With Halloween happening tomorrow, I was in the mood to talk about decorating with black. We all know that black is a classic in fashion, but what about home interiors?Throughout the decades the use of black in decorating has fluctuated, but it’s always been present. Just like the timelessness of slinky black dress, decorating with black is classic and makes a statement. Currently bold, saturated colours are the rage. It makes sense then, that black would become a forefront in interior design. In light of that, here are 5 living room design ideas for decorating with black that are sure to transform your living room into a showpiece.
First and foremost, find your inspiration. It could be a piece of art, a photograph, wallpaper or fabric…anything really. It doesn’t have to be just one thing; it can be many, so gather samples or pics of your inspirations to help you visualize your desired design. Personally, I like to use Pinterest to store all of my inspirations so that I can refer back to them easily. Or, if I’m feeling extra creative or I want to help a client envision a design, I’ll create a mood board like the one below. Keeping your inspirations on hand helps you to stay focused so that you achieve what you set out to do.
Decide on a Style
Now that you have all of your living room design ideas and inspirations on hand, you should be able to see a trend toward a specific style. Black lends itself well to modern, contemporary, Hollywood regency, eclectic and industrial designs very well. These are just a few. If you’re not sure how to use black within your desired style, do some research. Doing so will help you to remain true to the style, thus help you to create an authentic design that will have your friends gasping. Here are a few living room design ideas using black in different styles for a quick reference.
Determine your Boldness
Since black is fully saturated, it is bold and can be intense. Determine your level of comfort with it before proceeding with any of your living room design ideas. If you’re super comfortable with it, you can make a bold statement by painting your walls black or choosing a black based wallpaper. If that’s a bit of a reach for you, then focus on using black furnishings and flooring. And, if that’s still a bit much, then choose black art, décor and light fixtures to accent your space, rather than dominate it.
Quick Tip #1 – Using an abundance of black in a room (eg. on the walls) can make a space feel smaller – just like that slinky black dress;). Avoid using black on all walls if you have a small space to start with or you may end up feeling a bit claustrophobic. Consider an accent wall instead.
Quick Tip #2 – Dark colours can make a space feel…well, dark – obviously. Make sure the use of light in your space is proportionate to your use of black. Contrary to popular belief, a black room can still be well lit if appropriate lighting is chosen. Educate yourself on lumens or talk to a lighting specialist to help you determine how much light you’ll need for your space. Check out House Plans Helper’s lighting calculator to help you.
Shop for Furnishings & Decor
Once you’ve determined your bold factor, you can start shopping for furniture, art, accessories, lighting and wallpaper if you choose. Consider your style preference and the essence of it when making your choices so that you stay true to the characteristics of the style. Again, researching a style is helpful, but most reputable retailers can give you living room design ideas or guidance to help you make choices that are relevant to your style.
Quick Tip – Shop for your inspiration pieces first. Whether it be art, a piece of furniture, wallpaper, etc., inspiration pieces typically make a statement. Because of this, they may be dramatic. Therefore, you’ll want to choose furnishings, décor and lighting that compliment your inspiration piece or pieces, rather than compete with them. It’s easier to work from inspiration than to create inspiration which is why we shop in this order.
Choose a Paint Colour
There are literally hundreds of thousands of paint colours to choose from. Therefore, choosing a paint colour is likely the going to be the easiest part of your living room design project. Once you have your other items chosen, picking a paint colour will be a cinch because there are so many you can match your furnishings with. And, even if you don’t find one that is the “your” perfect colour, you can have one mixed to meet your expectations. Here are a few black colours to consider if you’re brave enough.
Quick Tip #1 – Pick up a bunch of paint swatches that interest you and compare them against your furnishings and décor to see if you like how they coordinate. Make sure to examine the colour in daylight and with artificial light to ensure you like the colour at all times of day before painting your walls.
Quick Tip #2 – Dark colours make a space feel smaller and light colours make a space feel larger. Take this into consideration when deciding on the colour for your living room design. If you have an expansive room or high ceilings, a darker shade can make a room feel cozier. Comparatively, white or light colours can make a room feel less cramped. Decide how you want your room to feel before you make your paint choice.
So there you go, you’re all set to design a living room that is classic and makes a statement. That said, if you’re too busy to make it happen, feel free to drop us a line. We’ll be happy to design it for you. For more tips make sure to sign up for my Design Tribe. And, if you have a specific question, please leave it in the comment section. Happy Monday y’all!
Principal Designer | Orangetree Interiors
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