Do we need to curb the greyness and let a little more colour into our lives?

By Swindon Link - 30 June 2019

Arts and CultureHome and Garden

Okay, let’s just stop for a minute and address the colour grey. It’s permeated your life, although you may have only semi-consciously recognised it.

You’ve got a grey car; you’re not quite sure why, you’ve never owned a grey car in your life, but now you have one.

You painted your kitchen, hallway and bedroom grey. You looked around the room, paint barely dry and wondered why you did it, but there it is. Obviously you needed to colour code, so you got the grey sofa, up-cycled the dining table and chairs and painted them grey too. The tiles, the table cloth, the front door – even the coffee mugs are grey now.

You took a trip to your favourite pub and even they’ve gone grey. The unfashionable cigarette stained varnished stools are now grey. The bar is grey, the panelled walls are a slightly lighter grey and it’s now gone from being The Queen’s Head to The Greyhound.

You can’t quite put your finger on when it happened; one day there was colour and then there just…wasn’t.

Grey is classy; it demonstrates taste without the risk of expressing any individual palate or character. It’s the new beige, it’s the new magnolia; clean, inoffensive and a good choice for an upcoming open house.

But like anything, it should be treated in moderation. Do you remember ‘feature walls’ and when they were a thing?

People rushed to DIY stores with arms full of wallpaper, desperate to make one wall in their house as garish and as close to a magic eye picture as possible.

But fast-forward a few years and these feature walls are now an unsightly, strobing mess in these days of sober greyness.

We now shamefully and quietly paint over the whole affair as if it didn’t happen, like the realisation and subsequent hangover the morning after a night of endless sambuca shots.

Current trends are a powerful tool, but even more so if used sparingly.

Ask anyone who thought it was a good idea in the 70’s to plaster their walls in psychedelic shades of brown and yellow wallpaper and follow it up with the matching shag carpet and egg-shaped armchair; it probably looked pretty ‘groovy’ for a few months until the 80’s came along with pastel colours and pine furniture and made the whole thing seem about as fitting as an acid trip at a job interview.

So maybe we need to curb the greyness; recognise that there is power in restraint and let a little more colour into our lives.

Words by Michael Bosley

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