Decorating With Dark Colors – How to Do It in Any Size Room

Happy New Year Everyone! With each new year, we become immediately excited to refresh and renew all the things. 👐 Those Christmas decorations come down and our house feels empty and quite frankly, a little sad. We love to read up on the upcoming decorating trends and see what catches our eye. In 2021 and continuing into 2022, we have seen an explosion in decorating with dark colors. Dark and Moody is everywhere with deep greens, rich charcoals, extra dark blues and bold blacks. (Check out this list of favorited dark paint colors too!)

Honestly, we have been slightly obsessed with the dark color trend and really wanted to use it in our own home. We’ve also been around the block a few times and know that darker colors can make a room appear smaller when done incorrectly. It can also literally make it more difficult to see if there isn’t an adequate amount of light to compensate, whether that’s through natural window light or fixtures.

But have no fear! We’ve found that it can totally be incorporated with some slight variations so that the change isn’t quite as extreme. Check out these tips and tricks below to get your design wheels turning. 🙂

Choose the Lightest Version of Your “Dark” Color 

All the color swatches you bring back home before choosing your color can be overwhelming, and a hard decision to make. Once you do pick a dark color that works for you, do a little backpedaling. This is especially important for those of you who are really on the fence about decorating with dark colors. In our experience, paint ALWAYS looks darker once applied and dried. And if you will be painting all of the walls in a room, then going a few shades lighter might be the best option.

Painted Accent Wall

Add Dark Colors to One Wall Only

This leads us to the next idea. If you really want to “go big or go home” in terms of darkness, you could always apply it to just one wall only. Choose a wall that makes the most sense in terms of room design, and focal points. Pick a wall that accentuates what you already have going on and grabs the attention of your guests.

Contrast Dark Colors with Lighter Room Elements

In many cases you may want to avoid making everything dark. Dark walls, dark furniture, limited windows, dark accent pieces… well that can feel like walking into a deep dark hole. Lighter furniture, accessories and wall décor can add a nice pop to the deeper tone. We always appreciate a good black and white color scheme for a classic home. 

Pick the Right Room to Go Dark

The next trick is to simply choose the right room. There is something really fabulous about a lighter, more airy living room or kitchen space, and then decorating some of the other rooms in your home with dark colors. A room that benefits from a more intimate vibe such as a bedroom or dining room is the perfect spot to try out the trend. It’s amazing how powerful colors are and how they affect our moods by simply walking into a room.

Dark Colored Dining Room

Go Half & Half

Another brilliant way to go dark is by painting the lower half of the walls dark, and the upper half white. The white will seamlessly flow into the ceiling assuming it’s also white and still leave an airy vibe. We love the look of a dark color combined with white bead board or any other type of paneling for a refined, clean look.

Non-Committal Paint

If at the end of the day you still feel uneasy about going dark, just don’t choose anything that commits you 100% to the color. Dark kitchen cabinets or expensive furniture pieces make it more difficult to change your mind if it ends up not really being your thing. But if it’s just a coat of paint, then it wont be as big of a deal to change in terms of finances. We’re confident with a little direction, you’ll fall in love with your home all over again with the help of some rich, eye-catching dark color!

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