Earlier this week we made a post all about improvements you can make to your bedroom in order to get a better night’s sleep, one such improvement was to paint the room a darker shade. Which got us thinking about just how fantastic, all room types can look when given a dark make-over.
Now we know that the concept of using a dark colour scheme for a room may seem rather unusual to some, in fact if you are a fan of minimalist stylings and have painted all the walls of your home stark white or you love your coastal kitchen in its eggshell blue, the idea of painting a room a deep colour could seem completely alien and maybe just plain wrong! But, bear with us for a moment, and let us sing the virtues of moody colours.
Now, let’s get it out in the open to begin with. Dark colours are not always the right choice, for instance; if you’ve got a small room with little or no natural light sources, which you want to feel bright and open then painting it a dark colour probably isn’t the best choice (although it could work well with some clever contrasting). But done right, a dark colour scheme can make a room feel intimate, luxurious and cosy; what the Danish would call 'Hygge' — a concept which has become a buzzword for interior designers around the world.
Dark colours aren't always inductive of a dark room either, in large rooms with lots of natural light picking a deeper colour for the walls can actually accentuate the room’s natural brightness and airiness and make it feel less Spartan than it would with a lighter colour.
Use dark colours to contrast, decorating a room in a dramatic colour, works spectacularly when contrasted with light (or bright) furniture and fittings. You can accentuate elements of the room such as fireplaces, window wills, skirting boards and moulded ceilings by decorating them in a crisp bright colour such as white. This can further be built upon by adding light or vibrant furniture to it.
Make your walls beautifully characterful. Dark walls make a room inherently intriguing so and add focus to object and ornaments highlight a coffee table or mantelpiece with a few antique curios or even just a couple of candlesticks. Materials like copper, brass, silver and gold all appear brighter in such a room, and can really set an area off this means you can highlight a particular area of the room to add some interest by merely adding a mirror or metallic picture frame.
Using dark colours it’s easy to turn a rather unremarkable hallway a rich colour paired with a selection of artwork in white frames will suddenly transform the room in your own, little art gallery.
Think about the lighting in the room so you can use it to your advantage, where does natural light enter in the day? Dark coloured rooms with lots of natural light exaggerate the brightness of the outside making the room feel cheery, and large while maintaining a cosy feel.
For the evenings consider where would be the optimum location to place artificial lighting. Dark colours create a sophisticated and intimate ambiance, and carefully placed lamps can create brooding shadows that add to this. For the ceiling lights you don’t want to wash out the intimate effect by only having the option of using powerful task lights, if you can have any conventional light switches replaced with dimmer switches, so you can adjust the brightness of the room to a suitable level depending on whether, you’re unwinding with a glass of wine, reading on the sofa, or doing a more intensive activity such as cleaning or working out in front of the television.
Finally, remember that the actual colour (no matter how dark in tone) of a room can have an effect on its overarching mood. Interior designers tend to advise that rich reds tend to boost the energy of a room, and apparently the appetite. So they are stellar choices for living and dining rooms as well as kitchens. Velvety blues and dark greens are considered calming and reminiscent of nature — this means they suit all rooms but work particularly well for studies, bedrooms and bathrooms. Brooding blacks and greys give a room depth, so can make them seem larger and give an air of elegance.
If you’re unsure if a dark colour will work for a room in your room, Opun’s network of Trade Partners includes a wide array of decorators and interior designers who will find the perfect hue for you.