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Beige: The New (and Old) Gray

Believe it or not, beige is back in town. And we have a feeling it’s going to stay for a while…

Now, don’t get this confused with the beige wall color that took over in the late 90’s and early 00’s– this beige has matured and simplified and shifted. Yes, there are loads of different beiges out there, and each one has it’s place. But remember how easy it was decorating with beige, though?

Come along for the ride as we explore this modern classic color in some new light… and trends!

Note the brass accent piece on the credenza juxtaposed next to the black metal drapery rods.

What we’re seeing in design today differs from days of old when beige first made its grand entrance. Instead of monotonously rich color palettes, spaces that feature contrasting colors and materials truly leave a lasting effect. While the One-Color-Everywhere method simplified decorating, there wasn’t much dimension from room to room. Now we’re using a variety of neutrals throughout the home.

Featuring: Beige

Feature walls are also much more commonplace now. This one design element creates a modern vibe for the seemingly passé color trend. Rather than leaving all four walls the same, try out a complementing color on a feature wall.

Pro tip: Feature walls don’t always have to be painted. You can use wood paneling or Shiplap, wallpaper or faux finishing, as long as it complements the rest of the room!

In the pictures above, we have two feature walls in different areas of the home. The first shows a breakfast nook inlaid with diagonal planks. This makes a great accent because 1) it doesn’t take up the whole wall and 2) it looks natural. It looks like there should be something on that bench wall. It’s not over the top or out of place. Accenting a feature wall just for the sake of doing it isn’t always the best solution, but when done right, it simply belongs. Another example of this theory is the living room picture above. Your focus is already on that fireplace wall. Pairing the fireplace with black walls and shelves gives it that much more dimension without drawing any negative attention.

When you do it right, it’s not an accent wall.

— Joanna Gaines


Now, back to beige. The real reason we’re all here, right? There are so many different beiges out there. Warm and cool, light and dark, subtle and bold, etc… When designing a space with a specific style in mind, you narrow down your color options. And if you’ve already decided to use a warm neutral, then your choices are even fewer.

That’s a good thing.

We know how overwhelming choosing colors can be, whether it’s paint colors, furniture, or accent decor. We’ve put together some cheat sheets to help you along with color selections, specifically for beiges.

With these guides to beige, you will be able to tackle any decor challenge you face using this revamped neutral.

Beige Design Reference

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