10 green and grey living room ideas for a smart space

From soothing and relaxing, to confident, here are some of our fave green and grey combos

Living room with green trellis wallpaper and grey sofa
(Image credit: Future PLC/Dominic Blackmore)

Give a grey living room a fresh twist by teaming with green – there are plenty of shades that pair well, making it an easy colour combination to get right

While grey remains oh-so-popular, a new colour seems to be edging in, almost replacing blush as the accent colour to use – we’re talking ‘50 shades of green’. Just as grey can vary immensely, from cool and contemporary to warm and snug, so can a green accent, making it a great partner for grey living room ideas.

Sage green is a great choice for a grey living room though, echoing a warm grey’s undertones, while a yellow-green plays more to cooler grey’s best side. Looking for something stronger? ‘Verdigris green works best with softer tones of clay white and chalk grey and a light, natural floor,’ says Justyna Korczynska, senior designer at Crown. ‘Lime green is perfect for creating a biophilic decor with grey – just add plenty of green foliage,’ suggests Justyna.

Green and grey living room ideas

Green is known for its calming qualities. Karen Haller, the leading international authority in the field of Applied Colour Psychology, and author of The Little Book of Colour, says: ‘Green falls in the middle of the colour spectrum, and the eye requires very little to no adjustment to be able to see it. It is, therefore, a very restful colour for us, and indicative of balance and harmony.’ 

Provoking such a mood, it’s easy to see why green is such a good partner to grey. If you need inspiration of other colours that go with grey in any room around the home,  then start with our expert tips.

1. Bring the outdoors in

Green living room with wall panelling, wood flooring and a grey rug

(Image credit: Future PLC/Dominic Blackmore)

Soft shades of green and grey are a great way to bring nature into your living room scheme creating a calming space that you’ll want to relax in. Look for a soft sage green paint for walls, with a grey-blue rug underfoot – think Scandinavian forests on a cool day before the leaves change to those warmer russet tones. 

Pale wooden furniture is the perfect choice for this soft scheme, enhancing that natural vibe, while a watercolour-effect forest inspired fabric finishes the look.

2. Use yellow-green to colour pop grey

Light grey living room with accents of blue green

(Image credit: Future PLC/Simon Whitmore)

If your grey living scheme needs an accent, try citrine, which is a yellow-green with a touch of zing. Use it sparingly, a few home décor pieces and a splash on cushions. 

This wallpaper also features a turquoise green, in addition to the citrine, again which works brilliantly for a hit of colour. Place a few turquoise pieces around the space, where the eye can visually jump from one to the next – the impact of both accents will freshen up the pale grey, helping to create an interesting space. Bear in mind when noting grey living room mistakes to avoid

3. Repeat a motif in green and grey

Living room with green trellis wallpaper and grey sofa

(Image credit: Future PLC/Simon Whitmore)

Give your living room an Eastern look, repeating a trellis pattern for wallpaper, rug, and soft furnishings for soft green and grey living room ideas. Start with a wallpaper that has a delicate sage green pattern, which provides a tranquil backdrop to a hero heron picture. Team with a grey – almost pencil-like – design for curtains, while a mid-grey rug pulls the pattern together. 

If you need an accent in your green-grey scheme, then try a flash of orange. 

4. Go for wall-to-wall wallpaper

Cosy living room with wall-to-wall tree green wallpaper and a grey sofa

(Image credit: Future PLC/Simon Whitmore)

Give a grey sofa living room idea a new backdrop with a soft treescape wallpaper in shades of green through to grey. Choose a design that works with mid-century shapes, and don’t be afraid to hang things on top of the wallpaper, the background is soft enough to allow mirrors and shelves to shine. 

Look for a green rug with a grey thread running through to tie the scheme together.

5. Create drama with emerald and grey

Emerald green living room with smart grey sofa and orange accents

(Image credit: Future PLC/Simon Whitmore)

Choose a rich emerald shade for the walls behind your grey sofa – teamed with brass accents, it’s a great boutique-hotel-look scheme. Add charcoal grey display cabinets for a collection of curios, while ferns, trailing ivy, and shapely green glassware makes this look feel very luxe.

Again, orange – or even a tan leather armchair – provides a visual accent to the green-grey living room scheme. Bring in more botanicals, with artwork on walls, printed cushions, and cloches. 

6. Green or grey?

Grey panelled living room with white sofa and grey green woodwork

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Brittain)

Blur the colour boundaries between green and grey with soft shades – it’s the perfect scheme for a modern country living room idea. Start with a the palest of greys on the walls, painting a dresser pale sage – you’re looking for subtle difference to maintain the harmony. Linen cushions add to the relaxed feel, while a grey ribbed rug adds warm texture. For pattern, try a botanical print, adding a wall hanging, cushions and printed ceramics on display.

7. Use tactile linen fabric

Green living with grey linen blinds and a grey green sofa

(Image credit: Future PLC/Simon Whitmore)

Grey can add definition to an all-green scheme, especially if you choose a slubby linen for blinds and cushions. Choose a green paint shade that has a touch of blue – it’s ideal for creating a warm-but-not-too-fresh living room. Pay attention to the smallest of details for a coherent scheme, like opting for green binding on a sisal rug, while unusual ceramics in jade green add extra depth. If blue is on your wishlist, a blue and grey living room idea could be a good alternative to green.

Looking for a quick table arrangement? Group together a collection of vases, including ones in shades of green, and place on a large tray with a few blooms popped in.

8. Frame nature with grey

Modern living space with green velvet L-shaped sofa, window-style mural wall and smart grey walls and floors

(Image credit: Future PLC/David Giles)

Make the wall the hero in a grey and green living room idea. With a statement wallpaper or mural in leafy green, use grey to act as a ‘frame’. Take the grey-oak colour from wooden flooring up and around the feature wall, echoing the branches of the mural design. 

Go for a green velvet sofa – with such a statement wall, more is definitely more.

9. Pretty up a garden room

Garden room with neutral furnishings, concrete flooring and green accents

(Image credit: Future PLC)

Layer up a daybed with plenty of cushions, using soft blush as a third colour. Walls need to be painted the barest of greys – white would be too harsh for such a pretty room. Again, natural wood is the obvious choice for furniture, while coloured stools are a great way of moving pops of the palette around the space in larger blocks.

10. Let the botanicals bloom

Smart living room with white sofa and black accents, and botanical prints on the walls and cushions

(Image credit: Future PLC/Dominic Blackmore)

Fresh green and crisp white create a sophisticated living room. Take your starting point from a hero fabric design that’s used to upholster a hero chair and for scatter cushions on a white sofa. When it comes to the grey of this scheme, think accent, with a high-shine side table, charcoal black picture frames and accessories on open shelving.

Does sage green go with grey?

‘Absolutely,’ says interior designer Amy Jones of Greta-Mae. It makes a very calming and serene combination that especially suits a simply Scandi vibe. Try teaming with lots of natural wood and textures.’ So if this shade of green floats your boat, could a sage green and grey living room idea be your perfect scheme?

‘One phrase I hear from some of my clients is “I want to bring the outside in”,’ says Amy. ‘I think the idea of reflecting nature inside is something that many people are looking for. Although not everyone is a fan of green; it does seem to be a “Marmite” colour – you either love it or hate it. I personally love it and use it in my schemes a lot. I love the darker greens such as Obsidian Green from Little Greene and Studio Green from Farrow & Ball.  I would pair these colours with a darker grey, almost black though –  you need to match the colour levels if you want to get green and grey right.’

Jennifer Morgan

Jennifer Morgan is an award-winning editor, writer and stylist, with over 25 years’ experience writing, styling and editing home interest magazines. Jennifer was the deputy editor of Ideal Home from 2008-2010, before launching Ideal Home’s sister title, Style at Home in 2010. Jennifer went on to launch several craft magazines and websites, before going freelance in 2016, with a client list that includes John Lewis, Dunlem and Nordic House. Today, she writes for Ideal Home, Real Homes, Waitrose, Woman & Home, Sainsbury’s Magazine and Homes & Gardens. But it was during lockdown that Jennifer realised her dream of publishing her own magazine – Simply Scandi.