two colours would clash together visually! So, when choosing colours for walls or floors (or even furniture), keep this rule in mind: The lighter shade should always go behind darker objects; otherwise, they will look too harsh against one another.
Related read: 6 books for using colour in interior design
Let’s work together
As you can see, there are many ways to incorporate greys and greens in your living room. You just need to think carefully about which elements might clash, and how best to balance them out. We hope this article has helped you on your way.
The versatility of FibreGuard fabrics empowers interior design professionals to easily achieve any interior styling, with the added extras that make our performance furnishing fabrics special. Our wide selection of colours and textures effortlessly create any mood or atmosphere.We’re passionate about supporting design experts in all stages of their projects.
We’re proud that design professionals specify our performance fabrics globally, elevating their projects to meet the diverse needs of their clients, all while enjoying the practical benefits of stain-resistant and easy-to-clean FibreGuard fabrics.