What Color Trim Goes with Gray Walls? [7 Options Explored]

What Color Trim Goes with Gray Walls

There are so many paint colors available for interior trim that it can be overwhelming trying to narrow down your options. The color you choose for trim and molding can help to draw the eye to particular areas of the room or can help to play down flawed trim, so be aware of your room size and shape and its best assets before making your decision.

The color of your walls will, of course, be instrumental in helping you decide which color your trim should be, as these two colors will be positioned right next to each other and therefore need to be complementary. Here we look at the best colors of trim that go with gray walls.

White

White trim and gray walls

White is the most common color used on trim, and for many years this was considered the gold standard of trim colors. Nowadays, there are many more options for trim colors, but classic white can still be a good option for trim with gray walls if you are going for a clean and simple look.

The shade of gray used on your walls will adjust the impact that white trim has, so you should consider what effect you are trying to achieve.

Dark charcoal walls will look striking next to white trim, with a bold and monochromatic effect that exudes sophistication. Pale gray walls can benefit from the trim in stark white to create a clean and polished feel in the room.

If your gray walls are very light gray to the point that they are almost white themselves, white trim can work to highlight the difference between white and gray and serve as a neat border around the walls.

Neutrals

Neutral trim and gray walls

Neutral colors such as off-white, cream, and beige are a good choice of color trim for gray walls if you want to keep your interior look simple and low-key but feel that the starkness of true white will be too harsh. These pale neutral tones have a softness and subtlety that can make a room feel more calming and comforting, compared to bright white, which can be quite bold.

If you have dark gray walls, then there are a wide range of pale neutral tones you could use for your trim, including neutrals with a brown hue such as light tan or oat shades, or you could choose yellow-based shades of off-white such as buttermilk for a brighter, more cheerful effect.

For medium or pale gray walls, shades of off-white such as ivory and pearl trim provide a contrast that is more gentle and soothing compared to true white while still achieving a classic and clean look.

Gray

Gray trim and gray walls

Using several shades of gray in a room will create a layered, high-end look, and one of the easiest ways to achieve this is by using two complementary shades of gray for your walls and trim. The color of gray on your walls will be pivotal in narrowing down the options for suitable gray colors for your trim.

You should stick to the same palette of grays for both the wall and trim, which will ensure they have similar hues and undertones to prevent them from clashing. For example, if you have a warm gray on your walls, you will need a warm gray in a different shade for your trim.

To create a contrast, choose a trim color that is at least three or four shades darker or lighter than the color on your walls.

Dark gray trim will look modern and elegant next to a pale gray wall; however, a dark gray trim next to a medium gray wall won’t provide enough definition and could look too monotonous.

For pale gray walls, a dark gray trim will make for a bold contrast and help to frame the walls, while medium gray trim would be a softer option while still providing a good contrast.

If you have trim that isn’t in the best shape, then a good way to hide it is to paint it the exact same color as the walls, so a gray wall will be surrounded by gray trim in the same shade. This prevents the eye from being drawn to the trim, and it can also elongate the walls, which is good for rooms with low ceilings or unbalanced room dimensions.

Black

Black trim and grey walls

Pale gray walls with black trim create a look that is contemporary and sophisticated. Black trim in a matte or satin finish will look edgy and urban, while a glossy black trim will have a more cosmopolitan vibe. If your room features a lot of light colors, such as light gray walls and a pale flooring surface, then black trim can really help to break up the space and create interest.

Black trim along the base of the walls can also be a good way to ground the room. If you have decorative molding in a light gray room, then you can really make a feature of it by painting it in black. Even darker gray rooms can look elegant and chic with black trim. This can work particularly well in rooms where you want to achieve a more intimate atmosphere, such as dining rooms and bedrooms.

Deep gray walls lined with black trim evoke a sense of closeness as you feel enveloped in shadows. Small rooms such as bathrooms also look great with black trim, making them feel cozy and stylish.

Blue

Blue is a good color to use on the trim next to gray walls if you want to get away from neutrals but are unsure about bolder, brighter shades. Trim in soft shades of sky blue next to light gray walls can look great in coastal or beach-style interiors, helping to achieve a casual, laid-back atmosphere.

Darker shades of blue such as navy can also work really well alongside gray walls, enhancing the character of the room and introducing a serene ambiance.

Wood

Wood trim and gray walls

Gray walls in some rooms can make a space feel cold or dull. If this is a concern, then you can instantly add warmth and richness to gray walls by using a stain on wooden trim. Wooden trim features grain and color variation that evokes feelings of comfort, helping to balance out any cool tones on gray walls.

The natural tones of wood trim also help to connect us to the outdoors, which is another reason why wooden trim makes a space feel comforting.

Whitewashed wooden trim will look cute in a coastal-themed space with gray walls, while a dark wood trim will help to define rustic-style rooms.

As orange and yellow are great colors to pair with gray, any wooden stains with yellow or orange undertones such as oak and beech will look gorgeous next to gray walls of any shade.

Brights

Bright trim and gray walls

If you have walls in a neutral shade of gray, such as an off-white gray or pale silver-gray, then you can make a bold statement in a room by painting the trim in a bright color. Bright colors which work well with gray are grass green, pumpkin orange, and canary yellow.

Bright colored trim next to gray walls will produce a modern and eclectic look. The vibrancy of bright-colored trim can really help to cheer up a room and make it a more fun place to be, without the commitment and intensity of entire walls painted in a bright color.