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Colours to Brighten a Dark Sitting Room

(4 Posts)
AmICrazyorWhat2 Sun 12-Aug-18 00:19:34

Our sitting room is west-facing but is shaded by a large porch and several trees. It's been painted dark red with cream woodwork for years (chosen by my DH- it's a traditional-style room with an open fireplace and built-in shelves), which looks cosy, but it's dark even in mid-summer.

I desperately want to lighten it up and make it feel more modern, but I keep reading that "colour is good for dark rooms," really light shades won't work, etc. Now I don't know what to do!

I've been looking at ochre as I love orange/gold and also wondering about a simple lavender. I want a clean, bright look that reflects the little natural light it has, with white woodwork (or close to white, def. not cream).

Any recommendations appreciated. It has an archway into a light-blue dining room and a golden-yellow hall that's also brighter...DH didn't choose those colours. grin

WhereIsBlueRabbit Sun 12-Aug-18 15:42:58

Hmm. We've just started painting our living-dining room, which is quite dark at the north-facing end. We've chosen a custard yellow, which looks a lot nicer than it sounds, with white woodwork.

How about a pale green? I'm sure people cleverer than me will be able to suggest shades but you might be able to play on the greenery outside in some way.

If I'd had total free reign in our living room, I would have gone for Farrow and Ball Peignoir, which is a dusky pink-grey shade. Would be cosy!

ASliceOfArcticRoll Sun 12-Aug-18 16:05:38

Can you approach this multi pronged?

So thin the trees?
Change some furniture? Have mirrors? Pale throws?
In my experience paint can only do so much and would need help.

I have ochre, which I love combined with an off white and a lot of lighting in my dining room. To me it's a dark colour! I also invested in a lamp I love, so it became a positive when I lit it. I prefer the room in the evening.

I think the advice for dark colours is a way to work with what you've got to maximise drama etc. In your situation if it's a room you live in a lot and you want it lighter, I would go pale.

AmICrazyorWhat2 Sun 12-Aug-18 17:40:50

Thanks for the advice, all good points.

Re. The trees and shade The main issue is really the large porch/veranda, which runs the length of the house (think American-style wooden porch with rocking chairs). It blocks the light even more than the trees - and we can't do much about it because we're in an historical neighbourhood and there are all sorts of rules - even about cutting down trees!

I do need to look at better lighting for the room, plus some lighter furniture.

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