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Gray Dining Room Update: Benjamin Moore Steel Wool

Posted on May 20, 2022 by KylieMawdsley


I love change. And what’s the best way to change your home? MOVE! Just joking (kind of, as this is our old home and we’ve since moved). Seriously though, paint is the best way to update any space in your home, especially when you’re on a budget.

When we bought our house in 2016 (which is my passive-aggressive disclaimer that this is not my decorating or personal style), the dark colors weighed down what was a bright, south-facing open-concept space…

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Open concept kitchen and dining room before makeover

And it wasn’t just the paint color. Notice the dark brown curtains hanging just above the window trim. These further weighed down the room, making the ceiling feel lower than its already 8 feet. If the drapes were hung closer to the ceiling (they would also need to be longer to do that), the ceiling would look taller, although the dark brown would still make this space look heavy.



Before I got to the current version of our dining space, there was an in-between period (more like in-between periods – which is how often I change my style – wink wink). I had a vision in my head of a mossy, warm golden green that I wanted to try, which made sense with the modern farmhouse, rustic style which was trendy at that time…

Sherwin Williams Mossy Gold in dining room that is farmhouse or country style with pine furniture and black chairs

Terrible photo, I know. A Color Consultant I am – a photographer, I am not.

I loved this version of our dining room for the time we had it. The mossy gold walls warmed the cockles of my heart, but once the kitchen got remodeled it HAD to go!



While I DO love changing colors, I feel like this one will stick (famous last words)…

Benjamin Moore Gray on dining room feature or accent wall. Country or farmhouse style home decor with yellow gold accents and warm, light wood tones like oak

I can’t tell you how painful it was for me to edit these photos and see that cobweb on the light. I have some decent editing skills, but not that good…(about as good as my dusting skills, so it seems).

The space between the two windows isn’t big enough for a traditional sideboard or buffet/hutch – it would look squeezed in and visually weigh the room down. However, I still needed to create some type of focal point, either with artwork or furniture.

Benjamin Moore Gray, the best paint colour. Country style home decor on a gray painted buffet in dining room with yellow and gold accents and rustic mirror

Instead, I found this perfect little buffet-style cabinet at Home Sense, and my favourite mirror EVAH was on clearance for $77 – BAM! Several items in this one photo have sentimental value. Sure, you might see them as ‘decor’, but I know where the heart is.



I stepped slightly out of my comfort zone this time and committed to a bit of color. Don’t get me wrong, I am the furthest thing from a color-phobe; however, when it comes to my walls, I usually gravitate toward warmer, simpler neutrals. This time, Momma wanted some DEPTH…

The color I chose was Benjamin Moore Steel Wool. Steel Wool is a medium charcoal paint color with a pretty skookum (it’s a technical term) undertone of blue and purple. I felt it was just a smidge dense for my space so I had them lighten it by 1/4. You can see it in our entryway as well.



The color of the trim and cabinets is Benjamin Moore Cloud White. I also chose the darker version of Steel Wool, Gray 2121-10, for the accent area in our family room.



The dining room furniture is from a local, budget-friendly store and has a leaf, which is super handy for guests. It’s not solid wood but shows WAY fewer crumbs and marks than many solid wood dining tables I’ve had, thanks to the textured finish of the veneer top.

Open layout farmhouse style dining room and kitchen with Benjamin Moore Steel Wool, Cloud White and round oak table with home decor in country style

I also love the SHAPE of it. Did you know that round or oval dining room tables tend to look more inviting than square or rectangular ones – it’s a psychological thing.

As for the chandelier, I don’t love it (but have seen worse). Sure, the shape is great and I love that it’s not hanging from a chain. And while I’m a sucker for texture (and Ryan Reynolds), the warmth of the shade gives off too warm of a glow. Sure, it’s intimate, but a room like this needs more light – cleaner light.

Modern country or farmhouse style open concept dining room and living room with gray and warm gold and yellow accents. Couch, rug and paint color all coordinate

The view from the living room to the dining room (we have an open-concept living/dining/kitchen)

It would be impossible for me to tell you how IN LOVE I am with my area rug and the way that it connects with the dining room paint color. So, instead of telling you, I will just drool on the keyboard for a second…okay, I’m done now.

Lastly, let’s take a close look at the texture in my home decor – while colors may come and go, I will NEVER tire of texture (and Tim.)

Benjamin Moore Gray with cool undertones. Country style home decor on dining room buffet

I also love how the warmth in the accessories balances the cool tone of the paint color/buffet. I also pulled this look through the ENTIRE open concept space by repeating colors and wood tones for a sense of continuity. You will REALLY see this come into play if you check out our Kitchen Makeover which I just finished a post about!


6 Budget-Friendly Home Update Ideas

The Best Light Greige & Taupe Paint Colors

The Ultimate Guide to Choosing Paint Colors with LRV

Chat soon!

Kylie M Interiors Edecor and Edesign


Kylie M E-design, online paint color consultation expert. Benjamin Moore Sherwin Williams colours

Check out my Online Color Consulting and E-Design Services!



  1. Just looked through your posts of the new bathroom, kitchen, living room and dining room. Loving all of them! We have oak cabinets and darker laminate counters in our kitchen/dining room, which I still like. But, the white/greige/gray combo is definitely swoon worthy! Feeling inspired to maybe try that look in our bathroom.

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