1.13.2012

the difference between gray, grey, warm grey, beige, greige, and taupe





Yesterday, I was speaking to a client about the difference between grey, greige, beige and taupe.

It's a conversation I have A LOT!

 I thought perhaps a post about how I explain it to my clients
would be helpful to sort through these terms more easily,
and so here we are :)








First off, for our purposes,
gray (American spelling) and grey (Canada, the UK and Australia) are the same thing.
Just like color (American) and colour (Canada, UK and Australia).
In some technical circles, gray would describe only the grays from the grayscale,
but we're not all that fancy here at 10 Rooms, are we?!
I'm trying to make this simpler, not more difficult...







Let's just start off by saying true grey is any mixture of black and white.
That means that black, white and grey are the only true neutrals.







That said, when we are discussing colour, 
we generally include more than just those colours.

Once pigment is added to a mixture of black and white (grey),
it actually becomes a colour,
although the undertone may be almost imperceptible to the eye.






Therefore, grey, as we know it, can actually have any undertone,
but only purple, green or blue can be added in larger quantities 
for the colour to retain it's title as grey, because these will all produce cool tones.

Are you asleep yet?!!

Lets' define grey as 
black + white = grey
or
black + white + green/blue/purple = grey.






Sound good?


Now let's head into the beige territory.

Beige basically describes the umpteen versions of light brown.
To make brown you add complements from the colour wheel.






When you add complements,
what you are actually adding are all the primaries together in varying amounts.

Blue + orange
is actually
blue + yellow & red.

Yellow + purple
is actually 
yellow + blue & red.

Red + green
is actually
red + yellow & blue.






That is why adding complements always makes a brown,
and why adding different complements creates different browns, 
usually ones that are predominantly yellow, red, or occasionally orange.









So, we know beige contains some red and some yellow, and some blue,
but what else is in it?

White.
White lightens up your brown to beige.

So lets define beige as

white + red & or yellow + a little blue = beige.






So where does greige fit in?

To grey down beige, you simply add black, because the white is already present.

Let's define greige as 

white + black + red & or yellow + perhaps a little blue = greige





Yes, that would be the entire colour wheel!

That's quite a colour-techy way to look at things, 
but I think it's helpful to understand the way colours interact,
and then it all makes sense, doesn't it?


SO -


 when you're looking at a colour, and trying to determine what it actually is,
you need to look at the subtle undertones.

If it's cool, with a blue, purple, or green tint, it's a grey.
(I wrote a post about choosing the right grey, here)





If it's warm, with a red, orange or yellow undertone visible, it's a beige.







And if it's warm, but contains black, it's a greige (or as so many people say, a warm grey)




source 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 10 11 12 13 14 15 16



Does that makes sense, lovelies?



If you have more questions, please leave them in the comments, and I will respond tout de suite - x

Happy friday... hope your weekend is filled with love and laughs...








oh - and taupe?
That's just a fancy way of describing a red-based beige,
with a little green thrown in,
so that what you end up with is a slight dirty pinky-beige.
It's not actually a group of colours, but different variations of the same mix.












Pin It Now!

81 comments:

Mel said...

What a brilliant post! I'll have to refer to it for my "not-so-colour savvy" friend.

Have a great weekend.

heather (love your space) said...

I love, love, love when you do these excellent color posts--thank you! Often I find I understand some of these things but can't explain them so well. Thanks for giving us the words (and charts!)

Heather

Mosaicology said...

Excellent work! I love both grey and beige!

Giulia said...

Great post. Love the technical parts. I think my main colour is grey as I find it reads purple sometimes, but it also doesn't feel cold...mhhh. It's BM Thunder...

Jo @ In Corners of My Mind said...

I may have to share this with my hubby so he finally understands when I say a neutral has 'too much of a yellow undertone',or 'there's too much pink in it'. He never understands and thinks I'm crazy...this could prove I'm not! Thanks!

Kerry @ Design du Monde said...

Well stated.

Wendi @ Classic Chic Home said...

Excellent post! This one's going in my colour file tout de suite!
Have a lovely evening, Anne-Marie!
~ Wendi ~

Beatrice @ becado.blogspot.com said...

Great post! This was so insightful. I love both grey and beige and greige, so loved your post.

NK: Style-ING w/ Children said...

great techy post. really, not TOO techy :) exactly what, me, an amateur needs :)

Brittany {Gallery No. Eight} said...

That was actually really interesting!!! I knew grey had undertones, but I never would have thought of it like that! Fabulous post lady!! And Happy Weekend!!! xo

homeawaits said...

Truly wonderful, thanks for the details and visuals!

EveandEb said...

I love the bedroom room, it reminds me of a gray linen.

Tatiana Doria said...

Wooow!!! this is very very helpful indeed!!
Great post. I think it will really help me with my clients too!
It has been a perfect explanation, to take into consideration when choosing colors for any room.
Thank you very much!

www.tatianadoria.blogspot.com

MITICA FASHION ILLUSTRATIONS said...

Oooh wooow amazing post!!! love it!!

Follow you!! :)

Kim@Chattafabulous said...

Wow, and I thought taupe and greige were the same thing. Thanks for the lesson!

Lisha said...

Yay! I really like the way you clearly explain such color details. Sometimes I get confused, oh well, who isn't? :) Love to use these colors and name them right, too.

e t e r n a l i c o n s said...

Love this long post. Very educational and one I'll be refering to on numerous occassions!
KL

Kim Davies Inspired Lines said...

This is a fantastic post, Anne-Marie! Thank you for sharing this. A really concise explanation.

essays said...

Excellent work! I love both grey and beige!

Rachael said...

Thanks for this info! It's very helpful! I recently bought a "mis-tint" 5 gallon bucket of paint for an extremely low price. It looked like a beige on the top, but after painting two small rooms with it I realize it is too pink! I can't afford to buy any other paint and I have about 3-4 gallons left. What can I do to fix the problem. Could I add a quart of black paint to make it a greige? I appreciate your help!!

Anonymous said...

Can you list the colors in the paint cans used in the photo. (especially those in the larger square samples in the bottom of the photo.)thanks!

Jennifer BNHblog said...

This was a really neat post! Thank you so much for putting it together. I am very much into nominalism and color theory but it's hard to find new material on the latter, especially material that is applicable to decorating!

hayda said...

That is very good comment you shared.Thank you so much that for you shared those things with us.Im wishing you to carry on with ur achivments.All the best.
chat Mirc indir Sohbet Siteleri

SylviaAnn said...

I feel so validated! You have no idea how many 'discussions' I've had with my husband over gray or beige paint options. He is SO getting a link to this post in his in-box!

Faye said...

Thank you! I learned a lot.

Anonymous said...

Great post! I have been in love with gray for some time now.

KellyL said...

This is so helpful - thank you!

Phoenix Patio Covers said...

Decent blog..thanks for sharing. If you ever you need Patio Covers, be sure to visit Adobe Awning...these guys did me right. I usually get ripped off when hunting for a Phoenix Patio Cover company to work on my home improvement.

Trinityserviceshvac said...

Hope to learning a lot and have a pleasant experience here!Thanks for post.
regards
Air Cleaner Purifier New Orleans

Vanessa Torres said...

Who makes the color swatches above? I really like a color (elephant breath) and would like to purchase one. Can you provide the name? Thank you

Anne-Marie @ 10 Rooms said...

Hi Mel - Elephant's Breath is from Farrow and Ball - here is a link:
http://us.farrow-ball.com/elephant's-breath/colours/fcp-product/100229

vender oro said...

Reasonable weblog..thanks for discussing. If you ever you need Terrace Includes, be sure to check out Adobe Canopy...these people did me right. I usually get attractive off when tracking for a Arizona Terrace Protect organization to perform on my do it yourself.

HawksEye said...

This is a excellent write-up created for this particular topic. I would weblink it returning to your web page though. I was thinking if I could use this write-up on my web page.
tubal reversal

nutricionista barcelona said...

Reasonable weblog..thanks for discussing. If you ever you need Terrace Includes, be sure to check out Adobe Canopy...these people did me right. I usually get attractive off when tracking for a Arizona Terrace Protect organization to perform on my do it yourself.

Hunterheatandair said...

It was very nice explanation. great for it.
regards
AC Repair Ardmore

Allie Gunter said...

I love that bedroom with the amazing headboard. Great blog :)

--Allie
http://lunavida23.blogspot.com/

Anonymous said...

I painted walls using sherwin Williams. Stonelion #7505. I have brown leather furniture. Completely lost as to what color/colors for curtains. And solid area rug color or printed? I am thinking solid rug printed curtains.

Anonymous said...

Love this, extremely helpful in trying to pick a paint color. Do you have a favorite go-to greige color? Any tips would help.
Thank you,
Laurie Needs Greige Paint

Bethany [at] Powell Brower Home said...

this was a sensational post. id like to refer people to it! thank YOU :)

Brittany said...

Great post!! There's so many variations of 'griege' it's hard to keep them straight sometimes aha

Helen Morales Escosora said...

You are so brilliant, very well explained, especially like me who gets confused of all those shades of colors. Lately I'm loving all grays and beiges colors, this is very helpful for my home improvements projects and update my fashion wardrobe too.
Thanks a lot and more power!!!

welivebetter.com said...

I really appreciate your post and you explain each and every point very well.Thanks for sharing this information.And I’ll love to read your next post too

welivebetter.com said...

We are a group of volunteers and starting a new scheme in our community. Your site provided us with valuable information to work on. You’ve done a formidable job and our entire community will be thankful to you.
welivebetter.com

vike ay said...

Thanks for taking the time to discuss this, I feel strongly about it and love learning more on this topic. If possible, as you gain expertise, would you mind updating your blog with more information? It is extremely helpful for me.buy an essay

vike ay said...

The quality is simply wonderful and no doubt you are expert in this area. I would always check out your new entry. Thank you very much and please keep up the good work.buy an essay

Joni2011 said...

Well, this article really help. Thanks a lot.

Jen said...

Thank you! This was really helpful for explaining beiges. Most of the time I can tell if it is yellow or pink or green based, but I'm a bit stumped on Sherwin Williams China Doll. Any thoughts?
Thanks again for your insights!

Catherine Montano said...

Thank you so much! what a fantastic post, we are hoping to paint our home and have been so overwhelmed by the choices, after browsing the web for inspiration i came across your blog and I'm hooked! I feel so enlightened.

Thanks again

Carrie LaFay said...

This post saved me from going crazy! I have been looking for this explanation everywhere. Thank you! I am still confused on if I can use "greige" and grey in the same house and it will still flow? Also, if I have "greige" walls, if I should stick to cool or warm accent color walls? So much to consider!

Debbie Dearie said...

Hi there
Great info..... Can you advise what colour is in the picture of the bedroom with the big brown wooden bed, next to the picture if the door knocker???

Anonymous said...

I love this, so informative. Im having an awful time getting paint to match my new wall paper, it is pewter with grey and silver script writing through it, I bought they dove grey suggested as a match but it is too dark for my room. Could you suggest a dulex or crown colour which would go? Thanks

video bong da said...

Thank you! This was really helpful for explaining beiges

Katie Almond said...

Any feedback on mega greige or versatile grey from Sherman Williams? Are those true greiges? I want to have that for the main color in my house.

Anonymous said...

Wow! Great post, very clarifying!

Ummey Rezwana said...



Thanks for sharing such kind of nice and wonderful collection......Nice post Dude keep it up.
I have appreciate with getting lot of good and reliable and legislative information with your post......
Kitchen showrooms Gold Coast
Kitchens Gold Coast
Gold Coast Kitchens

tin bong da said...

http://10rooms.blogspot.nl/2012/01/difference-between-tray-grey-warm-grey.html

yepi online said...

The article you have shared here very awesome. I really like and appreciated your work. I read deeply your article, the points you have mentioned in this article are useful. I must try to follow these points and also share others.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much. You have explained different greys really well. I have just painted our walls in a warm grey and I would like to have a tiled floor. I'm not sure what colour tiles to use. I would like to have some timber furniture. I don't want a cold feeling to the house. Do you have any suggestions?

Thanking you

Jane

Karen said...

Thanks for the great post. I knew this on some level, but your explanation was very clear and easy to understand.

Chang bui thi said...

Great post,Thanks for providing us this great knowledge,Keep it up.
A good blog.
---
Signature:
i like play games juegosjuegos.com | jogos do friv | juegos de matar zombies

Anonymous said...

Can you recommend a nice colour for a really small sitting room? It has one window so its dark, and a black fireplace

Model Kebaya Muslim Modern said...

Wow, incredible weblog layout! How long have you been blogging for? you make running a blog glance easy. The total look of your site is excellent, let alone the content!

friv said...

Great post,Thanks for providing us this great knowledge,Keep it up.
A good blog.
Visit to play games2girls 2 and play game kids games online ! have fun!

Rebecca said...

This was so interesting - thank you. I would really appreciate your advice about a new sofa I just bought for my small but welcoming office. The sofa color was described as gray - and looked gray online - but in reality it's a warm beige. What color pillows could I buy to make it look more gray?
many thanks,
Rebecca

jogosfriv said...

The mixed color or that jogos friv , games for kids

Anonymous said...

If u had been a science teacher at my school I would have got A's...thanks I was a beige girl last decade....now converted to greige....:)

Anonymous said...

Very eloquent.... Thanx a lot....

baixar whatsapp said...

Very nice :) i love it

descargar facebook apk said...

Great! Thanks you.

Property Investment said...

We help to create the perfect set of webpages for you is quite simple.

Airless Spray | SEO Melbourne

iniciar sesion facebook entrar said...

I would like to thank you for the efforts you have made in writing this article.
facebook entrar iniciar sesion
facebook entrar
facebook iniciar sesion
entrar facebook

facebook movel said...

Signature:
download baixar facebook movel, Facebook movel, baixar facebook. Facebook chat, baixar whatsapp, fazer o download baixar whatsapp gratis para Android, iPhone. Últimas Facebook

Duchessofoban said...

Great informative post thank you

Help!, I am struggling to choose my laminate, have light grey green walls, lots of washed beige furniture my previous floor (damaged by flood) matched the walls, so a clean canvas if you like for the rest. It's been discontinued, and can't find another...either too yellow, too white, too much grain..

Is a heavy oak grain going to look busy?

Must I pick up the grey green again or can I go for a Narvik Oak which is white, grey but heavily grained
Which other colours would work?

Hope you can help
Thanks all he way from Cape Town :-)

unblockedgames said...

Great article facebook entrar perfil , facebook entrar login , facebook entrar mi cuenta , unblocked games , unblocked games

Gps Tracker said...

Love it!!
Atap Fiberglass
Cotton Bud
parfum
Pest Control
Anti Rayap

baixar whatsapp plus said...

The richness of color descargar whatsapp plus gratis , baixar whatsapp plus , descargar mobogenie

happy wheels games said...

Great! Thanks for sharing the information. That is very helpful for increasing my knowledge in this field.
pacman
happy wheels
my little pony games
unblocked games
unblockedgames
friv4
kizi4
stunt master hacked

Anh Mai said...

I would like to thank you for your nicely written post
Signature:
Versión en facebook descargar descargar a los países hablan Español: facebook entrar agora , facebook en español descargar , facebook entrar direto agora

games unblocked said...

You’ve written nice post, I am gonna bookmark this page, thanks for info. I actually appreciate your own position and I will be sure to come back here.
Signature:
The place to play all unblocked games online. Here you can find every blocked games such as: unblockedgames , unblocked games happy , unblocked games 77 ,

Merk Parfum Wanita Yang Disukai Pria said...

I think this is among the most significant information for me.And i’m glad reading your article. But want to remark on few general things, The web site style is great, the articles is really nice : D. Good job, cheers

Serviced Apartments London Lady said...

It's really hard to find a good resource on the internet that explains colour theory! But this is fantastic, just what I was looking for!

LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...