Let There Be Light: Tips For Brightening Any Dark Room
Recently I've been working with a young couple to help them freshen the interiors of their suburban cottage and bring brightness into the front of the house. A formal living room, narrow hallway and guest bathroom are the main light deprived areas, but together we have come up with some clever solutions to enhance the light in these spaces.
The project got me thinking about the fact that so many of our homes are affected by dark rooms that could really benefit from more light. So here are a few key tips for bringing brightness into any dark space:
1. Choose Flooring Wisely - It's amazing the impact a light floor can have in a dark space. Choosing light shades and reflective materials like gloss paint and ceramic or porcelain tiles can help to reflect light around a dark space.
2. Mirrors - Mirrors are your main ally when it comes to tackling dark rooms. Their reflective surface will bounce the light around the room, so place mirrors strategically in such a way that they are either opposite a window, or angled to reflect any natural light coming into the space. Panelling walls with mirrors is an amazing way of optimising and reflecting natural light.
3. Ceiling Paint - Simple but effective. A fresh coat of white paint is a really easy way of creating a feeling of brightness in a dark room.
4. Gloss paint - If you have wood panelling or an exposed wooden floor why not paint it in a white gloss? Gloss paint is a trend making serious waves at the moment, and its glossy, reflective nature means lots of lovely light bouncing properties!
5. Light textures - To create a real feeling of lightness, maximise furnishings and textiles in light tones. Especially when it comes to lamp shades - opt for cream, white or anything neutral to allow the light to pass through the shade and have the desired brightening impact.
6. Borrow From Other Rooms - Probably the oldest trick in the design book, but it's a particularly good one! If a room doesn't have a source of natural light, using glass panelled doors or windows will allow light from other rooms to flood through.
Although light colours are the best choice when it comes to evoking a feeling of brightness, it's really important to get the right shade. White and off-whites can sometimes look quite grey in dark rooms, so always try to test the colour in the space before you commit to anything!
Have a lovely weekend :)