I have come to the realization that it will never not be hot outside. Every morning, I carefully walk out onto my balcony while precariously balancing my laptop, phone, and an overflowing mug of hot coffee with the hopes that today will finally be the day when it’s pleasant enough to sit outside, even for just 30 minutes. But it never is and thus, I turn on my heels, spilling coffee onto my artificial turf rug (the only green space within a 20-minute walk of my apartment), and head back inside.
Spending all my time indoors means that, yes, I’m sacrificing a bronzed complexion and fresh air in favor of a room that’s perpetually at a comfortable 72℉. But it also means that I spend a lot of time staring at the walls, daydreaming about what shade of paint would look good in the room beyond “rental white.” And now that a handful of brands have announced their picks for the 2023 Color of the Year, my mind is running wild (because Lord only knows my body certainly won’t in this heat). Overlooking the fact that the once singular “color of the year” is now a collection of at least a dozen hues from brands like Valspar and HGTV Home by Sherwin-Williams, I find myself imagining my bathroom walls painted in Blue Arrow (“a cooled-down blue with a yellow undertone that brings a modern charm to any space,” according to Valspar) or a hallway colored with the conservatively-named Restrained Gold from HGTV Home by Sherwin-Williams.
The 2023 Color(s) of the Year range from muted neutrals like Valspar’s Ivory Brown, Cozy White, Holmes Cream, and Villa Grey—all of which are begging to be turned into a Jenni Kayne sweater—to warmer, bolder shades like Darkroom (the “official” Color of the Year from HGTV Home by Sherwin-Williams), Poetry Plum, and the aptly named Wall Street, a mostly grey hue that boasts the slightest undertone of financial security.
From Our Shop
From the network that convinced everyone to knock down their walls (and cover any that remain with shiplap) comes this paint color collaboration with Sherwin Williams. The line-up didn’t include specific descriptions for each color, so I took the liberty of writing them myself.
- Darkroom: The official HGTV Home by Sherwin Williams Color of the Year is this brown-black paint chip that will make that artsy kid who sits in the back of the bus finally feel seen.
- Cool Beige: If cottagecore is having its style moment, painting your walls the color of your grandpa’s New Balances is racing to the top of home décor trends.
- Restrained Gold: AKA old money gold. It’s a yellow-tan that can only be utilized if your last name is Rockefeller, Mellon, Hearst, or Rothschild. No need to flaunt it—just use it in your summer home.
- Natural Linen: For all those unnatural (shudders) shades of linen, this is destined to end up on the walls of fashion influencers who choose neutral or nothing.
- Hot Cocoa: Jonathan and Drew are teasing overheated homeowners everywhere with this milky chocolate shade. Is it December yet?
- Austere Grey: Are you so over those goofy grey hues that practically laugh at you when you walk down the hall? This stern shade of green-grey promises a cold shoulder and no respect for your work-life balance.
- Poetry Plum: Apples are out, plums are in. Soften up your crankiest English professor by (surprise!) painting their office this soothing shade of warm purple during finals week. They’ll definitely grade on a curve.
- Glamour: I swear I saw headphones from Kim Kardashian’s Beats by Dre collaboration in this pink-ish, mauve-ish, grey-ish shade of purple. The devil works hard, but Kris Jenner works harder.
- Pewter Green: If olive green still checks Facebook, Pewter Green is obsessing over #RushTok. This green hue is younger, hipper, and quite literally has cool undertones.
- Wall Street: Feeling blue about Dow Jones futures? This cool grey-blue color is right there with ya.
Bad news for me, but better news for serious DIY-ers: Valspar shared their own descriptions for each of their 12 colors of the year, meaning you can make a more educated color choice for your home.
- Ivory Brown: Soft and light, this natural color is calming, positive, and full of possibilities.
- Cozy White: A comfortable, warm white that naturally elevates a room when paired with earthy wood tones and neutrals.
- Gentle Violet: Youthful and sophisticated, this softened violet embodies harmony and connectivity when accented with colorful naturals.
- Blue Arrow: A cooled-down blue with a yellow undertone that brings a modern charm to any space.
- Flora: Sophisticated and charming, this shade helps us appreciate what we have in life.
- Desert Carnation: Naturally warm, this color that promotes comfort and self-expression with an elevated touch.
- Green Trellis: Inspired by nature when paired with modern elements, this color creates a look that has a contemporary charm.
- Rising Tide: An uplifting backdrop, tying a colorful eclectic aesthetic together in a room for a personalized look.
Holmes Cream: A classic, dependable tan that embraces sunlight, creating a welcoming environment.
Southern Road: Grounded and natural, this muted clay embraces a life of simplicity and contentment.
- Villa Grey: Natural and refined, this balanced neutral creates a clean interior for a stress-free aesthetic.
- Everglade Deck: A midnight blue that balances elegance and calm, creating a restorative space.