‘Light Grey’

… is a colour by Farrow & Ball. I know F&B has come to represent a bit of a joke at the expense of the middle classes, like the ‘Waitrose Essential’ range, or naming your child Orlando. I’ve even poked a tiny bit of fun at it in a poem.

A decorator friend talked us into F&B some years ago, extolling the quality: depth of colour, how you need fewer coats, how nice it is to work with and how the colours change in different lights. It seemed expensive but we tried it in our last home and we loved it. And this flat is crying out for some Farrow-and-Ball-ness.

First we considered the Music Room/guest bedroom: we bought 4 tester tins of Hardwick White, Light Grey, Charleston Grey and Mole’s Breath. I tore big sample strips of lining paper, painted them and taped them around the place. At the moment we have earmarked Charleston Grey – fairly dramatic, but a fine backdrop to the piano, the red Barcelona chairs and a bit of homegrown artwork. However, that may change of course, and we’re not in a position to decorate that room yet.

The Living Room is, however, ripe for painting, and we settled on Light Grey. It can look darkish in some lights, but the Living Room is south-facing and one end is a bay window. The other end of the room is going to be wall-to-wall bookshelves. There’s no picture rail in the room, so we have opted for Light Grey right down to the floor including the skirting boards (and and the plywood temporary fireplace cover.)

Farrow & Ball Light Grey walls bay window
Walls done, skirting board with undercoat only so far.

We don’t know yet what to do with the floor – at some point the floorboards will come up for electrical work (there are only 2 sockets and they are on one wall) and to lay gas to the fireplace (if we’re able to have a flue fitted). It’s likely we’ll have to roll the carpet back for now. I think the floor will be another episode…

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