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Are Greige & Taupe the Same Color?

Friday, June 17th, 2011

freshome.com

Would you say the above wall is painted taupe or greige?  What about the one below:

Jean-Louis Deniot

The first photo is painted griege.  The second photo is taupe.  Doesn’t the greige and taupe look like the same color?   They are both beautiful neutrals aren’t they?   Taupe:

MiMi Read

Wait- what about this one?:

                                                   House Beautiful

It is griege! Now they are looking different because of all the gray.   Confused??  Well I was too. Greige:

greige_pict_blue-e1285364126899

freshome.com

Let’s investigate! The definition of taupe according to Wikipedia is: taupe is a vague, unscientific color term which may be used to refer to almost any grayish-brown, brownish-gray, or warm gray color.  The definition of griege is not found in the dictionary (recent word) but designers explain the color as a color between grey and beige.  Well, that does not help much.  Let’s look at the undertones:

Taupe Undertones:   Red(pink) & Green

Greige Undertones:   Gray & Beige

Ok, starting to make a little sense now why sometimes a greige color can look gray. Isn’t it interesting that taupe is described as a grayish color, but there are no undertones of gray?  Gray and beige undertones:

Gray Undertones:       Green, Blue & Mauve

Beige Undertones:   Green, yellow, red(pink) & orange.

So the greige and taupe colors can look similar because of the undertones of beige in the greige which are similar to the taupe undertones.  Are you still with me?  And they are different because again the undertones are not the same.

Taupe:

taupe room

Patricai Helling & Daniel Barsanti

Greige:

Sherwin-Williams.com

1)  So both taupe and griege are gorgeous neutrals.

2)  Taupe and greige can be warm or they can be cool.  Warm greige has a yellow undertone (from the beige).  Warm taupe gets its warmth from the red undertones. Similarly, cool greige has blue undertones (from the gray) and a cool taupe comes from their green undertones.

In conclusion, greige and taupe are not the same color.  They can look similar but because of the undertones they are not.  I now see that a lot of designers actually are not seeing the difference and calling a color greige when it is actually a taupe.

Aren’t you happy I clarified that for you? ;) I have to tell you that since I came back from Maria’s training, I have been undertone obsessed!

Let’s take a test!  Taupe or Greige:

 

                                                        via decorpad

living rooms - gray beige greige walls taupe silk drapes bronze sunburst mirror white gray bergere chairs brass glass coffee table floor lamp black marble fireplacevia decorpad

bathrooms - greige walls glossy black chandelier Ikea Audrey Hepburn Breakfast at Tiffany's canvas print tan black roman shade  Amoroso DesignAmoroso Design

living rooms - Serene Living in warm taupe chocolate brown. and robin's egg blue...  blue & gray trasitional living room design via BHG.  Serenevia decorpad

Photo’s #1 and #4 are taupe.  #2 and #3 are griege.

What are some great taupe’s?  Ben Moore Cedar Key 982, Smokey Taupe 983 and Stone Hearth 984.

Designer greige favorites: Ben Moore Revere Pewter HC-172, Grant Beige HC-83 and Bennington Gray HC-82.

Well, what are you thinking?  Agree or disagree? Do you understand a little better now?  Or more confused?

If you need help selecting colors, contact me today!

Other similar posts you may be interested in:

What I Learned at Color School

Finding the Undertones in Gray Stone

Understanding Beige Undertones

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