Lighting Tips For Dark Interiors

lighting tips for dark interiors

Did you know that lighting can make dark interiors really warm?

There are countless homeowners that only have light-colored walls because they worry about the fact that a dark wall will make the entire space feel like a cave. This is so much more common than what you might initially think.

Steering away from the dark-colored interior is quite common practice. The idea is almost always the desire to make a room feel welcoming. Nobody can blame you for that.

Dark colors are definitely wonderful but they can feel pretty daunting. However, this is just the case if the lighting is not properly done.

If you want your dark interior to look as stunning as possible, there are many things that can be done. Here are some tips that are particularly effective right now, for most homes.

Natural Lighting Always Saves Dark Rooms

When you think about whether or not you could create a dark-colored interior, it is a good idea to determine how much natural light is possible in the space. You can add natural lighting through skylights, windows, ceiling panels, glass block walls or translucent materials.

As you let natural light enter the dark-colored room, colors actually become more inviting. This allows the coordination of dark textile and finish shades with lighter options. You can always add light-colored drapery or sheers to a room.

Drapes are particularly useful as they control glares when light from the sun is too bright.

Play Off Adjacent Colors

This is another great way to lighten up the dark colored interiors. Choose some colors that have a really bright nature in order to make the entire space feel casual and playful. Choose some lighter neutrals to make everything feel sophisticated and formal.

As an example, you can always choose yellow and orange as textile colors to use in throw pillows, window treatments and sofas. Neutral browns, off-whites and tans are wonderful for area rugs or as seating colors to put right in front of darker walls.

High Gloss Porcelain Tiles from Klaverweiden

Use Reflectance In Dark Bathrooms

It is surprising to see how many believe dark colors should not be used in bathrooms given the fact that some incredible designs can be created. The trick is actually to properly use lighting.

You can use wall sconces, pendant lights over vanities and even recessed lighting.

Choose reflective dark materials, not matte-finished options. This emphasizes lights. You can easily brighten the dark bathroom with glass shower doors, shiny chrome plumbing fixtures, wall mirrors and glossy ceramic tiled walls.

A very simple tip to remember if you have a limited budget or you do not know how to use reflectance in a dark-colored bathroom is to just use light-colored flooring or ceiling when bathroom walls are dark.

Dark-colored dining room – Image from Decoist by Sarah Greenman

Use Partial Decor

In the event that you are not yet ready to have a full dark wall or full dark finishes, look for something a little lighter first or use wainscot accent or chair rails. The goal is to bring in some light but retain at least a fraction of the drama of the dark interior.

Remaining focused on the drama of darker colors works really well in the dining rooms. Here you can so easily use chair rails as decorative areas for collectibles or pictures. Colors can easily be coordinated with the dining room table and seating.

Final Thoughts

Bringing some light in the dark-colored interior is easier with the simple tips mentioned above. However, there are countless other options that can be considered. This ranges from using natural lighting and great lighting fixtures to accenting furnishings and walls with some light-colored textiles, or color pops.

Lighting is always important to make rooms feel warmer and more inviting. When your choice is to go really dark with most of the room space, add light elements in order to make everything more inviting.