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Bathrooms Go Gray

September 12, 2012. Posted by admin to Bathroom Remodeling
Gray can add a lot of color to a room, from cool blue undertones to warm hues with red tones. As a neutral color, it satisfies a wide range of palettes and provides a happy medium between black and white.
Why gray? Neutral, calming, and wide-ranging in tone, gray not only matches everything, but also provides the perfect color scheme when combined with any bright or bold shade. Try contrasting gray with yellow, green, or red, to create a bathroom with a touch of colorful character. At the same time gray can be luxurious, elegant, and regal. Gray easily becomes the neutral colored canvas demanded by contemporary design, providing the perfect backdrop for offsetting brightly colored accents and allowing the design of the room itself to set the tone and style.
Rather than taking the attitude that gray is dull and depressing, the color can be approached as urban, modern, industrial, and even medieval. While ever-adaptable white has been the dominant color in bathrooms for decades, gray provides a similarly universal tone that’s sure to grow with your family and please future homeowners too. As you’ll see in the following bathrooms, gray comes in an endless array of shades and tones. Have you used gray materials in your own interior design schemes? Tell us your favorite shade of gray and where you used it in the comments section at the end of this post.

Many gray bathrooms are still predominately white, allowing gray accents to add both color and texture to the space.

gray bathroom designs

This Case Design/Remodeling bathroom uses the gold colored mirror frame to add color and elegance to the room. The gray detail in the cabinetry, granite vanity top, and marble backsplash with a mosaic tile detail give the space a ton of depth and texture that doesn’t demand a lot of additional color. Silver accessories keep the room neutral and adaptable. Framed black and white photographs provide the perfect décor for this neutral space.

Charcoal and other darker shades of gray can work extremely well in a larger bathroom.

modern gray bathroom

While gray appears to be the dominant color at a glance in this Case Design bathroom, a closer look reveals that this space is equally full of warm colors. The gray slate tiles that cover a majority of surfaces in the room are full of rusty red and brown tones, while the burnt sienna vanity and beige sink, counter, and bathtub deck match the tile accents rather than the gray tones to help warm up the room. The off-white window casing, bathtub, and grout further brighten the space.

While darker gray shades like charcoal aren’t often the color of choice in a small bathroom or powder room, they can make a bold statement and provide elements of style and contrast.

grey bathroom ideas

Here crisp, white subway tiles offset a traditional black and white floor and solid charcoal walls. While charcoal is often considered to be more black than gray, it’s gray enough to be used in a small space, while true black is simply too dark to be a dominant color in most interior design schemes. Image courtesy of Tyler Grace

A similarly designed space takes an entirely different direction simply by using a different shade of gray.

grey bathroom

This bathroom shows that sometimes gray is the only hint of color a room needs. The gray and white color scheme allows the elegant vanity mirror to become the centerpiece of the bathroom. Image courtesy of by Brockman, Forbes, and Glasgow Architecture and Design

grey bathrooms

This Case Design powder room extends the hallway wainscot and floor tiles into the bathroom to create a neutral space with green undertones and an elegantly detailed design.

Design tip: Because gray matches everything, it combines perfectly in the bathroom with silver, brass, pewter, or even black accessories. In a gray bathroom, accessories work well to contrast gray tones while matching or highlighting other accent colors in the room.
Ceramic, porcelain, and natural stone tiles come in endless shades of gray. Since these materials are common in bathrooms, it makes sense that gray tones are making their way into the bathroom too, regardless of the space’s design style.

White subway tiles set in gray grout leave this room looking predominantly white, even against the charcoal riverstone floor. This room has so much aesthetic texture that it doesn’t need a lot of color or extra adornment. Image courtesy of Miller and Wright Architects

This bathroom similarly creates depth and texture by setting charcoal subway tiles against white grout. The gray and white mosaic floor tiles combined with marble accents add lighter shades of gray to the space without drawing too much attention away from the accent wall. Image courtesy of Urrutia Design

When it comes to both tile and wall color, there are so many shades of gray available that there’s sure to be the perfect gray out there for everyone.

Is this bathroom blue or gray? In many spaces the shade of gray you experience depends on the time of day and lighting. This bathroom uses gray to create a neutral space with a hint of color. Image courtesy of Great Neighborhood Homes


Wainscot tiling is the perfect design element in the bathroom. It makes smaller spaces look bigger and adds elements of texture and detail. This bathroom integrates contrasting natural tones to create a calming, neutral space. Image courtesy of BiglarKinyan Design Partnership

Charcoal is a very popular shade of gray, as we’ve seen in many of our gray bathroom examples. One advantage of charcoal is that it both blends and contrasts extremely well with so many other shades of gray.

The charcoal floor and vanity top against lighter shades of gray and white make this room’s turquoise accent pieces pop. A black and white palette with plenty of horizontal and vertical lines becomes the perfect choice for a contemporary bathroom design. Image courtesy of Susan Teare

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  • By interior design on November 16, 2012 at 12:05 pm | #  | Reply

    Pretty! This has been an incredibly wonderful post.

    Thanks for supplying these details.

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  • By Wendell on April 9, 2013 at 12:16 am | #  | Reply

    Appreciate this post. Let me try it out.

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