Choosing the Perfect Gray

Since we have so much color going on in the main living area of the H-Haus, we have decided to go very neutral for the sitting room. And since the sofa is going to be a dark gray, we know that neutral is going to be in the gray family.

The problem is that I always gravitate toward very light colors, while the Hubster likes colors that really contrast with our white trim (AKA dark). So whenever we choose a color it involves a lot of arguing discussion and a LOT of paint testers. Thank the Lord for paint testers! They've saved us from making a lot of mistakes and from wasting a lot of money. Because to be honest, who can choose a paint color from a tiny two inch by five inch piece of paper???

Here are the contenders:

From left to right:

Martha Stewart - Driftwood Gray (too dark/too blue)
Glidden Smooth Stone (too blah neutral/too light)
Glidden Canyon Echo (great color, a little too light)
Behr Dolphin Fin (great gray/great medium tone)
Behr Silver Drop (too light)
Behr Chocolate Froth (too beige/too light)

Obviously the winner was...Behr Dolphin Fin! Most of the time we've found that we have to go a shade or two lighter than the paint chip that we like to get the right color, but in this case we actually had to go a shade darker. I guess gray is its own animal! Stay tuned for the newly painted space.


  1. Very Nice color. I'm liking how the Marhta one looked too.

  2. I love the color you chose! we went with a darker grey in our entryway - Behr's Sparrow. I love it though - Behr really does make the perfect grey paint!

  3. Everyone seems to love Dolphin Fin! It's recommended on Apartment Therapy all the time.

    I actually painted the majority of an apartment Dolphin Fin (with a long darker gray accent wall). And... I hated it! It was just too cold. I wish I had gone a bit beige-ier, towards a "greige."

    Part of it might have been the apartment itself: it was very cold and industrial, and not in a good way. The gray walls looked cool with my hunter-green couch, but if I had to do it again, I would have done something one shade warmer.

    (And as I type this I'm sitting in my gold-beige living room looking into my warm green dining room, so it may just be my taste...!)

  4. I painted our son's nursery Dolphin Fin (after a lot of agonizing) and it is absolutely beautiful. It's just right, not too dark, not too light, and no weird undertones. Good luck with your hunt!

  5. so funny that you are painting the room gray because im doing the same thing with our guest room. thanks for posting. definitely going to get out dolphin fin.

  6. I went through a similar experience trying to find the perfect shade of blue for our nursery:

  7. I am currently working on picking out a gray for our master bedroom. I was leaning towards Sherwin Williams Popular Gray (based only on the paint chip), but I do like that Dolphin Fin. I might have to check it out. Thanks for posting all your testers, it was really helpful.

  8. We painted our living/dining area Behr's Pewter Mug a year ago... I LOVE it. It's my favorite color out of all the rooms in our house. It's a soft gray with slight blue undertones. The blue only shows up in the late evening, and makes the room feel so calm and welcoming. Love it.

  9. Awesome! Thanks for posting this. We've tried canyon echo, chocolate froth, and are still on the hunt. I just googled dolphin fin and your post came up. Very helpful.



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