Going Gray

Dallas homes get marvelous makeovers in new hot neutral


Dallas interior design goes gray in Oak Lawn
Photo by Michael Hunter
Rawlins redo
Photo by Michael Hunter
Rawlins redo
Photo by Michael Hunter
Dallas interior design goes gray
Photo by Michael Hunter
Lakewood redo
Photo by Michael Hunter
Dallas interior design goes gray in Highland Park
Photo by Michael Hunter
Highland Park redo
Photo by Michael Hunter
Highland Park redo
Photo by Michael Hunter
Highland Park redo
Photo by Michael Hunter

There are not quite fifty shades of it in the color wheel, but there are plenty of grays to choose from when it comes to contemporary home design. The color trend is going strong in Dallas, so we asked Traci Connell of Traci Connell Interiors to weigh in on the new neutral obsession.

In practice, the gray treatment can give smaller spaces more room to breathe, as in this Oak Lawn condo on Rawlins Street. The goal was to create a fluidity between comfort and style that’s suitable for both relaxing and working from home.

Using a well-balanced color scheme — gray, turquoise, black and white — the design seems to revolve around two eye-catching pieces of artwork that ground contemporary details in a comfortable space.

For modern interiors, Connell suggests experimenting with a veritable rainbow of tones, including fuchsia, indigo, lavender, turquoise (as shown here) and slate blue.

“Although gray offers a serene feel, our goal is that it does not appear sterile but offers a sense of cleanliness,” Connell notes. “By adding a pop of color, you can achieve both goals.”

Gray is a versatile hue. Not many colors will clash with gray, although Connell suggests staying away from browns and tans.

Here, eclectic modern art allows gray to act as a subtle accent while pops of color get the most attention.

A house in Lakewood takes a more masculine approach with a simple black-and-gray color palette and shiny metallic finishes. The effect is sleek and updated, as gray appears in geometric patterned pillows, upholstered chair cubes and window treatments.

This Lakewood home uses abstract art with metallic finishes to maintain a masculine effect. A black-and-white tweed upholstery reads as charcoal.

According to Connell, gray actually started becoming popular about five years ago. But many conventional homeowners have been slow to make the transition from tans as neutrals to grays. 

“In traditional spaces, we recommend gray with warm undertones, which seem to be a better comfort level for those clients,” Connell says. This approach can maintain a timeless feel, especially when combined with classic details and clean colors such as whites and yellows.

A 1930s Highland Park home was brought up to date with clean gray touches throughout the house. The design’s minimalist lines, blue-gray walls, gray fabrics and silver metallic accessories make for airy yet cozy living spaces.

Silver framed mirrors reflect light to capitalize upon windows.

To re-create these visual effects, Connell says to begin with a soft gray paint palette, select fabrics with a lighter feel and incorporate nickel metals. The results should be fresh and inviting. Anything but drab.

Classic dining chairs in a silvery gray fabric achieve just the right combination of traditional and contemporary, as does a rug in a contrasting pattern. Artwork brings in some color in subtle hues.

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