How to brighten a dark room: Melanie was looking to "lift" her dining room colors from gloomy to bright & upbeat, but without having to replace any of her furniture. Here's what she said:
I have tiles that are reminiscent of Tuscany, a period style 8' x 4' timber table that looks like it's hewn from a giant forest, and sadly I bought all my furniture to match the set ... and it looks so matchy.
I want to remake its look, and I'm not into the 'rustic Tuscan' thing.
My lounge, which connects to the dining room, was done in soft teals and beige.
What colour would I do my table, and other timbers to suit?
P.S. My home is quite dark!
Melanie sent some photos of the room in question:
And she explained what kind of dining room color and mood she had in mind:
I love seascapes. I live in the mountains. I hate dark wood.
We get a lot of stormy, gloomy weather. These pics were taken in early morning light (around 8am) on a very, very good day. It is mostly grey and overcast (bring on summer please!!)
This home is very open-plan with open half walls, and loft-style with exposed rustic beams and rustic flooring.
Personally I dont like rustic and will not do my furniture to match it (although it would look uniform throughout), because it is a rental.
I have just repainted the entire home in Skin (beige with red undertones).
I was thinking of doing the chairs a fantastic azure blue and upholstering them and perhaps taking the table back to raw and then just doing a waxed type surface.
But I hesitate - due to the quality of the furniture - albeit hating the colours!
Thanks a lot for your reply :-)
Thanks for sending the pictures! I can see what the problem is now. You have similar brown dining room colors all around the room, in
Which makes the space very easy on the eye, but the wood is relatively dark & apart from general gloom during foul weather periods, anything dark will also stand out against light surroundings & a light background color and take up visual space.
I don't think I would change the whole table/chair ensemble, though, because that might not sit easy with the rest of the furniture - it could look like a foreign entity: awkward, rather than interesting. (I find mixing woods & styles can be incredibly hard to pull off!)
However, I do think changing the look of the tabletop could make a big difference. (Leaving the base frame untouched will visually integrate the table with the rest of the furniture).
You could ...
I'm not sure I would paint the chairs. A less 'final' method to brighten a dark room would be to ...
There - my two cents' worth, Melanie! I can only suggest you take your time; these things usually develop slowly, and sometimes the right idea pops up way into the process.
Here's part of Melanie's reply:
Thanks for your response!
It's a huge deal but I know I like the beachy, fresh, clean, streamlined and light feel of an airy home. So, I will give it some thought and get back to you.
I appreciate your thorough response, very well laid out and with a keen eye. I was thrilled. So kind of you to take the time.
I had in the past contacted other designers who were cool and impractical.
When I found your site, I loved it, it was thorough and well written.
I will keep you in touch and hope that it will turn out fabulous!
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