How to do Rustic Neutrals

For some people the thought of taking a risk and exploring bright colours or brash shapes in the home strikes fear right into their hearts – and there is nothing wrong with that. Using neutrals can give a sense of comfort and reliability, it’s the safe option, it’s not polarizing, and that’s why this look and feel has become popular. For those who don’t wish to fill their home with more experimental colours there are certain ways of adding a neutral palette that stop it from becoming too boring (here’s looking at you magnolia). Rustic neutrals ooze tactility, they evoke a sense of earthiness and when used correctly can create a homely atmosphere.

Rustic 2 Jose Inesta

Image credit: Jose Inesta

By drawing inspiration from the countryside we can open ourselves up to a whole new spectrum of muted colours – the soft russet of a fox’s fur, the delicate yellow of sun rays on tall grasses, the gritty metallic sheen of farmers’ tools hung by leather straps, all evoke such vivid images. These pastoral tones work together in harmony to create a primitive look that can feel quite elegant when dressed correctly in the home.


Walls painted in Pavilion Gray, woodwork in Strong White, both from Farrow & Ball

Pair these colours with accessories and furniture that is sympathetic to the provincial sentiment behind the colours – think wooden beams, thick grained wooden furniture and distressed leather sofas will help to achieve this look while still keeping the rooms liveable.


Walls painted in Straw, an archive colour from Farrow & Ball

Although this type of décor can work throughout the home, it does perhaps sit more comfortably in a kitchen, dining or living room setting. These are all spaces with a strong sense of family gathering that feels synonymous with this colour scheme, as it’s all about the feeling of belonging and a harmonisation with nature. So, don’t be afraid to experiment with a different set of neutrals in the home, yes they can be a safe option, but they are also versatile enough to still be able to express the personality of whoever lives there.

Rustic 4 - Sam Wheeler

Image credit: Sam Wheeler

Rustic 7 Ariana Prestes

Image credit: Ariana Prestes


Walls painted in Lamp Room Gray from Farrow & Ball


Walls painted in Manor House Gray from Farrow & Ball

Rustic 8 Elias Carlsson

Image credit: Elias Carlsson

Rustic 1 Mikael Kristenson

Image credit: Mikael Kristenson

Rustic 3 - Cole Patrick

Image credit: Cole Patrick

Rustic 5 Nigel Lo

Image credit: Nigel Lo

Rustic 6 Drew Garaets

Image credit Drew Garaets


The Chromologist


The Chromologist is a colour whisperer. He understands and knows them better than they know themselves, translating their pleas to be used beautifully for humankind. It's unknown from whence he came. Some say the fraction of space between a prism and a spectrum, others say he toiled in the fabled colour mines of Svalbard for years untold, deep underground, speaking only to the reds and blues, cerises and aquas, bronze and golds...

The Chromologist 2019 | Farrow & Ball

The Chromologist