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13 Decorations to Pair With Beautiful Dark Walls

By Laura Gaskill, Houzz via Realty Times

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CM Natural Designs

Dark walls, from inky blue to charcoal and black, are refined and dramatic - but decorating around them without making your space feel too dark can be tricky. If you've been thinking of painting one or more walls a deep, dark hue, these ideas for color and decor pairings should help.

Natural wood. Natural wood, whether in a mirror frame, rustic tabletop or chair, helps lighten up dark walls while also emphasizing their richness. You can't go wrong with a driftwood or barn wood mirror, a farmhouse table or bentwood chairs.

Sculptural shapes. Place anything colorful or white in front of a dark wall, and your eye will be immediately drawn to its contours. Try placing a group of pottery pieces on a console or mantel. Or highlight the shape of an unusual table or chair by positioning it in front of a deep, dark wall.

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Green plants. Potted plants and indoor trees look even lusher when placed in front of a dark wall. The dark color recedes into the background, creating the feeling of having a mini forest in the room instead of a few plants. Bonus style points if your plants have a sculptural shape, like the topiaries shown here.

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Large artwork. A single piece of oversize art hung on a dark wall has the most impact - even more than a salon-style grouping. The drama of a deep wall color draws the eye. This works especially well with artwork with a large white mat and a slim black frame.

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White. If you feel at all unsure about which direction to go in with the other elements in your dark painted room, choose white — it always works. In this bedroom a charcoal wall is set off by a grouping of wall-mounted plants on white bases, white bedding and white window treatments.

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Pale, watery hues. Soft and ethereal, pale aqua, mint, champagne and silvery gray bring lightness to a room with dark walls. Try these watercolor-inspired hues in bedding, a throw or pillows for an elegant feel.

bluehammer Photo by Louise de Miranda – Discover bedroom design inspiration

Rich mustard and teal. These hues complement deep blue, gray or even dark chocolate walls by bringing in the colors of fall. Just a small touch of mustard, teal or both hues will do — try a throw, pillow covers or curtains.

bluehammer Photo by Breeze Giannasio Interiors – Browse powder room photos

Wild card pairing: brights. A flash of hot pink, neon yellow or vibrant turquoise is daring - and exciting! Brights work best with black or charcoal; adding these bold hues to a room painted another dark color (like navy or forest green) is riskier. Test out a fun color pairing with a low-cost addition like hand towels or a cluster of bright vases.

Mirrors. Dark walls in a room without much natural light run the risk of making it feel oppressive. Boost what light you have by adding mirrors - even small, decorative mirrors, like the ones shown here, can help lighten things up. If the room is very dark, add a larger mirror, either on the wall or leaning against it.

bluehammer Photo by Jessica Helgerson Interior Design – Search bedroom pictures

Acrylic and glass. Like mirrors, clear materials, like acrylic and glass, can help a dark space feel a bit lighter. Swap out a wood piece, like a console, for a glass or acrylic version. Or add a large glass vase filled with greenery for a quick boost.

bluehammer Photo by Tamara Magel Studio – More bedroom ideas bluehammer Photo by Rikki Snyder – Browse living room photos

In this living room, dark gray walls are lightened up with a glass coffee table, an acrylic TV stand, white trim and a light sofa and rug.

bluehammer Photo by Jessica Helgerson Interior Design – Search family room design ideas

Rich texture. Dark walls call out for touchable textures, like velvet, silk, oiled wood and fluffy mohair. Consider a plush velvet sofa, velvet or silk accent pillows, or a mohair throw in a living room with dark walls.

bluehammer Photo by Oak Hill Architects – Search dining room pictures

Oriental rugs. Rolling out an Oriental rug is a good way to marry a daringly dark wall color with a traditional home. These carpets tend to include a range of rich, deep colors, lending them well to dark walls in just about any hue.

Antiques. As with using traditional rugs, bringing in an antique piece or two is a wonderful way to take the edge off a strong wall color. In the room shown here, dark walls look refined alongside an eclectic mix of antiques and modern Lucite chairs.

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