21 Ways to Decorate with Gray Walls That Are Anything But Boring

Kitchen with wooden dining set and white cabinets
Photo: Ray Kachatorian

A mix between black and white, gray is by definition a neutral. But its varying shades, from light dove to dark charcoal, make gray as versatile as any color. These inspiring interiors demonstrate what to do with gray walls, along with how to decorate with gray as an accent color, using accessories, furniture, fabrics, and more.

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Gray Bedroom Decorating

gray bedroom with bold ikat patterned textiles
Stacey Brandford

When decorating with gray, a colorful mix of patterns can enliven a neutral scheme, as in this gray bedroom. An almost white shade of gray on the walls sets the tone for the accents, including the upholstered bed, coverlet, and curtains. Patterned sheets and pillows introduce pops of pink, egg-yolk yellow, and blue to add personality.

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Gray Kitchen Colors

Kitchen with wooden floors and gray cabinets
Panichgul Studios, Inc

Gray is sophisticated and timeless, making it an excellent choice for more permanent design elements like kitchen cabinets. In gray kitchens, contrast is key to creating visual interest and dimension. Here, marble countertops, stainless steel appliances, and dove gray cabinetry set a cool tone, while brass and copper accents pair with honey-toned wood to warm up the palette. The mix of textures and color temperatures forms an inviting, balanced look.

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Gray Bathroom Decor Ideas

bathroom with gray vanity and white countertops
Jessica Delaney Photography, LLC

Subway tile walls and a gray vanity combine to create a crisp, clean aesthetic in this bathroom. Shiny brass hardware and light fixtures counteract the cool tone of the gray paint. Decorative mirrors with cobalt blue frames provide a fun accent color.

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Cheerful Gray Walls

Dining area with gray walls and wicker chairs
Robert Brinson

These storm-cloud gray walls don't look a bit dreary, thanks to the white moldings, chairs, and a woven shade. The cool hues are balanced with warm neutrals introduced in the wood table, cane chair, and woven area rug. Splashes of celadon and coral add a cheery note to the neutral dining room.

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Contemporary Gray Dining Area

Kitchen with wooden dining set and white cabinets
Ray Kachatorian

Pebble-gray walls keep this dining nook warm and cozy. Contemporary wood furniture, hardwood floors, and taupe tile on the bar's backsplash draw out the warm undertones of the gray walls for an overall look that's inviting, not sterile.

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Decorating with Gray and Neutrals

Neutral color palettes can be just as interesting as more colorful combinations. The key is to vary shades, intensities, and textures to add depth and richness. Follow these tips on decorating with neutrals to make sure your gray color scheme doesn't fall flat.

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Gray Entryway Decorating

Nook with gray cabinet and decorative mirror
Robert Brinson

A sunburst mirror in the entrance to this home is paired with a sleek gray console with matching gold knobs. The dove-gray color of the console lets the mirror remain the focal point. Simple accessories give the entry a lived-in look without being cluttered.

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Gray Bedroom Wallpaper

Bedroom with pink and white décor and gray textured walls
Emily Followill

The woven gray wallpaper in this bedroom gives the walls a dose of texture and pattern. A fuchsia headboard, throw pillows, and comforter bring life and color to the room in a subtle, reserved manner. The gray striped area rug adds another layer of pattern to the room, contributing to the dynamic look.

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Dark Gray Wall Ideas

Dining area with dark gray walls and dining set
Nathan Kirkman

Decorative moldings on these charcoal gray walls add an architectural element to the dining room. The tone-on-tone approach ensures the effect isn't overbearing. A rustic dining table makes the room feel less formal and more relaxed. The chandelier and oval-back chairs add an elegant touch, while the white ceiling creates light within the room, so it doesn't feel too dark.

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Decorating with a Gray Sofa

gray living room velvet sofa
David A Land

Light gray walls in this living room help balance the bright palette of pink and blue throughout. The couch is many shades darker than the walls, so it stands out. Accent chairs and accessories continue the color scheme throughout the space.

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Serene Gray Bedroom

Bedroom with white bedding and rug
Alec Hemer

To achieve a soothing, relaxed look, opt for a brown-tinged shade of gray. The walls and ceiling of this bedroom are painted in gray with a hint of beige. The undertone softens the gray, and the hue almost perfectly matches the linen headboard. Use crisp white linens and just a sprinkling of colorful accents to keep the hue from looking dingy.

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Striped Gray Walls

Living room with gray and white striped walls
Kim Cornelison

Dress up a room with gray stripes for a fresh, energized look. For a more graphic paint treatment, use hues with a stronger contrast, such as a medium gray and pure white. The color in this family room comes from the children's artwork and bright pillows in orange and citron, which lend a modern look to neutrals like gray.

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Mix-and-Match Gray Decor

Dining area with dining set, pink couch, and gray walls
John Bessler

When using a neutral color palette, blending styles is one way to bring visual interest to a room. Texture also plays a key role in the success of a neutral scheme. In this dining room, an X-base farmhouse-style table is paired with casual white director's chairs. Glossy floors and a sculptural light fixture offer a more contemporary look. Although the gray walls have cooler undertones, the abundance of natural light ensures the room doesn't feel dreary, and the pink sofa adds a splash of personality and color.

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Natural Gray Color Scheme

Sitting area with bird artwork and wooden cabinet
Laura Moss

A barely-gray wall is the perfect backdrop for these waterfowl drawings. While a more dramatic hue might have added dimension, the gray background gently blends with the art for a museum-like display. For continuity, the soft gray repeats through the space on the chair, lamp, and even on the blonde wood flooring, which has a gray wash. Touches of black on the dresser, in a few of the drawings, and in the chair's stripe ground the space.

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Gray Tile Backsplash

Kitchen with white cabinets and dark blue backsplash
Kritsada Panichgul

Gray is the perfect bridge between black and white and can be used to soften the high contrast. In this kitchen, a dark gray backsplash in variegated tones stands in the middle ground between the black soapstone countertops and white cabinetry. Crystal knobs and stainless steel drawer pulls add a hint of sparkle and glitz.

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Gray and White Kitchen

Bar seating in kitchen in white and gray
Jay Wilde

Break up large expanses of white with gray to create visual interest while maintaining a clean, neutral aesthetic. In this kitchen, a white island would have been lost against the white cabinetry and moldings. A medium-tone gray provides the right amount of contrast, and the gray paint pairs beautifully with dark hardwood floors.

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Luxurious Gray Bathroom

Bathroom with dark gray walls and wooden cabinets
Beth Singer Photographer Inc

The highlight of this bathroom is the glittering gray tile. Varying sizes of tiles are used within the bathroom to create a dynamic, flowing look. The purple-gray wall picks up slight lavender tones in the tiles behind the sink.

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Neutral Gray Palette

Gray and white themed bedroom
Robert Brinson

A subdued palette of neutrals keeps this primary bedroom peaceful. Barely-there dove gray covers the walls, while stone gray adds depth to the headboard treatments and bed upholstery. A small-scale desk serves as a nightstand for the shared space. Warm hues come from an orange rattan stool, small bedside bench, and desktop flowers.

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Gray Living Room Ideas

Living room with patterned chairs and textured walls
Robert Brinson

Grass-cloth walls bring a natural element into this living room, but the gray undertones in the paper up the sophistication factor. The multitone walls pair well with the dark gray couch and patterned chairs in the same shade of gray. Lemon yellow and Kelly green accents are reminiscent of a garden, bringing life and energy into the room.

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Charcoal Gray Bedroom

Bedroom with dark gray walls and gold and blue accents
Lauren Rubinstein

This gray bedroom shows how different shades can be used to create a soothing, sophisticated space. The barely-there gray bedding feels refreshing when paired with charcoal and pale yellow accent pillows. The yellow is picked up again in the patterned footstools and accessories on the side tables. A reflective sheen gives life to dark gray walls.

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Dark Gray Living Room Walls

Living room with dark gray walls and fireplace
Tria Giovan

The dark gray walls add drama to this living room. Inspired by the bark on the dense trees that surround the home, the color lets the wood side table and picture frames stand out. Other elements, such as the metallic garden stool and ottoman, bring out the walls' cool undertones. This room is a mixture of styles that all work together, thanks to the versatile wall hue.

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