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Interiors 101: How to work the 'dark colour' bedroom trend

All you need to know about working the dark colour bedroom trend without creating a space that’s overbearing or oppressive.
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We all need a change every once in a while. And when the time comes to give your bedroom that long-overdue visual refresh, the first thing that might spring to mind is white paint. After all, it’s a given that white walls and a clean, bright look will help give your bedroom new lease of life — isn’t it?

But, while there’s nothing wrong with turning your boudoir into a literal blank slate, sometimes all that negative space can feel a little soulless.

With the revival of rich and dark bedroom tones it’s time to create that alluring, calm, cocoon-like bedroom you’ve always wanted, but have never quite dared to go for…

How to choose your dark tonal walls

Finding the ideal dark tone can be a long and difficult process, but don’t be disheartened. This is where you can get personal with your room and really get in touch with your own sense of style. Plus it can be a lot of fun, when you get into it. Why settle for same old white when there are so many different rich shades to explore? From caviar black (granted, probably best for an accent wall), to squid ink and grey on grey, you can go to town on sumptuous shades if you’re willing to be just a little more daring with your décor.

It might seem daunting at first, (what if it feels cave like or overly oppressive?!), but as the light in a room changes throughout the day, so will the colour of the walls. Aka, a gorgeous shade of dark grey will feel dynamic and gorgeous as it catches the light at different kinds of day. And if you get the tone just right, and complement it with uplifting furniture and accessories, you’ll be left with a room full of intriguing style and a gorgeous, rich finished look.

If you’re still not completely convinced, though, don’t worry. It’s fine to take things slow with such a drastic change, so why not start with an accent wall? If you fall in love with your chosen colour, you can introduce it to the rest of the room at a later date.

When it comes to what type of paint to go for, it has to be matte. Compared to its gloss counterpart, it delivers a smooth, subtle look and will cover any imperfections, plus it reflects light subtly around the room. Next, be sure to focus on quality. Pinching pennies when it comes to paint is a big no-no, especially for more complex colour schemes.

Another key bedroom feature to be aware of is your ceilings. If they’re low, then paint the trim the same colour as the walls to trick the eye into making the wall appear taller and wider.

Breaking the space up with furnishings and accessories

Once you’ve taken the plunge and decided which colour scheme works for you, the next stage is to choose your furnishings. First things first, as the most prominent feature in the room, it’s really important not to underestimate the power getting the bed right.

Always keep in mind size when working with richer wall colours. While it might be tempting to go for a massive bed, be wary that particularly large items of furniture might not be the best bet in a room with dark walls. A queen size bed would probably be a safer option, as it won’t eat up too much space – which you’ll need plenty of to ensure your dark-toned walls don’t feel overwhelming.

If you’ve decided on an accent wall for your room wall instead of going all out, the best place to put your double bed would be with the headboard in the middle of this, to bring the space together.

Now for accessories. No matter which inky wall shade you go for, it’s wise to break up the space with a range of lighter tones. Think creams, very pale greens, pastel pinks and always try to incorporate at least a dash of pure white to really give light chance to work its way around the room, reflecting off a few focal points. You could go for floaty white linen curtains, white photo frames or even a white wicker laundry basket.

When it comes to textiles, some of the most popular choices for dark tonal bedrooms include silk and velvet, which work well if you’re going for that opulent look. But if that all sounds too sumptuous for your taste, don’t shy away from more muted, natural textures such as soft cottons, linens and wools. Layer up on your dark colour scheme with teal throws, plum coloured cushions and a deep turquoise lamp shades.

Open up the space with lighting

Going for a dark colour scheme means getting the lighting in your bedroom right is more important than ever. From soft bedside lamps to corner floor lamps, layer the lighting for the best results.

If your bedroom is small in size, or you’re simply worried the dark colour scheme could make it look cramped, a good way to double up on the light in the bedroom is by placing lamps in front of mirrors. This will help to reflect light around the room, giving it a generally brighter, more open feel. The same goes for enhancing natural light around the bedroom, make sure you strategically place mirrors so that they reflect light from any windows and in turn, increase the feeling of depth in the room.

Going dark doesn’t have to be daunting. And trust us, it’s myth that it’s never a good idea to paint your bedroom in a moody shade of teal or gunmetal grey or deep, deep blue. These colours are fabulous and underrated, and understated too! So while it may be the case that dark walls are a no-go-area for interior design scaredy-cats… that’s certainly not the case for us.