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Oct 17, 2019

New Sherwin-Williams Survey Says White, Gray Walls Are Out in 2020

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A new Sherwin-Williams survey of interior designers indicates that gray and white will likely be the colors on the way out in 2020.

As the end of 2019 draws near, the paint manufacturer initiated the survey to get a sense for where the design world is headed next year and beyond. The company surveyed more than 250 professional interior designers to gauge their thoughts on what’s out, what’s in, and what’s next.

According to the survey, beige is back. “While gray has reigned as one of the top wall colors of the past 10 years, a familiar shade is making its way back into favor—beige,” an executive summary of the survey says. “When asked what trends they think are emerging in 2020, beige and warmer neutrals were popular answers. Other trends include the use of deep, bold tones like navy and hunter green; using natural wood in furniture, décor, and cabinetry; and a movement toward more color in general.”

 

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“On the other hand,” the survey continues, “designers also noted the trends that will be dying in 2020 – all white/gray walls, farmhouse and shiplap accents, and accent walls.”

When Sherwin-Williams asked designers what colors they consider to be neutrals, the designers chose white, gray, and beige. But untraditional options are starting to rise to the surface. Designers agreed that the black (66 percent of respondents agreed), sage green (44 percent), and navy blue (42 percent) also could be used as a neutral.

Blush pink, long considered the newest neutral and millennial fan favorite, was considered to be a neutral by only 35 percent of designers, the survey reveals.

 

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The survey also looks into the color preferences of the next generation. “With Gen Z coming into adulthood, their influence on design will only grow in the next decade,” says the survey. “Although many designers are still unsure of their color preferences, 26 percent of those surveyed said that Gen Z was most likely to request yellow and orange hues in their designs.”

But the survey found that older generations still prefer conventionally neutral hues. “Whites and beiges were the most requested colors by every generation older than Gen Z,” the survey finds. “For millennials, however, bolder colors are nearly as popular. Twenty-nine percent of designers claimed millennials were most likely to request neutrals, but 23 percent gave the top spot to blue/purple.”

Despite the fact that beiges and whites rank high on the preference list, the survey finds that some homeowners choose trending colors where they are warranted and have their place. “When asked where clients are likely to use trending colors, residential designers said bathroom or powder room (33 percent), living room (17 percent), bedroom (15 percent), and dining room (10 percent).

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Nigel Maynard

Nigel F. Maynard is the Editor of PRODUCTS. 

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