Winter Color Palette: Bark & Taupe

Decorating with warm and cool neutrals

It’s a common misconception that you can’t use several different neutrals in a room. If you use lots of tans, then you can’t inject gray. If you’re using black, you can mix in brown. We’re here to dispel this rumor!

In the room above, you’ll see we’ve used grays and taupes to create a beautifully balanced room that’s cozy and versatile.

We started with a very cool gray paint color (Benjamin Moore’s Arctic Shadows #1559), and we coated the entire room (moldings and all) with it. Then, we brought in warm neutrals, like our Buffalo Check in Taupe, a warm wooden table (our Essex Table), and a rug with lots of tan in it (our Highclere Rug). The Buffalo Check fabric is the perfect foil for bringing these two neutrals together because it has both colors. It has a cool gray, as well as warm tans. In addition to the Buffalo print, you could bring in our Trilby fabric in either Natural or Bark, and our Callisto Stripe in Taupe. All of these fabrics would work harmoniously with the gray paint color.

To finish off the room, we used our Cosette Chandelier and our Sovereign I art print that brings all of these colors together. Top the table with a few Found Dough Bowls, and your room is ready for entertaining!

Find more color palette ideas, or browse our Pinterest boards for more inspiration!

How to Decorate Team

We enjoy spending days interacting with How to Decorate readers. From answering Design Dilemmas to writing How To articles and working with guest designers, our passion is to provide informative and accurate resources to help people solve their design problems.


  1. Reply


    January 27, 2015

    my favorite color palate!

    • Reply

      Caroline @ How to Decorate

      January 28, 2015

      Thanks JoAnne! We’re happy to hear you like it!