Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Black paint updates a traditional dining room

Paint can be used in many ways to change the feeling in a room.  In this case my client had a traditional New England colonial home but wanted this space to feel less formal traditional and more welcoming.  The new furniture has a french country vibe~plank top table and curvy slat back chairs.The sisal carpet replaced a traditional but bossy oriental rug and the linen sheers went a long way along with the black furniture in updating this room.
Like many colonial and cape homes in the Boston area suburbs, homes with dining rooms often had one or two built in china cabinets. I owned two homes that both had a matching pair of corner cabinets with the glass doors, so they aren't uncommon. When I specified black paint for this built in corner cabinet, eyebrows were raised~especially that of the painter.  When all was said and done, it was this piece that we liked best.  Filled with black and white transferware this corner cabinet no longer felt like the standard 1950s built-in.

The area rug is an indoor outdoor sisal style with a fabric binding.  This rug wears incredibly well and is value priced.  The "Cove" rug is sold online through Home Decorators catalogue. This rug is comparable to some of the ones you will see in Ballard Design's catalogue and I have used it many times with great results.
The 2" wooden rods (formerly white) were painted black, then beige sheer linen panels were hung with cream colored wood blinds for additional privacy.  Originally there were pole swags and jabots over the white rods. The walls were hand painted in a green faux finish that was a super popular and expensive look a decade ago~but still works well enough until my clients are ready to ditch the green color in favor of something else, like a coordinated neutral to go with the putnam ivory on the bottom of the room.
The long wine buffet is an Arhaus piece, and is not made by the same company that did the table and chairs.  Mixing pieces is easy to do when matte black is the common connector.
This color palette of cream, beige, green and black works nicely together.  You could easily change the green wall finish out to a neutral color to change the feel of the space again.  So remember the power of  paint  and what it can possibly do for your room.  I wish I had before pictures, but sadly this was done last year before my blogging started~however I thought you might enjoy seeing this project.


  1. Love it Amy. Black always works in my book...so classic and old world. Beautiful job!!

  2. You know what color I would have painted it LOL
    Very bold choice great design

  3. Hi Amy! Oh, what a beautiful dining room and the black looks wonderful! You're so good! :) I thought the walls were wallpapered!
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

  4. Amy~ That looks wonderful-Black is always a go-to color for me. The dining room is gorgeous! xo Diana

  5. I love pops of black in a room. It keep the room from looking too sweet sometimes. I have painted black doors in my kitchen and some black furniture in my kitchen as well as an open cabinet. I think it's a good choice you made. That dining room turned out very nice.

  6. Love it Amy!! Black looks great with that green! I am fixing to paint the french door in my kitchen black, and my walls in there are green, so you just gave me a sneak preview of what it will look like! LOVE IT!

    Your dining room is gorgeous~!

    Lou Cinda

  7. I like the way furniture painted black automatically refreshes and gives an updated look to older furniture styles. It seems to work very well with the green walls. I like the whole look and you did a fantastic job for the client. I'm sure she was pleased with the new look of her dining room.--------Shannon

  8. And there's the black! lol It does look great. Really brings a presence to the room.

  9. Hi Amy,
    I don't have any black in my home. Maybe I should add some, because this room looks so pretty.

    You did a wonderful job for your client.


  10. Love the blak!!
    I also vote for keeping the walls green
    Nicely done!

  11. Hi Amy,
    I love the black and I am sending the pics to my daughter as I thought she might want to paint her chairs and table legs black for her home.


  12. I've always heard that every room needs a touch of black. I love your dining room, it looks great!

  13. Such a beautiful space. You really have given it a relaxed yet traditional room. I bet it was nice to see the "bossy" look go.
    Love the touches of black.

  14. Drama! I like how classic it looks. Well done!

    Have a great day, sweetie.


    Luciane at HomeBunch.com

  15. I really like what you did with this room. We have black bedroom furniture and I love how it looks with the deeper tones I've used in there,
    but also enjoy all of the white and grey rooms that are so popular now, but realized they just might not be my style.

    I love the French Country look, does it ever incorporate black?

    ~ Violet

  16. Looks good. I like black painted pieces.


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