Embrace Your Dark Side…

Homes and Interiors – with Anne Marie Hillan
©Time & Tide Stores

After many years of greys and neutrals being the major interiors colour trend there is a resurgence in dark and bold décor ideas for our homes.

Now it’s not for everyone – and perhaps it’s not for every home. But in the West End there are so many shops selling fantastic art, mirrors, lamps and accessories that will pop against your dark décor and enhance the look of your home. So, the question is, in 2024 are you ready to turn to the dark side? And if you are, how can you accessorise your dark décor to make it pop and keep it personal.

©The Store Interiors

Before I go any further, I should say I don’t really believe in interiors trends. I don’t think we should all slavishly copy what appears to be on trend either featured by the media or favoured by retailers. I am a a big believer in creating a home with colours that you like personally and with items that mean something to you. Interior designers will tell you though to shop your wardrobe. Look at the colours, pattern and colour combinations of what you like to wear and you will get great ideas for your interiors, and many of these will be dark.

There has never been more choice in terms of colours and patterns for dark and bold interiors yet many of us are scared to make the move. But the effect they can have is so striking and you don’t just have to take that from me. Abigail Ahern, Interior designer, presenter and best-selling interiors author says in Everything – a Maximalist Style Guide that Dark Interiors are ‘Dramatic, elegant and capable of making any room feel uber sophisticated, chic and timeless’. With dark interiors Ahern explains you need contrast as well as balance, so you need a range of textures and lighter and bolder colours, and ‘they will really pop!’

What’s In The West?

So with that in mind, what delights do our West End retailers stock to highlight how dark and bold interiors can be enhanced by fabulous furniture and accessories – and perhaps reduce the fear.  Bearing in mind my whole house is now painted in darker colours this is very much a personal journey for me!

©Forrest Furnishing

Time and Tide Stores rose to the challenge beautifully. How amazing does this cream sofa looks against the black wall with the art prints (image opposite)? And then the touches of green and gold in the bowl, cushions and vase. I have black walls in my bedroom – yes in my bedroom, that was a controversial choice I can tell you – and can vouch for the fact that everything pops against it, but this set up looks fantastic. The gorgeous Grand Sofa is available to order, and all the other items can be seen,   at the St George’s Cross store which is well worth a visit for interiors inspiration alone.

In my home I absolutely love green, understatement of the year alert, it’s throughout my hall and my dining kitchen. So, it doesn’t take much for me to know how fabulous this lush green Ercol sofa from Forrest Furnishing is against the darker green wall (image above). It’s simple, understated but oh so classy! And the addition of the large plant just makes the room. 


Your dark interiors can be a backdrop to both muted colour palettes, or to the bright and bold. Bright patterned lamps can make a massive statement in a room with a dark palette. I have had my eye on this amazing floor lamp from Cassiopeia for weeks (previous page). It comes in a range of five colours. The yellow colour way is called Summer Tropics and I love it. My living room is Hague Blue by Farrow and Ball and that lamp would just pop against it.

Bold Patterns

But if you really want to go bright then a bold patterned wall can be a backdrop to the most amazing maximalist colour pops. The Store Interiors at Anniesland has amazing bright orange lamps that look fantastic against a bold floral papered wall. And there are three floors of tables, chairs, cabinets, accessories and beds in The Store to wander around for interiors inspiration too. 

So, I have easily identified potential new sofas, cushions, prints and lamps but for my final accessories inspiration then I am heading to two of my favourite newly opened West End stores. 

© Hyndland Home

Hyndland Home has a range of quirky and fun prints and decorative plaques which just look great in any décor style. While West by Dykes and Dykes has a selection of vases and sculptures designed by Abigail Ahern herself. The Abigail Ahern pieces are full of texture which add a different dimension to any room. These are the final touches for a room – the decorative accents. Those things that are maybe a little different and which reflect your personality. Whatever your style, you should go with it and be confident.

Dark décor is more than just the colour on the walls. It’s about creating the perfect backdrop for the sofas and artwork, the lamps and the individual pieces that make your home your own. That ‘sophisticated, chic and timeless look’ that Abigail Ahern speaks of is definitely achievable. 

I personally made the change to dark décor at the end of 2020, and I have never regretted it. In fact, I love it! So, the question now is – having given it some thought – what about you? Are you ready to embrace the dark side? 

© Nantou Vase from West by Dykes and Dykes

Discover more of Anne Marie’s dark interiors on instagram @lock.downhouse

West by dykesanddykesinteriors.co.uk

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