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How To Pull Off Black In Your Home 


Black might not be the first colour you think of when it comes to decorating your house. In fact, it’s got a bit of a rep as a depressing colour which can make your rooms feel gloomy and small. However, the reality is quite different. When done properly using black in your home can add a really sophisticated and cosy feel to your rooms.

But if you’re not much of an interior designer or you’re feeling cautious about choosing such a dark colour for your home, it can be easier to avoid black and stick with a more classic and neutral palette. But we’re here to tell you that this dark shade can be really effective. So if you’re planning on redecorating, here’s how you can pull off black in your home.

Preparation Is key

Dark paint colours show more imperfections on your walls than pale colours. Prepare the walls accordingly. Pull any nails and picture hangers out, fill any holes and allow the wall to dry completely before carefully sanding smooth. Sanded areas can show on dark paint jobs, so be sure to consider the texture of the wall and try to get as consistent a finish as possible.

It’s also wise to remove any plug socket covers and switches and apply a good quality, bleed proof masking tape to the ceiling and woodwork.

Don’t use black for everything

Using black in your home is about creating contrast. So be careful not to get carried away with dark paint colours. When you first begin experimenting with black decor it’s a good idea to choose a feature wall, alcove or chimney breast to paint in black and then accessorise around this using darker shades. This eliminates the need to paint everything black and make your room feel gloomy.

It also means you can add other aspects to your feature wall. For example, bold or delicate artwork can add a lovely contrast to the dark colour. Alternatively you might opt for a mirror or metallic wall hanging that really compliments the black paintwork.

You need contrast & balance

To make a black room work, you need contrast – contrasting colours and finishes. The walls should be painted in matt black paint, while the woodwork should have a gloss finish – one absorbs, and one reflects. If you’re going to use dark colours for the walls or units in your home then you need to make sure you get the balance right. If you fill a room with nothing but black walls and dark colours, then it’s going to feel a little claustrophobic, but if you work hard to get the balance just right, black really can make your home look elegant and sophisticated.

You can strike this balance by using different textures and colours for your surfaces and furniture. You should also incorporate some light colours to offset the dark, you could even add a splash of colour with some bold statement pieces like a mustard velvet accent chair or a colourful rug.

Consider your furniture

You might only want to make one wall black, in which case you can be more playful with your furniture, adding black and darker shades into your room in this way. For example, you could paint one feature wall black and tie this in with the rest of the room by purchasing a black sofa or table.

That said, just because you’re redecorating it doesn’t necessarily mean you want to buy all new furniture. If that’s the case you need to take into consideration the colour palette of your existing furniture and how you can match the colour scheme when using black in your home.

Black rooms love texture

Painting your walls in such an atmospheric colour creates the perfect stage for textures that create depth, dimension and add contrast. Think richly grained woods, gilded mirrors, rattan, plush velvets and light-catching crystals.

Cooper and brass look fantastic against black. Use a combination of polished, matt and hammered metals – they capture the light beautifully and create a luxurious atmosphere.

Take it to the floor

When we said all or nothing, we meant it. It might sound crazy but having an ebonized floor or huge black iridescent Persian rug will only enhance the room further. Everything in the space will appear to float, and full focus will be on all the possessions you love.

Use patterns sparingly

Black rooms are inherently dramatic, introducing too many patterns can make the room feel cluttered and overdone. Stick to one or two patterns, such as a striking rug featuring a geometric design or bold monochrome stripes and from there focus on textures that add depth such as richly grained wood, metals and rattan, and fabrics such as velvet, linen, and suede. While this usually makes a statement in a room, dark rooms are already dramatic enough without needing to overcompensate with bold patterns.

Lush greenery

Well-chosen plants, artfully displayed, will enhance a black rooms unique look and make it feel healthier and more connected with nature. Plants have been proven to help reduce stress, create a feeling of well-being and improve air quality.

Adding leafy green ferns, yuccas and plants in dark or copper pots gives a black room an exotic and sensual feel. A faceted glass terrarium filled with succulents will look beautiful on a coffee table or hung on the wall. Plants can be as expressive as a work of art and putting them against a black backdrop only intensifies a plant’s gorgeous green foliage.

Architectural detailing

Moulded skirtings, architraves and cornices, along with decorative ceiling roses add interest and depth to a black room. As previously mentioned, black rooms need texture. A featureless room is at risk of looking dull and can benefit significantly from the addition of some decorative features if they are not already present.

Edward Sloane

Edward is the managing director of Sloane & Sons Stylish Chairs. He is an expert in quality, comfortable upholstered chairs.


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