Black and White and Gray all Over

We started our quest for the perfect dark gray the other day by sticking a bunch of gray paint chips on the wall, stepping back and eliminating the ones that didn't look right that night or the next morning. Then we went off to the Depot and picked up at least fifty more chips, including all those that you guys suggested we try.

We had two goals: first to find a darker below-the-chair-rail color for the dining room; and second to find a light gray for the kitchen that would look truly gray in all lights, before we ventured out for our big Valentine's date to the tile store.Yes, we're tile shopping for Valentine's day this year, it should be fun.

Before we could really tell which gray paint chips were the "best" gray we knew we had to paint a section of trim from the original yellowish-white to the ultra bright white that we used for the sun room/office and in the basement den that we intend to eventually use everywhere in the house. So at 8pm the other night I grabbed our short, cutting-in brush and the trim paint and painted a section of chair rail.
And then while a jet-lagged S was asleep on the couch, I kept going. And going, until I finished painting all the trim in the dining room and the kitchen, including the kitchen door.

And then a funny thing happened, the Ice Cube Silver gray above the bright white chair rail didn't look so baby blue anymore. It was more like a skeptical "hmm, that looks a little more gray than usual."  It also meant we were able to narrow down the 100+ paint chips to a more reasonable number.
We narrowed those choices down further and then ventured out for some actual paint samples, which we're going to live with for a couple of days so we can see them in a few different lights. We want the dark gray to help balance out the black frames around the bright art in the dining room, so S held one of the prints above the two paint samples while I stepped back to analyze.
I'm not 100% sold on either of the two grays (BM Steel Wool (l) and Timber Wolf (r)) and want to try BM Pewter and Glidden's seal gray.

But what we area sold on is a pale gray for the kitchen! After seeing how the Iced Cube Silver looked in the dining room with the new bright white trim, we decided to paint a swatch in the kitchen. Then when I was digging through our paint collection I came across the gray that we used in our bed room (Glidden Shaded Ice, color matched to a Behr paint), which I've said to S a few times is what I envisioned when I said I wanted to paint the main living areas the palest of grays. And it turns out, it is the right palest gray for the kitchen. So we're painting the kitchen.. And that's one shade of gray resolved.

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  1. Have you tried Porpoise by BEHR? We have it in our bedroom, and I find it is a true grey as opposed to some of the greys we have had before (Manhattan Mist for example, which had purple undertones).

    All the best though! Looks good thus far. (first time poster, found you through YHL's site).

  2. I think my favorite is the Timber Wolf. I have a Glidden Seal Grey paint chip at home too - it'll be interesting to see a swatch of it on your wall. Happy color hunting!

  3. I agree with your choice. Looking forward to seeing the end result.

  4. Grey is the HOT color right now - we just did our bathroom and 1/2 my office

  5. Mmmmm, Im ADDICTED to gray right now :0) We're using Valspar Dolphin Cove in our living room

  6. Anonymous3/23/2012

    What trim color did you select with shaded ice? I chose that color for my daughter's room. Thanks!


    1. We used ice cube silver for the walls and an ultra bright white for the trim. I love the way it looks!


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