Skip to main content

Most people assume that in an empty room the colour of their floors will guide them in choosing the perfect paint colour. But that can leave you feeling lost. Let’s clear up the confusion with a few go-to paint colours and the extra step need to do if you have grey floors.

It feels like everyone on the planet either has hardwood or LVP (Luxury Vinyl Plank) flooring, and for good reason. It’s cleaner and just as economical as carpet, making these types of flooring very popular.

And that makes this burning question from my followers more common than ever. Maybe you’re looking around your house and wondering the same thing?

“What’s the best wall colour to work with my (insert colour here) flooring?”

Looking for inspiration in an empty room

When I was a new decorator, most homes were full of honey oak or fir wood tones. Back in the day, when I was running around from house to house doing colour consultations ofent I would be in an empty house. So when I was faced with orange wood floors with no other inspiration, I simple chose an orange beige paint colour.

When the room is empty, we look at the thing that has colour in it and that’s usually the hardwood/LVP floors.

Fast forward through thousands of colour consultations later. And I now know better.

And I have posted about which floors are bossy and which floors are as versatile as jeans here. However let’s start with what to do with the biggest flooring trend out there and that is grey LVP.

Choosing a Wall Colour for Grey LVP Floors

If you have grey LVP and you want a neutral. It does work better if you choose a neutral that relates to your floors because grey floors are not as versatile as flooring that looks like wood.

Here’s an example of blue grey walls that don’t work at all with the much warmer yellow/taupe floors.

What would make this entry of the black and white trend in 2023 is the walls would be stark white and the railings would be black.

However, look again at the floors and you’ll notice there’s a much warmer creamy/yellow shade in them. That’s why a warmer complex cream would be better because grey floors are typically a lot less versatile than floors that are the colour of real wood.

The colour of real, natural wood is like denim… why? Because it goes with everything.

Same with this entryway floor. Again the wall colour could have worked better with the floors. 

Because the closer the neutrals are in value the more they try to relate. And if they don’t, it looks like you tried to match them and you failed.

This image is a great example that shows that you have to work with the undertone of grey floors if you have them.

The walls on the left side of this room are concrete. And what’s the undertone of concrete?

When you compare them to the floors what colours do you see?

Can you see the violet grey and taupe in the room?

Now, take a look with the help of the neutral colour wheel. It becomes more clear, right?

Image source

Here’s what this means. If you identify your floors as violet grey and taupe, then you need to decorate around them.

A violet grey greige or taupe greige paint colour would be the best choice for the walls here.   You can download my curated paint colour list here.

Colour Rescue: Which paint colour goes with my wood floors?

But if all this hurts your head, here are the two best colours to consider if you’re starting with a blank slate:


Related posts:

When not to replace your floors 

What Colour Works with Orange Wood

How much Heavy Lifting can a Paint Colour Handle?


10 pins


  • Danielle Ashley says:

    I saw the very red flooring sample in the video (mine is called bloodwood) and was hoping Maria was going to talk about it but she didn’t. She does mention that it’s bossy like grey lvp but then gave color recommendations for whichever undertone gray has. I’ve already read the other linked article. I’m still wanting more info. Our hand holding. Lol

    • Maria Killam says:

      Yes well it’s not that you can’t use either of the paint colours I recommended if you have red floors, it’s that you should also repeat the colour of your floors in your decorating. I go into this in much greater detail in my 2 day workshops! Hope that helps, Maria

  • Fran W. says:

    Your color wheel is pure genius! I’ve used it so many times to determine exactly the right shade. Thank you!

  • Cate says:

    I have the color wheel and use it all the time. But I wanted to check the “curated undertone” paint list and the link didn’t work. I wonder if that could be checked/updated.

    I have learned sooo much from your expertise over the years and appreciate the expanded choices you’ve offered, allowing me see my home in new and more vibrant, connected ways.

    You are such a gift!

  • Maisy says:

    I really enjoy Maria’s videos (and blog,of course). The videos are put together so nicely, and I love the funny things like fast forwarding though time and Maria’s voice on high speed. Maria’s personality shines through, and of course, the content is awesome!

  • Janice says:

    This was a great video! I wish I had kept my light oak hardwood floors ( that had turned orangish over the years). I made the mistake of refinishing them in a dark charcoal – ugh. Unfortunately, I refinished them before I discovered you. I hope someday to refinish them back to a light or mid tone brown. On another note, Maria, I love your pink/orange argyle vest. Any chance you could provide details on it? lol.


  • Saundra says:

    In the video when mentioning that the Green Grey LVP flooring, you say that it could go with either the taupe or “green grey”? Did you mean to say it would go with the taupe paint or the complex cream paint option? I have concrete floors that lean Green Grey and am hoping to use a complex cream to warm things up.
    Thank you

  • Liz says:

    Thank you so much for your guidance! What white trim color would you pair with feather down or neutral ground if you wanted a contrast?

  • Maria Diakidis says:

    Hi Maria,
    I recently discovered your articles, online help etc. I think your ideas are amazing!! I think most of us are hesitant to add colour to the various rooms of our homes, but I love your ideas and the expertise you bring to so many topics involving the world of colour. In the past few months I have read many of your posts and as I go shopping, I try to apply and experiment with some of your advice. I have a question about grey flooring: We are planning another bathroom reno in a few months and I would like to use the 2-inch hexagon tiles with a grey Carrara look on the floors in our primary bathroom. Since we used them in our ensuite (only for the shower floor and niche) I chose to install them in our main bathroom and use the floor tile 12 x 24 with a Calcutta look as the tub surround to at least tie the 2 bathrooms together without mimicking everything. My question is: If I plan on having our double vanity painted using SW Accessible Beige and installing a countertop that coordinates with the floor, black framed mirrors and brushed brass bar lights and hardware (everything else, plumbing will be chrome as you have often mentioned), then what ideas do you have for a rug (SW Extra White Walls and trim, BTW). Should I stick to a monochromatic rug? or use the Adeline rug you mentioned in your post for grey floors? That way, if I want to add blues or green accents in the room in art, shower curtains, and accessories, I thought I could do add colour that way. What do you think? Anxiously awaiting your thoughts. PS. I’m ordering your colour wheel, too!!
    Maria D.

Leave a Reply