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Sherwin Williams Peppercorn SW 7674 Review

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Peppercorn SW 7674 is one of Sherwin Williams’s best-selling, top 50 paint colors. It’s a very dark neutral gray. It’s versatile and full of depth. This is one gray paint color that does not lack character.

Here we go again. A new day, a new paint color to review.

Hello and welcome.

If you have visited my site and read any of my paint color reviews, you have a good idea of what to expect. If you are new here then you are in for a real paint color treat. Basically, I go on and on about the paint color. But it is all (mostly) very useful information.

Let’s get into it.

Honestly, I cannot remember why I choose today’s paint color. I had it written down in my planner as my next review color, but I don’t remember what made me go with this one.

I suppose I don’t need any other reason other than this is a fantastic paint color.

The paint color I’m reviewing is:

PEPPERCORN SW 7674 SHERWIN WILLIAMS

STATS

  1. Color Collections: Purely Refined, Reasoned, Cool Neutrals, Top 50 Colors
  2. LRV: 10
  3. HUE FAMILY: Purple

I always like to share some statistics about the paint color. This is a way to get a good feel for the color and what it’s about.

A color collection is a group of paint colors that are organized together in a collection. Peppercorn is a part of a few different color collections on the Sherwin Williams website. The most notable being The Top 50 Paint Colors. That right there is pretty telling of the color. It means it’s a great color and it has a few fans.

Peppercorn has an LRV of 10. For those of you who are wondering what in the world LRV is here’s a brief explanation.

LRV or Light Reflectance Value is a measurement commonly used by design professionals that measures the amount of light reflected from and absorbed by a surface. LRVs range from 0 -100, with 100 being pure white and 0 being absolute black. A great article to read to learn more about LRV is Light Reflectance Value: What Do Those Numbers Mean?

Peppercorn, with an LRV of 10, won’t be the most light-reflecting paint color. It’s actually not going to reflect much light at all.

Finally, we come to hue family. Peppercorn is from the purple hue family.

This is always a very interesting and helpful tidbit of knowledge to know about a paint color. It allows you to know where the color comes from. Unlike undertones in which they are merely perspective, the paint color’s hue family stems from scientific data.


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PEPPERCORN COLOR STRIP

The color strip is the page on which a paint color is displayed in the paint deck.

Here are the paint colors that are on the same paint color strip as Peppercorn::

  • PASSIVE SW 7064
  • ARGOS SW 7065
  • GRAY MATTERS SW 7066
  • TIN LIZZIE SW 9163
  • CITYSCAPE SW7067
  • GRIZZLE GRAY SW 7068
  • PEPPERCORN SW 7674

KEEP TRACK OF YOUR PAINT COLORS

painting tracker graphic

WHAT COLOR IS PEPPERCORN FROM SHERWIN WILLIAMS?

Peppercorn is a dark gray paint color. It is one step above black. So is dark but not the darkest. You can say it has a slight charcoal feel to it.

While Peppercorn is a dark gray paint color, it is actually quite soft and not harsh at all. It has a lot of depth to it which ultimately gives it a good foot to stand on.

Some designers will even go as far as saying it’s a “true gray”. I say take that with a grain of salt and do not solely rely on that when making a decision on whether or not Peppercorn Is the gray paint color for you. You have to sample the color in your room to know for sure if it will look like a “true gray’ in your space.

DOES SW PEPPERCORN LOOK BLUE?

No, I wouldn’t say SW Peppercorn looks fully blue, nor would I say its looks like blue paint color. As I mentioned earlier, it’s a dark gray paint color.

For the most part, It does stay on the neutral side. Keep in mind that it comes from the purple hue family so chances are in unbalanced lighting you can see a hint of purple or even a purple-blue.

Overall, it is not a blue paint color, it is gray.

Now before you run out and grab a gallon, you need to sample it first. I know I just said it looks like a neutral gray but there is always a chance it may look different than you expected.

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WHAT COLOR FAMILY IS PEPPERCORN?

Peppercorn is from the purple hue family.

Don’t let that scare you. I know many people a very fearful of having any type of purple show up in their gray.

Yes, Peppercorn is from the purple hue family but it is not a puplre paint color. I will be 100% with you though. There is a chance that there can be a moment or flash of purple show up in unbalanced lighting, but I promise it won’t look like you have purple walls.

WHAT UNDERTONES DOES PEPPERCORN SW 7674 HAVE?

OK, this is always the most asked questing concerning any paint color and it’s a bit tricky to answer.

Undertones are merely subjective What you say may not be what someone else sees. And the reason these undertones or colors appear is because of the lighting and elements around them.

In regards to the undertones or rather the colors that may be seen in unbalanced lighting, Peppercorn has times where it can flash purple or even slightly blue.

IS SHERWIN WILLIAMS PEPPERCORN A COOL PAINT COLOR?

Yes, Peppercorn is considered to be a cool-toned paint color.

A great way to identify if a paint color is warm or cool-toned is to compare it to another paint color.

For instance, let’s place Peppercorn side by side with Gauntlet Gray. You can indeed see how Gauntlet Gray is more of a warm-toned gray and Peppercorn is cool-toned gray.

SW Peppercorn vs SW Gauntlet Gray

MORE INTO WARM TONES? CHECK THESE PAINT COLORS OUT:

SHERWIN WILLIAMS PEPPERCORN AND LIGHTING

Light plays an influential role in the way a color looks and can change the appearance of essentially any color. For this reason, it’s a good idea to be familiar with the lighting condition of the room you are choosing the right paint color for

North-facing rooms – Light in North-facing rooms comes off cooler and sometimes somewhat bluish. Lighter colors appear more muted, while bolder colors will show up, or appear better.

 South-facing rooms– In South-facing rooms, there tends to be a consistently bright light throughout the day. Warm and cool tones work with south-facing light. This light intensifies colors, so darker colors will seem more vivid while softer colors will almost look like they are radiating.

East-facing rooms– East-facing rooms have the brightest light in the mornings, with a yellow-orange tone.  If an east-facing room will be used regularly in the evenings, going with a warm palette will help to offset the lack of natural light.

West-facing rooms- Early evening is when West-facing rooms have the most favorable light. Warmer tones might seem a bit strong because of the red-orange tones the light gives off. However, if the main use of the room is in the mornings, the colors won’t seem as intense.

As much as lighting plays a significant part in how a paint color can look at times, there are other elements you simply cannot forget about.

For example, the color of your decor, furniture, fixtures, cabinetry, and floors. These are all elements that can affect the way a paint color will look in your room.

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WHAT ARE THE BEST LIGHT BULBS TO USE?

Just as natural light affects paint colors so does artificial lighting.

The color of the light bulbs you use will impact how a paint color will look in a room. And unfortunately, it’s an essential detail that is often overlooked.

With the variety of light bulbs available and it can become overwhelmingly confusing. I mean what really soft white and bright white?

Thankfully, it becomes easier once you know a little bit about light bulbs.

For reference, light color or light appearance is measured on the Kelvin (K)temperature scale. Lower Kelvin numbers mean more yellow light; the higher the Kelvin number the whiter or bluer light.

Remember, lower Kelvin (K) numbers = yellow light, Higher Kelvin (K) numbers = white/blueish light

I always recommend using this type of light bulb.

Be cautious of the light bulb names such as “daylight” or warm light”. I’d advise against picking a light bulb by its name.

Instead, always check the package for actual facts. This allows you to choose the best bulb for you.

Don’t forget, as much as lighting plays a major part in how a paint color will look at times, there are other determinants to be aware of. For instance, decor, furniture, fixtures, cabinetry, and floors. These are all elements that can affect and/or influence the way a paint color will look in your room.

WAIT! Before you start painting make sure you have the best painting tools to make your job easier. It will take hours off your painting times!

WHAT’S THE BEST WAY TO SAMPLE PEPPERCORN?

You know how I feel about testing paint samples, it is a must! Believe it or not, the biggest painting mistake you can make is not sampling paint colors.

Sampling your paint colors is so important because it is the only way you can truly see how a paint color will look in your home.

Now that you know you need to sample your paint colors, what is the best way to sample them?

Samplize Peel & Stick Paint samples of course!

Instead of physically going to your nearest paint store to grab your samples, you need to try  Samplize Peel & Stick paint samples.

Why should you try Samplize?

  • Super affordable
  • Mess-free
  • Non-damaging
  • Made with real manufacturer paint
  • Displays color just like a wall
  • Environmental friendly
  • Reusable
Samplize Swatch

These peel & stick paint samples are super affordable and allow you to test a paint color in all different areas of a room without the mess of a traditional paint sample! 

 You know how I feel about testing paint colors, it’s a must! 

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WHAT IS THE BEST TRIM COLOR TO USE WITH SW PEPPERCORN?

Personally, I feel like SW Peppercorn looks absolutely fantastic with a bright white trim like BM Chantilly Lace or SW Extra White. Since Peppercorn is dark and Chantilly Lace is bright white, it creates a beautiful contrast between the colors.

SW Pure White is another great white option that is not as crisp as Extra White or Chantilly Lace.

READ MORE: THE BEST WHITE PAINT COLORS FOR TRIM

Don’t think white is the only option for trim. You can also go with a dark monochromatic look and use Peppercorn on both walls and trim. You can slightly change the look of the trim by choosing a different sheen or finish. By doing so you will get a slight variation between the two.

If that seems too dark, try using a lighter gray on your trim. This will give you a similar look but not as dark.


Don’t start painting until you have the right tools!

SHOP MUST HAVE PAINTING TOOLS


WHERE TO USE SW PEPPERCORN?

Peppercorn is such a fantastic Sherwin Williams paint color. You can use it practically anywhere. Sure it is a darker color and it most likely shouldn’t be used in dark rooms with not much light but there are so many other ways to use this wonderful paint color.

  • Kitchen Cabinets / Kitchen Island
  • Accent Wall
  • Shiplap
  • Bedroom
  • Built-ins

KITCHEN ISLAND

This may be one of the best ways to use SW Peppercorn, on kitchen cabinets or kitchen islands.

This dark gray pairs so well with all types of finishes and styles, that it really works beautifully in a kitchen.

Tri-Son Painting Plus, trisoncabinetdivision on Instagram, uses Peppercorn on this kitchen island and it is a show stopper. It’s the perfect dark gray paint color.

Peppercorn paint kitchen Island

BUILT-INS

SW Peppercorn entryway

Beth @houseonyough on Instagram used Peppercorn SW 7674 on her built-ins. The color looks like it was meant to be, simply gorgeous.

The dark paint color is contrasted beautifully by her wood trim. I think this is the perfect pairing.

READ MORE: PAINT COLORS TO GO WITH HONEY OAK

ACCENT WALL / SHIPLAP

@Mcclaryranch. on Instagram opted to paint their accent wall with SW Peppercorn. I am pretty much obsessed with it.

The dark wall contrasted with the light walls just pulls the room together. It makes such a stunning statement.

peppercorn accent wall

BEDROOM WALLS

Peppercorn bedroom walls

Laurie @salalitten and @comeonindesigns on Instagram used Peppercorn in her bedroom. Is this not the perfect room for this color?

The room has a sufficient amount of lighting for the color to not be overbearing. Also being paired with the lighter colored furnishings and decor, this room is the perfect example of how to use a dark paint color like Peppercorn on the walls.

IS SHERWIN WILLIAMS PEPPERCORN A GOOD EXTERIOR COLOR?

Yes! Peppercorn is an amazing exterior paint color. I don’t know about you but lately, I have been seeing a trend of darker paint colors on the exterior of homes, and I and here for it.

Peppercorn exterior
via @eighthandeverett on Instagram

The reason Peppercorn works on the exterior is that it has a good amount of depth to it to hold up to the bright direct sunlight.

You can also see in this picture that the house is in the shade which brings out a bit of the cooler blue tone that can show up in Peppercorn.

SW Peppercorn Exterior
via @paintingpremier on Instagram

Finally, below are pictures of the same house painted SW Peppercorn, one at night and one in the daytime.

SW Peppercorn Exterior with orange door
via @innovative.quarters on Instagram
Peppercorn exterior - night
via @innovative.quarters on Instagram

When it comes to paint colors on the exterior, they will always look lighter. This is because of the direct sunlight.

COLORS THAT GO WITH SHERWIN WILLIAMS PEPPERCORN

Since it’s a dark gray Peppercorn is an easy color to create color palettes for. Neutral colors are always easier to pair.

Some of the colors that look great with it are:

  • Unique Gray
  • Mysterious Mauve
  • Starry Night
  • Repose Gray
  • Passive
  • Extra White

WHAT IS THE BENJAMIN MOORE EQUIVALENT TO SHERWIN WILLIAMS PEPPERCORN?

If you are looking for an exact Benjamin Moore dupe to Sherwin Williams Peppercorn, I hate to break it to you but you aren’t going to find one.

I have yet to find a paint replica between the brands. But that is a good thing! It just means there are that many more original paint colors out there to choose from. I’m trying to live the glass is half full kind of life, your know?

But getting back to the issue at hand, there is one Benjamin Moore color that is similar to Peppercorn according to the spectatorial data,

  • CW-685 AMBLER SLATE – Benjamin Moore Williamsburg Color Collection
  • Hue Family: Purple Blue
  • LRV: 11.78
SW Peppercorn vs BM Ambler Slate

You can see that these two colors are very similar. AMBLER Slate has a touch more blue to it.

Honestly, they are both gorgeous colors, and if you like the one you will most likely like the other.

I know what you are thinking, can’t I just color match with Benjamin Moore’s paint? Yes, you can but proceed with caution.

Paint manufacturers use different formulas to create their paint colors, so if you try to color match the colors won’t exactly match. If you are feeling gutsy enough to try it I firmly suggest getting a small sample can to start off with. It’s better to make sure you like the color before you move forward.

Follow these helpful painting tips and avoid these mistakes to get the job done right!

PAINT COLOR COMPARISONS

I find it hugely beneficial to compare colors to one another. It really helps you see the tone of a color, how light or dark it is, etc. Color comparison is really a great way to help you pick a paint color.

I found a few paint colors to compare to Peppercorn, let’s see how they stack up!

SHERWIN WILLIAMS PEPPERCORN VS CYBERSPACE

SW Peppercorn vs SW Cyberspace
  • SW Cyberspace has an LRV of 6 a bit lower than Peppercorn’s LRV of 10
  • Cyberspace is from the Purple Blue hue family
  • Peppercorn is lighter than Cyberspace
  • Cyberspace is a bit more of a blue its more saturated
  • Peppercorn is a near neutral

SHERWIN WILLIAMS PEPPERCORN VS IRON ORE

SW Peppercorn vs SW Iron Ore
  • Iron Ore has an LRV of 6, lower than Peppercorn at 10
  • SW Iron Ore is from the Green Yellow hue family
  • Peppercorn is the lighter of the two colors
  • Iron Ore is more saturated

SHERWIN WILLIAMS PEPPERCORN VS GAUNTLET GRAY

SW Peppercorn vs SW Gauntlet Gray
  • Gauntlet Gray has an LRV of 17, higher than Peppercorn’s LRV of 10
  • SW Gauntlet Gray comes from the Yellow hue family
  • Peppercorn is the darker and less saturated color
  • Gauntlet Gray is a warmer gray

SHERWIN WILLIAMS PEPPERCORN VS URBANE BRONZE

SW Peppercorn vs SW Urbane Bronze
  • SW Urbane Bronze has an LRV of 8, only a bit lower than Peppercorn
  • Urbane Bronze is from the Yellow hue family
  • Peppercorn is darker and more of a gray
  • Urbane Bronze is more saturated and is warmer toned

SHERWIN WILLIAMS PEPPERCORN VS BENJAMIN MOORE KENDALL CHARCOAL

SW Peppercorn vs BM Kendall Charcoal
  • Kendall Charcoal has an LRV of 14.61, a tad bit higher than Peppercorn
  • Benjamin Moore Kendall Charcoal comes from the Yellow hue family
  • Peppercorn is the darker and less saturated gray
  • Kendall Charcoal is warmer in tone

SHERWIN WILLIAMS PEPPERCORN VS BEHR CRACKED PEPPER

SW Peppercorn vs Behr Cracked Pepper
  • Behr Cracked Pepper has an LRV of 8
  • Peppercorn is lighter
  • Cracked Pepper comes from the Purple Blue hue family
  • Cracked Pepper is slightly more saturated

SHERWIN WILLIAMS PEPPERCORN VS BM WROUGHT IRON

SW Peppercorn vs BM Wrought Iron
  • Benjamin Moore Wrought Iron has an LRV of 8.17
  • Wrought Iron Comes from the Purple Blue hue family
  • Peppercorn is a lighter gray and less saturated.
  • Wrought Iron is actually very similar to Behr Cracked Pepper

KEEP TRACK OF YOUR PAINT COLORS

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RECAP

I know you were just given a crap load of information, so to give you a quick refresher on what we learned about Sherwin Williams Peppercorn:

  • has an LRV of 10
  • comes from the Purple hue family
  • Color Collections: Purely Refined, Reasoned, Cool Neutrals, Top 50 Colors
  • it’s considered a dark gray, not blue paint color
  • it is a cooler-toned color
  • looks fantastic on the exterior of the home
  • can potentially show blue or purple in certain unbalanced lighting
  • it’s a great dark gray color for kitchen cabinets
  • can be a softer color alternative to a black paint color
  • pairing it with a bright white trim will give the room and clean and crisp feel
  • the best way to sample is by using SAMPLIZE Peel & Stick Paint Samples

FINAL THOUGHTS

I’m a fan of Sherwin Williams Peppercorn. It’s honestly a fabulous dark gray paint color.

It is everything a dark gray paint color should be. The fact that a lot of designers label it as a “true gray” speaks for itself.

It works wonderfully with many other paint colors and can be used just about anywhere. It’s also on Sherwin Williams’s top 50 paint colors list, so we know it’s a favorite.

If you are looking for a dark paint color that isn’t quite black you will love Peppercorn.

Want to see for yourself? Grab a SAMPLIZE PEEL & STICK PAINT SAMPLE.

Planning on tackling a painting project on your own?  Use these tips to help you paint your room like a pro.

Do you want to paint like a pro?

Get the painting tools the pros use.

Drop cloths are a must for any painting project. Paint is messy! Save yourself the hassle of unnecessary cleanup by using drop cloths. You’ll be happy you did.

A high-quality paint brush will go a long way. The same goes for paint rollers. You want to use tools that will work with you, making your painting job easier.

Looking for more color options? Grab your own Benjamin Moore fan deck

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