HOW TO DO DARK WALLS

HOW TO DO DARK WALLS

You've had months of dreaming. You have so much faith that decorating with dark paint is going to work out.  Not just that, you're going to LOVE it. Here's how to make sure that you do!

HOLD YOUR DECORATING NERVE 

That first coat of paint is scary, particularly if you're changing from a light colour to dark. The contrast is, well, such a contrast. You might find yourself having a wobble or three. Also hold on to the thought that the first coat doesn't look particularly great.  You'll start seeing the magic at coat three (or four). Stay strong!

DO SEVERAL COATS OF DARK PAINT

Yes, that’s right, do several coats of dark paint. Painting our living room was my first proper experience of decorating with a dark colour, and I found that the finish didn’t look great until the fourth coat.  Don't be tempted to stop at one coat, not even two. The depth isn't there. Go for at least three coats to get the full-on dramatic look you've been dreaming about. 

USE A DARK UNDERCOAT

Please forgive me for jumping around. But, yes, let’s re-wind. Start off by using a dark undercoat, before going in with your top colour. It makes the best base for the dark colour, particularly if your current wall colour is light. You could choose a specially made dark tones undercoat, or just a dark toned paint from a cheaper brand.

PAINT YOUR CEILING DARK TOO

Painting walls and ceiling in the same colour is becoming an increasingly popular look. That’s right, ceilings don’t have to be painted white! With dark walls, a white ceiling can sometimes be too much of a contrast. Whereas, painting the ceiling dark blends the lines and creates a very relaxed vibe.

RE-ASSESS YOUR ACCESSORIES

Accessories and art will look completely different. The pictures in our living room pop so much more on the dark backdrop. But, you may also find that you need more accessories in the room. A big expanse of dark wall often needs to be broken up, more so than it does with a light colour.  I'm much more in love with our living room now I've added some pictures behind the sofa. It could do with more, but all this takes time. 

Pictures and accessories can pop more against dark walls.

Pictures and accessories can pop more against dark walls.

INTRODUCE LIGHT COLOURS

Also, unless you're going for a super-dark look, you could also find that you need more light-coloured accessories and furniture. We brought in this mirror from another room to bring in some contrast and lighten things up. It also helps bounce some light around the room. 

Mirror-In-Dark-Painted-Living-Room.jpg

ADD MORE LIGHTS

This one sounds obvious, but I really didn’t appreciate how much darker the room would be - and I mean, literally darker.  We always used to have our pendant light dimmed right low and now it needs to be full blast. And even though our living room is teeny, we definitely need more than the three small lamps we have right now. But where we do have those lamps, it looks atmospheric and really stylish. More lamps are on my shopping list.

Keeping all these ideas in mind made me so much more confident the next time we decorated with dark paint.  I hope it helps you if you're thinking of taking the plunge. Are you going to do it?

Victoria x

P.S. If you’re not totally convinced dark colours are for you, why not check out my post with easy tips for picking out colour schemes. It might just decide it for you one way or the other.

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