A WARM GRAY PAINT COLOR WITH PURPOSE!
Sandwiched between the best warm gray paint colors, and popular cool grays is this lovely little color called Nimbus. While this color doesn’t get the recognition it deserves, I’m here to bring it out into the open where it belongs!
I only use photos from my Online Color Consulting clients to show you relatable and real homes.
WHAT TYPE OF COLOR IS NIMBUS – IS IT WARM OR COOL?
While it can be hard to tell just eyeballin’ it, Nimbus is a SLIGHTLY warm gray paint color. If you have a north-facing light, it will look more like a cool shade of gray, and its undertones (coming shortly) could be a bit more exposed. However, if you have south-facing or warm afternoon western light, it will lean more into its warmth without going ANYWHERE near taupe; it’s not THAT warm.
WHAT’S THE LRV OF NIMBUS?
Nimbus has an LRV of 59.4 (let’s call it 60 for our sanity), putting it in the light depths. A light gray with this LRV will wash out a bit in intense light but won’t be so heavy that it weighs a room down. However, if you have a DARK room, it could look a bit flat (learn more HERE).
However, being only slightly warm, Nimbus isn’t a cozy gray – you need more warm, brown undertones than Nimbus offers. Benjamin Moore Collingwood is warmer than Nimbus, but really, grays like this aren’t meant to be terribly ‘cozy’- they’re just not COLD.
Not sure what LRV is? It could save your paint lovin’ life – read all about it HERE.
WHAT ARE THE UNDERTONES IN NIMBUS? IS IT NEUTRAL?
Just because a color is a NEUTRAL, doesn’t mean it’s lacking COLOR. There IS no useable true NEUTRAL gray so that you will see undertones in Nimbus, particularly a hint of violet! However, while the undertones can be slightly noticeable if you’re overly sensitive to undertones, they aren’t remotely overwhelming. In fact, more so than green or blue undertones, violet undertones tend to suit more interior finishes, including quartz countertops that mimic the look of marble, SOME beige tiles, and a wide range of wood tones.
Remember, the less undertone a color has, the more likely it is to pick up other colors for its surrounding environment. Green landscaping outside can toss green undertones on your walls. The same goes with afternoon western sunshine, which can add a golden glow to almost any well-intentioned neutral!
Before, with its green undertone, Benjamin Moore Horizon was the wrong shade of gray for the tile in this bathroom…
After, Nimbus hits JUST the spot!
SAMPLING NIMBUS WITH PEEL & STICK
SAMPLIZE offers peel & stick paint samples that you can easily move around your room for over HALF THE COST of traditional sample pots – and they deliver right to your front door!
Get your PEEL & STICK SAMPLE OF NIMBUS HERE
WHAT WHITE TRIM COLOR GOES WITH NIMBUS?
Nimbus is only slightly fussy about white paint colors. If you already have white trim, make sure it’s not too warm/yellow/creamy, as Nimbus won’t be happy. Instead, focus on shades of white with passive warmth or are closer to the true white range.
- Benjamin Moore Chantilly Lace
- Sherwin Williams Pure White
- Benjamin Moore White Dove – probably as warm as you should go
IS BM NIMBUS A GOOD LIGHT GRAY FOR AN EXTERIOR?
Nimbus CAN work on an exterior, but expect to see its slight purple undertones. Many exteriors SUIT this undertone, thanks to their particular brick, stone, roof, or driveway finish, so don’t let the sight of it dissuade you.
WHAT COLORS ARE SIMILAR TO NIMBUS?
While you will see shifts in undertones, temperature, and depths, several grays are worth comparing with Nimbus, such as…
- Sherwin Williams On the Rocks vs. Nimbus. On the Rocks is a touch stormier and cooler than Nimbus. The violet undertone can be slightly more noticeable as well. As for depth, they’re similar, but On the Rocks is a bit lighter, with its LRV of 62.
- Sherwin Williams Agreeable Gray vs. Nimbus. These two are very similar in looks, and depth! Agreeable Gray is a bit warmer than Nimbus. Whereas Nimbus caters to a mild violet hue, Agreeable Gray is more flexible and can pick up a wink of green or violet – of the two; Agreeable Gray tends to look more neutral. Agreeable Gray could be a great tweak if Nimbus’s undertone makes you nervous.
- Nimbus vs. Benjamin Moore Collingwood. Just as On the Rock is a bit cooler than Nimbus, Collingwood is a bit warmer, and still shares the same hint of violet. Collingwood is also a bit lighter than Nimbus (only by a wink), with its LRV of 62. You have a great spread to compare and choose from between these three. However, if you want something a bit LIGHTER…
- Nimbus vs. Benjamin Moore Balboa Mist. Balboa Mist is a popular shade of gray that’s considerably LIGHTER than Nimbus, with an LRV of 66. And while they’re both warm grays, Balboa Mist can have slightly more noticeable violet (violet-pink) undertones.
WHAT PAINT COLORS GO WITH NIMBUS?
Nimbus is a bit finicky – you want to be careful about which colors you throw in a palette with it…
- Subtle off-white paint colors with MINIMAL undertones, like Sherwin Williams Heron Plume and Benjamin Moore Silver Satin. Off-whites with too much color will overwhelm Nimbus. Benjamin Moore Classic Gray is also a pretty partner.
- Blue-gray blends can be beautiful with Nimbus, especially those with LRVs lower than 40, as they act like accents (accent wall/decor/etc…).
- Some light stormy gray paint colors with blue-green undertones can be BEAUTIFUL with Nimbus if you’re painting an adjoining room.
- Avoid shades of beige that are DARKER than Nimbus, as the warm-cool balance will be off (any beige should be LIGHTER than Nimbus, not darker). Even then, not many beiges or tans make the cut with Nimbus. An off-white beige like Sherwin Williams Aesthetic White could be one of your best options.
- Dark shades of gray with a violet undertone can be gorgeous, but so can those with green or blue hues – almost any dark charcoal gray will do! Use these colors as accent colors on feature walls.
- A darker greige with a noticeable green undertone, like Sherwin Williams Urbane Bronze is a STUNNING accent to Nimbus. Consider it for your kitchen island, living room accent wall, the inside of your front door, or ANYWHERE YOU LIKE!
Not sure which paint color is best for YOUR home?
Check out my Online Paint Color Consulting – I’d love to help!