a lovely living

You guys know that I love sharing my style inspiration, but coming in as a close second is my love for working with paint. I love finding the perfect color or exact neutral that a room calls for. Understanding the way that undertones play such an important rule in picking paint colors (when it comes to neutrals especially) has made all the difference when specifying colors for my clients. Well, I didn’t understand any of that when I was selecting paint colors for our home 3.5 years ago. I painted a large white square in every room and then painted 10 different shades of greige to sit and stare at. I eventually came to a decision that I was happy with for every space, but it was quite a time (and money) consuming commitment. Studying under Color Expert, Maria Killam last year and making the investment to have her color boards on hand now makes this process exponentially easier! Having the top Sherwin Williams and Benjamin Moore colors on hand to move around and compare/contrast allows me not only to see how each shade would look, but also to show my clients why one color will work better than another.

With all that being said, today I wanted to share one of my favorite neutral paint colors, Sherwin Willams Accessible Beige. This color runs though most of our home including our living room, kitchen, master bedroom and our sons bedroom. These days I feel like the term beige can scare people away. We immediately picture those warm yellow and orange beiges of decades past and in fear turn to a grey that may end up feeling too cold. Accessible Beige actually borders being a gray and falls into the greige category. It technically has a green undertone but it can be a bit of a chameleon in different spaces. It gives a great warmth to our walls that I absolutely love and I have carried that love into a number of other homes that I’ve had the chance to work in. I wanted to share some of those spaces with you today so I can make a case for this beautiful hue.

Here’s our master bedroom that I have shared before (see the full post here). Making sure it worked with the carpet was key and then I was able to decorate around it.
Here’s another space from our master bedroom.
This was the first kitchen I had the pleasure of working on and although you can only see it here above the window, we carried the color through the bulk of their main level. I did end up cutting the paint by 50% here as the full strength of the Accessible Beige was reading too heavy in their space. A little lighter and brighter was all it needed!
This was another beautiful home that I helped specify color and finishes for. You can see that even with the blue gray island, the Accessible Beige compliments it and warms up the entire space.
Here’s another shot of the color in that same home. This is their mudroom that falls just off of the kitchen.
Here’s one final home that I was brought on to help renovate. I love how the Accessible Beige updated this home and worked well with much of the brown and orange decor.
Here’s a final shot of that same home from the front of the house, to give you another look at the way the wall color pulled everything together.

Lovely, isn’t it?! Now, I’m not saying that this color is guaranteed to work for you. I have certainly pulled it out in some homes where it did absolutely nothing for their rooms. But in the right places with the right complimentary colors, it can do wonders!

If you are planning a new build, renovation or just freshening up a room, read more about my consultations HERE.


  • Jennifer says:

    We painted our entry way several years ago. Great color

  • Laura Bird says:

    Marisa, how would you compare this color to SW “Agreeable Gray”? Thanks for your input.

    • marisa says:

      Hi Laura! I just shot you an email with a visual, but in response to this question, the main difference is that Accessible Beige has a green undertone and Agreeable Grey has a violet undertone. Both are beautiful colors used in the right place (I have Agreeable Gray in our family room). Hope that helps!

  • Amy says:

    Which white paint would you recommend for cabinets and trim when using the Accessible Beige at 50%?

    • marisa says:

      I’m a big fan of SW Pure White which is just a touch off-white giving it a beautiful touch of warmth.

  • Maria says:

    So this accesible beige in the pictures is cut 50%?

    • marisa says:

      I only cut it for one project (the one where I noted above) as it was reading too dark in their space. All others, my home included, I used at regular strength.

  • Gloria Puentes says:


    I recently tried the SW Neutral Ground in my north facing room, but the undertone is too much orange. I got a sample of this SW Accesible Beige and it doesn’t seem to pull an undertone, but looks too heavy in my north facing living room. Do you recommend cutting it at 50%? Does that change the LRV and won’t look too washed out?

    Thank you!

    • marisa says:

      Hi! From what I’ve seen and heard, Accessible Beige carries a slight green undertone which reads as a beautiful neutral. I have also cut it by 50% for a client’s house and it worked perfectly (although I’d still recommend sampling). I can’t say exactly what it does to the LRV but it turned out beautifully for us!

  • Lindsay says:


    Looking to paint kitchen cabinets a very light beige(off white) or antique white – would like to stay away from bright white! What color would you recommend for this that would go well with accessible beige?


    • marisa says:

      Hi! SW Snowbound is a pretty off-white that would look pretty with AB. I wouldn’t venture too far past that or you’ll end up getting into the creams which wouldn’t look as crisp next to Accessible Beige. Good luck!

  • Jan Pierce says:

    Could assessable beige butt up with useful gray? I have one wall that goes from lower level(useful gray) to upper level and I don’t know what to do with it, since thinking of painting upper level accessible beige.

    • marisa says:

      That’s a tough question. I’d say that it mainly depends on whether there are clear breaks in the space or not. In short, I don’t think these two colors would look great together, especially if you can see them both at the same time. I would prefer to see a change in colors with more of a contrast.

  • Judi says:

    Hello, am considering AB for family/kitchen, which adjoins living/dining room (separated by an open doorway, so you can view both). Would it be OK to paint the LR/DR White Duck, Shojii White, or another off white color? The trim and top cabinets will be Pure White. Last … what do you think of AB on walls AND lower kitchen cabinets?

  • Jenny says:

    I’m looking to paint our condo in siesta key Florida. Looking at agreeable grey or accessible beige to keep it neutral. We have white molding. Can I ask which one you prefer? Thanks so much!!!

    • marisa says:

      Hi Jenny! Both are beautiful colors which I have in my home. The main difference is that Agreeable has a violet undertone and Accessible has a green undertone. So it’ll just depend which relates more to your furniture, rugs etc.

  • Adrienne says:

    Beautiful color. How does it compare to Modern Gray (lighter version of Colonnade Gray)? I want to put one of them on my two living room walls in an open concept area to lighten it up (it’s always in shadow) and distinguish it from the kitchen. Accessible Beige seems to blend better with the kitchen color (Jogging Path) and make it look more soft neutral and less green (which is good!) What do you think?

    • marisa says:

      AB most likely looks better because it also has a green undertone, although it comes off much more neutral than Jogging Path. I’m almost certain that Modern Gray has a violet undertone which is likely why it’s not feeling quite right. AB could be a great option, but if you wanted to compare one other that’s a little lighter yet still has a green undertone is Ben Moore’s Classic Grey. Hopefully one of those works out for you!

  • Jay says:

    Hi! I would like to lighten some of my walls but keep the Antique White trim, especially since I would have to repaint the plantation shutters. Would Agreeable Beige work with the Antique White? I know it won’t pop like it would with some brighter whites.

    • marisa says:

      Hi Jay! I’m assuming you’re referring to SW Antique White? If so I’d sample a large area (or paint a large sample board to move around). I’m not sure you’ll have much of a contrast as they are rather close in color. Antique White looks to have a decent amount of yellow which may end up making the trim look ‘dirty’. Let me know what you come up with!

  • Mary says:

    What are your thoughts on painting interior walls, doors and trim in accessible beige? We have a one level condo with a short hallway that has several bedroom and bath plantation shutter doors in close proximity to one another. The floor and baseboards are tile so it would be the doors and jambs that would match the walls. Too monochromatic?

    • marisa says:

      Hi Mary! That’s more of a personal preference when it comes to going monochromatic. But if you love the look, I say go for it!

  • Alan kauffman says:

    I am using accessable
    beige in condo
    With ceilinghite and snowbound
    White trim. Soffits are rounded and will be accessable beige but problem is kitchen ceiling. Can be painted accessable beige ( lots of cams on ceiling) so the soffits are the same or white but then that soffit sticks out. Your suggestion appreciated.


  • Mary Anne says:

    I have painted furniture that is BM Coud White. I’m considering painting my walls SW Assessible Beige at 50%. Will these two colors work together?

  • Diane Keeley says:

    I have some ancient marble paint in My Den that I’ve had for years and I still love that has a green undertone how would accessible beige in another room look with with that?

    • marisa says:

      Hi Diane! Those two colors are both beautiful in their own regard, and they do look pretty together, but personally I’d like to see a little more contrast going from one color to another. You could always paint a large sample board to get a better idea for yourself in your space and hopefully that will make your decision a little more clear!

  • Pam says:

    I just painted my kitchen Revere Pewter and I absolutely love how it turned out. My kitchen faces west and my cabinets are almond. Now, the next room is the living room that faces West and gets a lot of light from a big bay window. Would you recommend to continue RP or go with accessible Beige?

    • marisa says:

      Hi Pam! Without seeing the space in person, I’d say sticking with RP is your better bet. The colors aren’t drastically different and may just have people questioning if it’s the same color or not, especially since it gets different light. If you love RP where it is, you’ll likely love it in another space, regardless of the light.

  • Paula says:

    Would Accesible Beige work with my dark gray sofa?

    • marisa says:

      Hi Paula, that will mainly depend on the undertones of your sofa. Grey can have a blue, green or violet undertone. If it has a green undertone, there’s a good chance it could work. Otherwise you may want to look into other colors.

  • Nichelle says:

    I Love Accessible Beige when it shows the more beige taupe undertones than the gray but how can I achieve this look?

    • marisa says:

      Hi Nichelle, AB technically has a green undertone to it, not taupe. I’d recommend painting a large sample board to move around your room to see if it’s reading the way you want it to in your space.

  • Janr says:

    Hi ,
    My kitchen is open into my livingroom . The kitchen is painted Sherwin Williams Seasalt. I am wondering what tne best beige color would be to use in the living room . My hardwood floors are a medium to dark brown with orange tones. Any help you can give me would be appreciated.

    • marisa says:

      Hi Jan, Sea Salt is one of my favorite colors! And fortunately (or not) it can work with most beiges/grays. What’s more important to make this decision is looking at the undertones of your furniture, rugs, pillows, drapes etc. and working off of that to help make a better decision.

  • Rhonni Hoeg says:

    What do you think of accessible beige for the exterior? I’m thinking of updating my stucco home and need both a lighter shade (for wood trim-maybe aesthetic white?) and darker shade (for stucco banding around windows) that would look good. I’ve also got some stone on the front so I want to blend all the colors.

    • marisa says:

      Hi Rhonni. The most important influencer in guiding your decision should be the stone that won’t be changing. Make sure you play off of the strongest influencing undertone in the stone and work off of that. For reference, AB has a green undertone, so keep that in mind!

  • Maria Moore says:

    Hi! Our townhouse is basically one big great-room on the first floor. The kitchen and living room are currently painted 2 different colors and I feel it gives it a closed off look. I’d love to paint our whole downstairs, staircase, one color to open it up a bit. Unfortunately our kitchen remodel was back in 2013 and we went w traditional off white (that’s really almond) cabinets. We’re trying to go more..west elm, less pottery barn LOL
    I’d love a greige we could use throughout that would be okay with the kitchen cabinets!! The one picture you posted where you cut AG 50% looked like our color cabinets! How you think it worked? I am STRUGGLING. We’re taking everything else in the townhouse lighter and brighter with greys. And this kitchen is making things hard. Couch in living room is grey. Light Woodlook tile with dark greys and taupes…
    Think AG would work?

    • marisa says:

      Hi Maria! This can be tricky to specify without seeing the colors in person, but if your cabinets are similar to the kitchen above, I’d say you have a good chance of it working! You’ll also want to pay attention to the undertones in your sofa. AB has a green undertone, so you’ll want to make sure that works with your sofa as well (which could also have a blue of violet undertone). I hope this is helpful! I’ve also worked with a number of clients remotely, so if you get stuck and want to discuss a consultation, let me know! Good luck!

  • Ashley Cannon says:

    We just painted our entire upstairs AB with a white trim. Totally love it! We are struggling with finding a carpet color to match. I came across your blog with your beautiful bedroom and the carpet and weals look great together! Can you tell me your carpet brand and color as well as suggest some carpet colors that will compliment the wall.


    • marisa says:

      Hi Ashley! Unfortunately our carpet was installed just before we moved in by the previous owner, so I do not know the brand/color. Since AB has a green undertone, I’d look for something that has the same. Typically when looking at the various carpet swatches next to one another, you can decipher these differences a little easier!

  • Kathy says:

    Looking at AC but trying not to paint trim would it be ok to keep our trim STAR THISTLE and paint walls AB

  • Kathy fox says:

    I am looking to paint my living room that has cathedral ceilings with AB . Would you recommend painting the ceilings with white ceiling paint or just painting the ceiling the same color on both ceiling and walls, I have 2 skylights and 2 south west windows that get a lot of light in the afternoon but not a lot of other natural light during the early part of the day. I have medium to dark wood flooring and dark brown leather furniture. Do you think the AB will lighten up the room and go with the flooring and furniture. Have golden oak trim in this room

    • marisa says:

      Hi Kathy! When you say ‘lighten up’, I suppose this will be in comparison to what you currently have. In a room with abundant natural light, you won’t have any issues with it feeling light. I have it in our living room which doesn’t get a ton of light and it still feels very fresh! I’d test it out next to your oak trim before you comment to make sure you feel good with it!

  • Robin says:

    Do you think AB mixed at 50% and Alabaster would be pretty together?

  • Maureen B says:

    We just painted our open concept first floor accessible beige and really like it. We have creamy colored kitchen cabinets and am concerned if it matches. One wall matches up up to the cabinets

    • Angela Keel says:

      It sounds like your creamy cabinets have a similar LRV and undertone which causes them to appear to match in certain lighting. LRV = light reflective value. I would want a wall paint to contrast with the cabinets unless it is a very small kitchen. Avoid putting anything with a yellow or a pink undertone with Accessible Beige, whatever you choose to do. Love your blog Marisa!!! I am a retired designer, living in FL now.

      • marisa says:

        Great input, thanks Angela! I agree. I have off-white cabinets next to AB and I love it. But if your cabinets push more towards cream (with a stronger yellow undertone) you may not love the contrast.

  • Robin Larson says:

    looking to paint foyer, living room and hallway accessible beige. Windows face east and west. ok?
    our kitchen has white cabinets and white and gray countertops. Will accessible beige
    look ok with the white kitchen?

    • marisa says:

      Hi Robin! I wouldn’t focus as much as the direction of the light as I would the undertones in the countertops. That’s going to be the ‘boss’ in making your decision. AB has a green undertone to it (grey could also have blue or purple undertones). Once you can identify that you’ll have a better direction!

  • Tera says:

    We are building a house and just had our cabinets done in AB. Trying to decide on a color for the rest of the interior. It’s a large Craftsman, very open kitchen into the great room. With the cabinets accessible beige, can the walls also be accessible beige? Or should I go a bit darker grey? Gotta decide by next week!

    • marisa says:

      Hi Tera! Personally, I’d like to see a contrast between my walls and cabinetry. Darker is an option but maybe consider going lighter as well if there’s enough natural light to support it :)

  • Terri says:

    How does Accessible Beige work with travertine? I have a master bathroom full of travertine (part of the walls and floors) and want to update & freshen the space. The bathroom gets tons of morning/eastern light.

    • marisa says:

      Hi Terri! That depends on the undertones in your particular travertine as it can vary greatly from what I’ve seen. AB has a green undertone, which would look good with some and not so hot with others. I do offer e-consultations if it’s a space where I’m able to get a good read on colors through pictures. So if you get stuck, feel free to reach out.

  • Lauren West says:

    Would SWMedici Ivory trim be ok with SW Accessible Beige walls?

    • marisa says:

      Hi Lauren, I’m not all that familiar with Medici Ivory, but if it’s a strong yellow undertone, it may not have much of a contrast with the AB.

  • Jamie says:

    I have painters working as I type this!! I’m in a panic, I have waited 10-years to get rid of the yellow/brown tones and here we are…I had aesthetic white as my choice (cherry cabinets/floors) and now on the walls it looks like white out to me. I was hoping to go with a tad more contrast (in the beige, NOT grey direction). Trim will be white.

    Do you have any suggestions?

    We have purchased a sample of accessible beige but it’s a little darker in some rooms then I envisioned for our final product. Would cutting the color by 25% do anything for the color, or would 50% be more realistic for contrast. I am wanting more color then aesthetic white but not as much color as full strength accessible beige…I have until 630a tomorrow to get my paint color finalized! It’s our whole open floor plan and basement — Stressed!

    • marisa says:

      Hi Jamie! I hear you, paint can be stressful AND costly. Without diving into a consultation, I can’t specify an accurate color for you (I’d need to know more about the undertones in the hard finishes, such as the counters etc). Aesthetic White is very likely too stark of a white for the warmth of a cherry kitchen. If you’re feeling good about the AB and are just looking to lighten it, I’d recommend cutting it by 50% which I have done before. If you find yourself still questioning tomorrow, keep me posted and we can schedule a consultation and get it figured out fairly quickly! Good luck!

  • Tracy says:

    Hi, I want to paint the interior walls of my condo AB but my floors are travertine with a pinky/ sandy udertone..would that work or do you have another suggestion of a neutralthat works with this type of travertine?

    • marisa says:

      Hi Tracy, AB could compliment the pink in your travertine, but you’ll also want to keep in mind the undertones you have in other finishes such as counter tops as well as furniture, rugs etc.

  • Jamie says:

    I have lots of oak in my house and that won’t be changing anytime soon. Our main floor is a open space and I want to paint it all the same color. I was looking at Agreeable Gray or Accessible Beige. Which one would go better with the tones in the oak? Or would you recommend a third option? Thanks!

    • marisa says:

      Hi Jamie, what’s going to play a stronger role in your paint selection are the other finishes that carry an undertone…ie your counter tops, backsplash, rugs, upholstered furniture etc, depending on all the spaces you’re looking to carry it. Those will play a higher importance in coordinating with.

  • Deb says:

    Looking for a taupe or greige for kitchen and a hallway wall that goes well with Seasalt in adjoining open rooms. Considering Accessible Beige but i wonder what you think about that against a gray subway tile backsplash? (We won’t be replacing the backspash)

    • marisa says:

      Hi Deb, I’d have to dive into this one a little more in order to give you an accurate response. I’d need to get a good read on the undertones in the grey backsplash in addition to those in the countertop. If you’re interested in an e-consultation, shoot me an email and we can set some thing up. In short, Sea Salt and AB do work well together :)

    • Deb Garda says:

      I’m also looking at Modern Gray. Does anyone have experience with that as far as undertones? According to where it falls in spectrum at SW and according to their employee there is very little, but if any green… Saw on Houzz that someone said it throws a pink.

  • Jen Chaney says:

    Hi, Deb

    Do you have any thoughts about Shitake compares to AB? I’m looking to find a neuteral with a green undertone to coordinate with Fantasy Brown marble. Kitchen and family room need to be the same color. FR has one wall of built in bookcases in Urbane Bronze. Thanks SO much!!

    • marisa says:

      Hi Jen, I’d have to see the marble in person to really be able to specify a color, but both AB and Shitake carry a green undertone, which seems to be what you’re looking for. And I could see them both complimenting Urbane Bronze. I’d recommend painting both sample on large white cardboard to move about your space and see how they read on a larger scale.

  • Elena Balandina says:

    Hello Marisa, we have open floor plan, kitchen, dining room and living room all kind of togher. Our cabinets are white oak, white oak floor, thinking to pain alabaster, agreeable gray or accessable beige, white trims all around, what would you recommend . At first we were thinking to color everything alabaster or cloud white. And Accessable beige our master bedroom and kids room. So lost please help. Other color that we like are edgecomb gray. We would like warm colors. Thinking to go with white everywhere and do beige or gray for bedroom. Please help thank you

    • marisa says:

      Hi Elena, it sounds like you have your hands full with decisions! With so much going on here, I’d be more than happy to schedule a consultation with you. There are a lot of other things to take into consideration before deciding on the right colors for you, but I’d be happy to help you tackle it. If you’d like to find out more about what all the consultations involve, feel free to shoot me an email and we can discuss.

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