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are these the perfect neutrals?

Boutique hotel room/Photographer: Ellen McDermott/Grays, browns and a selection of understated whites rule throughout the boutique inn.

GrayBarns, the peaceful, polished boutique inn along Connecticut's Silvermine River, is home to just a handful of meticulously chosen neutrals. It's an exercise in the old axiom, less is more. The property’s co-owner and one of the designers at Glazer Group, Nikki Glazer, knows a thing or two about the space’s namesake hue—and definitely has a favorite. She shares her wisdom on infusing your space with hues to calm and relax.

shop the vibe

Start sampling.
“I usually start with a swatching exercise and marinate on things for a week or so,” explains Nikki. “I then go back and if something is missing or I’m looking for something more out of a particular color, I will bring in new samples. It’s always good to look at the swatches in different lights as they will change.”

Boutique hotel bar room/Courtesy of Graybarns/The inn's taproom keeps consistent with the overall neutral theme.

Play with accents.
“I like this gray stripe we did on the permanent partition wall during the pandemic at Tavern at GrayBarns. The contrast stripe makes them feel more interesting but doesn't disrupt the entire room. I would also recommend trying to paint the trim on a door or window in a contrast color like this for a similar effect.”

Graybarns boutique hotel/Photographer: JMarili Forastieri/A soothing, spalike space at GrayBarns epitomizes the neutral theme.

... And play favorites.
Two of Nikki's favorite neutrals are Benjamin Moore's Iron Mountain and Benjamin Moore's Mopboard Black.

samples to inspire

Consider the color variations.
“I like to block in big spaces with something the client feels really comfortable with and wants to live with every day,” says Nikki. “Having studied gray variations, it can be quite a subtle exercise to refine a client's eye to the blues, greens and yellows that exist within a gray hue. And I save the smaller, less formal spaces for experimentation—as a general rule of thumb.”

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