Decorating & Furniture/colour schemes


Hi, I'm having my apartment redecorated and the living room will be white with one red feature wall opposite the main entrance.
I'd like to buy a leather corner unit and I've seen a lovely light brown leather sofa that I like. However, I was originally planning on getting black leather and had arranged paint colour along those lines. Would a light brown leather suite look really bad against the red wall? There is a fireplace in this red wall as well and it's black, as are the two small light fittings mounted either side higher up the wall.
All the other dining furniture that I like seems to be dark brown as well, with cream or dark brown leather chairs.
Do I have to stick with black leather to avoid giving my living room a car crash look?
I'm also getting blinds for the window in the room and am planning on dark wood for those too as the wall is white and I want some sort of colour contrast to 'warm up' the whiter areas.
The room is approximately 30 x 12 feet. I just want to use colours and furniture that 'work' and look nice because I'm decorating as a surprise for my other half who's away on holidays!
Grateful for your assistance!

Hi Fin,

Thanks for selecting me to answer your decor questions.  First of all, the brown sofa will be fine with the red.  Don't be overly concerned about the black that's in the room.  Black is a typical fireplace color and coordinating the light fittings to the fireplace is typical.  That does not dictate what color your furnishings are or should be.  And, every space needs some black in it, since it acts as an anchor for the rest of the room color.

My only concern is your thought of using dark wood for the blinds against the white walls.  Firstly, it won't accomplish what you want, which is to warm up the white areas.  It will do just the opposite.  Here's why:  too much contrast.  The eye goes to color and if your window blinds are dark wood, the eye will travel there and experience the contrast of the white and the dark.  

To warm up the white walls, paint them in another neutral color - maybe camel brown or some color similar to your sectional couch.  If you have to leave the walls white, then by all means use white blinds.  You could incorporate a soft window treatment (curtain or draperies) that tie in all three colors in the space:  white, red and the color of your furniture.  This would soften the white a bit.  

I think it's a wonderful gift that you're giving your other half, and I'm sure s/he will appreciate all your efforts.  

If you'll just reconsider the blinds, you'll be in excellent shape.


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Jennifer Taylor Wojcik


Visit my web site at: Decor: I've written about it, planned it, designed it and colored it, and I've never stopped loving it. It's not what you spend, or who made it, it's how it makes you feel.


College, advertising, public relations, marketing, free-lance writing and a plethora of creative endeavors have led me here. As an entrepreneur in decorative product design, I learned the hard way how tough it can be to be in business for yourself. A stint at a law firm taught me humility too. Some three thousand questions ago, I wondered if I could really help. Obviously, I'm still here and still taking your questions. God Bless You!

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BA, Psychology

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