Monday, October 13, 2008

Dark Rooms 101

Most people, when painting a room, think of going with a light color, not a dark blue, dark brown or even black. Dark paint colors are a bold choice, and as they are unusual, we are drawn to them. They are often good for small spaces, surprisingly enough. Designer John Barman says about the room above, "You're swept away by the blue and have no sense of the size of the room."

Moises Esquenazi used Farrow and Ball Mahogany paint.

Living Etc. The furniture in the room make this look more industrial.

Todd Romano. I love this room; it looks so cozy yet sophisticated with the rich blue walls and thick mouldings.

Australian Vogue Living. What a great gallery wall--looks so organic.

Carol Prisant used contrasting mouldings that add depth to the wall in this small room.

Elle Decor. This room looks pretty large and the windows add lots of light to it. I love how the walls curve up into the ceiling.

Leta Austin Foster. The dark color used here blends so well with the different colored ethnic floral patterns.

Metropolitan Home. The walls as well as the floor are painted a dark color. Again the use of the mouldings really adds depth to the room.

Jeffrey Bilhuber uses a dark chocolate brown. The glossiness of it reflects the light coming in from the window.

House to Home UK. I like how the black shade repeats in the next room to lead you through the space. NOT loving the Christmas lights on the floor though.

Katie Ridder. I love this little room with navy blue paint.

Markham Roberts. Dark floor and dark walls!

Markham Roberts. This room looks so New England-y and He even uses the dark blue paint in the fireplace.

Jeffrey Bilhuber uses dark paint in a larger setting with natural materials like a sisal carpet and stone fireplace.

I really likes these looks--they're fun and very bold. Thoughts? Has anybody done this in their own home?

Alicia B.


Raina said...

WOWWEE! What a thorough post! I love the jolt of pink in the otherwise serene room (#2 photo).

I've never been able to convince a client to go dark with paint. I did once specify a black wallpaper with a glorious Moghul design in a dining room and the client adored it.

viera said...

Always loved dark colours mostly grey shades. Carol Prisand is great.

My Notting Hill said...

Love all these dark rooms, especially the Markham Roberts pics. Just found you via Washington Post - congrats!

erin@designcrisis said...

Wow, what a fantastic round up! I'm a HUGE fan of dark paint because it adds so much drama to a room.

London Calling said...

Great post! Call me crazy but I'm planning to paint a bathroom black.

fauxfinish123 said...

Hi - I love your blog - and I especially loved your comments and pictures about using dark colors. I am a fan. I wrote an article for an online design magagine that you might want to check out. Go to It's a great site. Go to interior design - and scroll down to see the various articles. One is on "Don't Be Afraid of the Dark" written by me - Linda-Marie Leyble. Hope you like the article


Alicia B Blogs said...

Linda! I'd love to see your article--I can't seem to find it. Please email me at

Melvetica said...

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