Office Makeover: Chocolate Brown Walls?

The latest Ballard Design catalog arrived in the mail and it is full of beautiful dark brown rooms. I’ve always been a fan – but it’s so bold! What a commitment to cover your walls in such a rich color.

But the wheels began spinning and I set out for more wall-to-wall brown inspiration.

The best part of dark walls is the ability to really take advantage of contrasts in the forms of bright white molding, furniture – even ceramic decor. And how about those pops of raspberry, lime green and teal? And brass and gold? Oooh pretty.

So stunning! But so bold. Do I dare paint an entire room dark brown? Most designers insist that the old adage of dark colors making a room feel smaller simply isn’t true. It has much more to do with proportions and lighting.

What do you think? Too much? Or just right?

Images from DecorPad, Lennoxx

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...


  1. kristi says

    I am getting ready to make a small bedroom multi – function as a home office. I am thinking of doing the walls in chocolate brown with all white trim. The carpet is a multi neutral tones burbur. My accent color is a muted lavendar. The desk and credenza will be white and creams. Not sure what the window treatments will be. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

    • says

      Sounds beautiful! We painted our office walls a rich chocolate brown and I love it. Bright whites contrast nicely and keep it looking crisp and clean :). The lavender will look great.

  2. says

    I was JUST about to use temporary wall paper to cover my chocolate brown bathroom until I saw this post! OMGEEEE.. thank you for this inspiration! I had not considered lime green or yellow. Currently my bathroom has chocolate brown walls…coupled with red and taupe accessories. I have loved it for the past 2 years but it is time for change! Thanks for the inspiration!

  3. says

    If you have tons of natural light in the room and lots of light furniture…I say go for it! But without enough natural light, I worry that a dark brown room could look like a cave. This might have to be a “looks good on paper” design. (but those rooms are enticing, aren’t they?)

  4. says

    I’ve done some very successful dark brown colour blocking. Not sure I would like the effect of a completely brown room. One thing to note is that dark saturated colours can suck the light out of a room.

  5. says

    I love all these pictures! I drooled over several of those in the Ballard Designs catalog this week too.

  6. Victoria Robinson says

    As a designer I am always trying to get clients to embrace rich color, and chocolate brown is one of the richest! And, the right color pairing can actually improve the things you wish you could change. I always use my own tiny townhouse as an example of both of these- my living room is a rich chocolate that not only expands the room (corners are obscured, and furniture/art is really highlighted) but it tones down the orange tones in my (inherited) wood floors! So a big thank you to Ballard (and your post), hopefully more clients will be willing to take the risk!!

  7. says

    I love brown walls, but I will say that if you go brown, go all the way brown. I tried it in my master bedroom, but was afraid of the dark brown and went with a wimpy milk chocolate brown. As a result, I never, ever liked the room (even a little bit) and am now redoing it.

  8. says

    I seriously love chocolate brown walls…about 7 years ago I painted my family room/den chocolate….it made my white kitchen cabinets look so good.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>