Black walls- a do or a don’t?

Thursday, August 21, 2008 | Category: Color, Paint

I think dark walls are gorgeous….as we’ve discussed before in our post, “Dark and Daring”. But what are your thoughts on black painted walls? Would you ever do it in your own home?

In this month’s Met Home issue they had a whole section on “paint tricks”. Josette Buisson said “I know a decorator whose kitchen is coated entirely in black, and when you walk in, the ceiling seems to go on forever.” Sarah Cole claimed to “paint the inside of shelving a dark color to set off dishes, glassware, or books” and their shelf example was shown using Farrow and Ball’s Off Black.

What are your thoughts on black paint? How would you use it? What kind of room would you paint black?

Studio Annetta featured this black room from House and Garden on her post, Tall Dark and Handsome

Apartment Therapy also featured a black painted room in their post Randolph Duke’s Hollywood Home from British Elle Decoration

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24 Comments to 'Black walls- a do or a don’t?' 21 Aug 08 at 7:03 am

I *LOVE* black walls. I think they would make the most soothing bedroom.

maison21 21 Aug 08 at 8:41 am

loving black walls! i’m trying to convince a client to go with black grasscloth walls in their media room- set off with chocolate and white upohlstery, i think it would be super hot. client is not so sure…

SimplyGrove 21 Aug 08 at 9:09 am

I am planning on painting my office black. Its a dark mocha now and I want to darken it. I love how striking it makes a room and adds great contrast:)

Visual Vamp 21 Aug 08 at 11:02 am

Just do it! It’s just paint! I think they look chic and sexy! I just painted my living room deep brown which has the same vibe as black paint (you can see it posted on my blog).

columnist 21 Aug 08 at 12:25 pm

I think they work in the final picture because of the white carpet, so providing your flooring and pieces of furniture a white or light it’s doable, but probably something I would be too scared to try…and then it’s a bit of a struggle painting over it.

Pascale 21 Aug 08 at 1:20 pm

Jolie harmonie de couleurs, c’est très reposant comme décor.

Mango Gal 21 Aug 08 at 4:49 pm

Absolutely beautiful! I love the look.

Mary Kay 21 Aug 08 at 7:03 pm

I LOVE them! I may consider them for my very bright bonus room/office. Since I do my own painting, I wouldn’t have to worry about the cost of MULTIPLE coats!

Nancy - 21 Aug 08 at 8:26 pm

I loooove black walls. They are comforting in an odd way. I think they are a definite “do”.

Carolina Eclectic 22 Aug 08 at 7:07 am

I love black walls! I’m not sure I would be able to convince my husband to like them…but I will try.

::Sylvia:: 22 Aug 08 at 4:48 pm

I think black walls look fabulous, you just need the right room (and size). They look so beautiful in all these pics though!

I love black furniture too. :)


Maria 22 Aug 08 at 5:00 pm

I love the look and I would do it for a client but is too bold for me, I’m a all white clean look girl.
Love your blog..

Pigtown-Design 22 Aug 08 at 5:38 pm

I would think that it depends on how much light you’re getting into the room and what the rest of the house looks like. Also whether your furnishings work with the colour. I’d rather have a blackish green or brown than pure black.

Cupcakes and Cashmere 22 Aug 08 at 8:50 pm

if it’s done tastefully, with many white accents, i think it’s a great option! love your blog, btw…would you like to trade links?

Emily 23 Aug 08 at 1:06 am

I think the overall concensus is that black walls are fun, sexy and daring…but whether or not people can go through with it and if you have the right furnishings and accessories to go with it is another story!

Cupcakes- sure would love to trade links!

Thanks everyone for giving me your input- I have always wondered about the black wall thing! There are so many adventurous readers out there! I love it! :)

pinkstilettos 23 Aug 08 at 1:29 am

Well, I guess in the right room such as one that is not too small it would be a Do. But for me personally it would have to be a Don’t. Too Dark. Maybe a dark grey or something would be alright though. Have a good weekend! Daisy~

Sacheverelle 23 Aug 08 at 7:58 am

Personally black walls remind me of a punk rock crack house. Black trim is ok. Black doors are ok. Otherwise for walls I would stick with dark colors like chocolate brown or loden green but not true black.

uppergeorgetowner 23 Aug 08 at 6:17 pm

I did do it; I painted the bedroom black and its gorgeous. That was about 2 years ago though, and I’m ready for a change now. I would suggest using a satin finish rather than flat so there’s some light reflectivity rather than having it be absorbed.

Brooke 24 Aug 08 at 2:27 am

Black walls, a do. At least in my book.

While I’m here, I have a question…if you don’t mind answering it. Here is a quote directly from my blog today, searching for a furniture catalog:

“Right before I moved, a furniture catalog arrived with the rest of our junk mail. For a change, this one caught my eye. I’d never seen it before nor had I heard of the company. But in our moving frenzy, I tossed it. Now that we are here in Vancouver, with a large open loft apartment to furnish, I am desperately seeking this catalog because of its whimsical approach to both modern and antique designs.

Imagine Louis XIV on Acid. Ornate carved headboards and pedestal dining tables painted silver. Or white. Or black. Large gilt mirrors. Modern and sleek wall panels. Cube storage and crystal chandeliers. It was sort of like Ikea meets Shabby Chic. Or West Elm meets Z Gallerie. Similar price points too.

Does this ring a bell?”

Thanks in advance for any clues you might give me!


Emily 24 Aug 08 at 7:35 am

Hey Brooke,

It sounds to me like it’s the Brocade Home catalog! (at least I think it is…) Their website has been down for about a week or so, so I’m not sure what is the deal! But they have some great stuff- same owners as restoration hardware

chriskauf 25 Aug 08 at 1:54 am

I recently went from pale soft watery blue to the darkest brown you can go I love the change , but that is for my bedroom , I couldn’t handle it everywhere , the room would need good high ceilings and plenty of natural light not to feel like a cave, so yes maybe in one room , like a bedroom .

Leah 25 Aug 08 at 5:45 pm

I just read you blog on black walls, less than a week ago I painted my entire powder bathroom black (walls and ceiling) …. I’m not done with decorating the room but I’m now in LOVE with black walls!

rakete 27 Aug 08 at 11:44 pm

looks great and innovative – like it very much.

l. 01 Sep 08 at 4:03 pm

a do, but only in large, well light rooms.

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