Color Spotlight: Black Attack

Color Spotlight: Black Attack

If you've ever picked up a shelter magazine, then you know that painting a room is the first step in any interior makeover. The Color Spotlight series will provide inspirational images, paint swatches, and palates to help anyone in a color conundrum select the perfect new hue for their space.

Black is the third color in the series and while you might argue that black is not actually a color, rather the lack of color, why don't you just humor me and go with it, m'kay? Thaaaanks. This go 'round, we'll let a true master walk us through the spectrum of black hues... Ralph Lauren has cornered the market on rich, classic tones and his paint lines offer more shades of black than you ever knew existed.

(Living Etc, Ralph Lauren Paint)
What better way to begin than with a strong black inspiration wall...Though I feel that I must insert a personal disclaimer here: I am not a fan of chalkboard walls. There, I said it. Sure, they're trendy and fun, but in reality, they're messy and they never look as great as you think they will. But back to the photo at hand! This office is like my dream office with the giant farm-table-turned-desk, the cowhide rug, and oh, I dunno, THE CHAIR MADE OUT OF HORNS. The silent black back wall allows the rest of the accents in the room to truly speak their mind and it also provides the perfect blank space for tacking up inspiring images. On the left wall, we can see that the black accent wall is complimented by the often-seen Cole & Son Woods wallpaper. I absolutely love this space and it's a great example that even smaller rooms can remain bright with a black wall!

(Elle Decor, Ralph Lauren Paint)

Moving right along with this sexy, polished bedroom...Here the black wall with the white accents acts as a headboard and anchors the bed. Were the wall left white, the bed might seem to float in the seemingly unfinished room, but the carefully-measured white lines and the federal mirror give the illusion of a grand headboard. The black and white frame motif is echoed in the shams, and while I'm not generally one to pile on the pillows, the stripes that peek from behind the circular pattern draw your eye from the wall to the bed. Onyx shades add to the boudoir feel, but the seagrass rug and smart chrome and glass tray piled with books at the foot of the bed keep the space from being trampy. I think this bedroom is a nice compromise of masculine and feminine...What do you think?

(The Selby, Ralph Lauren Paint)

Walls aren't the only thing that can make a bold statement when coated in an inky shade. Black floors and cabinets are transformed from everyday surfaces into sleek, ebony elements, and in this photo you can see how they lend a polished urban quality to an open loft. I loooove the worn brown tones, especially because they keep the space from feeling stark or cold. This space obviously gets great light, but I can only imagine how amazing it'd look at night...Friends piled on the sofa and the leather daybed, the single bulb offering a dim glow with the help of scattered tea-lights, the kitchen dark and shadowy...what a perfect setting to bring out a glowing birthday cake and celebrate with a late night of stories and champagne. I want to live here!

(House Beautiful, Ralph Lauren Paint)

Ah, and last but not least: a bathroom that would fit in just about anywhere. Here, the black walls don't feel too surprising, as they begin about halfway up the wall. The simple subway tiling below offers a balance that any soccer mom would find appropriate and the classic double sinks offer a dose of tradition suitable for a home in the Hamptons. I love that the bright cotton dhurrie is the bright focal point of the room...So often, bathrooms are subjected to coats of pastel paint and are then overly-decorated, but I think this photo proves that keeping it simple and straightforward is usually the right move.

Alright, your turn: Do you think black walls are too dramatic? Where have you recently seen a space transformed with black paint? And what is YOUR opinion of chalkboard walls??

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I love a black kitchen... But in my small rental house it a 'not done': way to small of a space and way to dark

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