Impulsive decorating: our black living room wall

IMG_7994 edit 600It’s official, I am not safe to be left home alone. There is a significant danger of me wielding a paint brush and turning the house upside down.

That’s exactly what happened a few weekends back when I made a completely spontaneous decision to strip the yellow wallpaper (you can see a little glimpse of it in this post) from our living room wall, and paint the wall black instead. I’d been seduced by Tiff’s beautiful black wall that I’d seen on Instagram, and once I’d got the idea in my head, there was no distracting me. I’m incredibly impulsive when it comes to making decorating decisions – I even committed the cardinal sin of not doing any testers, I just went right ahead and bought a big pot of paint the same shade as Tiff (La Plancha Premium matt emulsion from Valspar). It’s lucky she’s a lady of very good taste.

Decorating with kids | Growing SpacesThe twins helped me with the wallpaper stripping, which was actually really good fun, and then we gave the wall a good scrub with sugar soap to get rid of all the wallpaper adhesive. I even let the kids get involved with the painting… but only for about five minutes before my stress levels went through the roof (I challenge anyone to stay calm with two five-year-olds with black-paint-laden brushes running riot in their living room) and they were banished to the garden while I finished off the job.
Add depth with a black feature wall | Growing Spaces

I have to admit to a massive moment of doubt halfway through but once it was done I fell completely head-over-heels in love with it. The black completely changes the feel of the living room – the space feels bigger and calmer and the wall is the perfect backdrop for our old vintage leather seating. That armchair is my new favourite coffee spot. Since the wall has been finished I’ve had a wonderful afternoon’s faffing to create the gallery wall. It’s not complete (nothing in our house ever is) but I’ve made a good start.

When we first moved to this house I packed most of my vintage treasures away with the aim to give our home a more contemporary look, but those vintage bits have been slowly reappearing over the last four years and I feel so much happier having them around. Trying to do something different and out of my comfort zone has just made me clearer about my own sense of style, and now I think it’s time to really embrace it, even if we’re not living in the beautiful period house of my dreams.





  1. nicola
    May 19, 2015 / 11:38 am

    I love it! Weve just brought a house that needs completely renovating… When were in im hiring you to be my interior designer! x

    • Heather Young May 19, 2015 / 6:01 pm

      Exciting house news! I’m more than happy to be your virtual interior consultant!

  2. May 19, 2015 / 12:04 pm

    I absolutely love it! You’re making me wish for a house I can decorate. Renting sucks.

    Love the way you’ve put black frames on the black wall, really interesting.

    • Heather Young May 19, 2015 / 6:02 pm

      Oops, soz Lottie. I’ve had those black frames for ages but never knew where to put them before but I like how the match the black wall behind.

  3. May 19, 2015 / 12:27 pm

    Looks so, so good! Works perfectly with your furniture, too. Totally love it xx

    • Heather Young May 19, 2015 / 6:04 pm

      Thanks Katy! Our vintage furniture bits looked a bit out of place in our living room before I think and we’d never found the perfect spot for them. Now we’ve had a rearrange I think they fit right in, and it’s created a sort of second seating area within the living space. x

  4. Emma
    May 19, 2015 / 2:30 pm

    Love it, where did you get those sofa’s?

    • Heather Young May 19, 2015 / 6:05 pm

      I’m sorry, we bought them years and years ago in a local vintage furniture shop when we lived in South East London.

  5. May 19, 2015 / 9:38 pm

    Oh, it looks so beautiful! I’d never thought black could look so good! Does your room get a lot of light? Ours is quite dark so don’t know if it could work! And absolutely love your rug!

  6. Helloitsgemma
    May 20, 2015 / 7:26 am

    It is gorgeous. We have a very dark grey wall and I love it. Seeing this I realise our wall needs more art.

  7. May 20, 2015 / 12:01 pm

    This looks beautiful. I love our black chalkboard walls. It does tend to get a bit dark at times, but it sets things off nicely against it.

  8. May 22, 2015 / 11:41 pm

    Stunning…! I’m envious of your spontaneity. Takes me months – to work my way up to doing anything in our house. Really good move though, looks great.

  9. May 26, 2015 / 11:08 pm

    I love your black wall. I have a black donning room, black bathroom, and I am getting ready to paint one wall black in the living room. I can’t get enough of black walls!

  10. Ryna
    July 21, 2016 / 9:48 pm

    Please help! I am in love with this paint color, but can’t seem to find it anywhere. Not even on the VALSAPAR website. Was it re-named? Can’t find it at any of my local paint stores or in their databases. Where did you find the paint? Thanks so much!

    • Heather Young July 22, 2016 / 4:24 pm

      Hi Ryna! Are you in the UK? I’ve checked with Valspar UK and La Plancha is definitely still available to be mixed in all B&Q stores

      • Victoria Griswold
        February 11, 2018 / 10:12 pm

        I have also been on the search for this color in the US and I cant find it! Its been months!! any suggestions on how to inquire about getting this color here to the US?????

    • December 19, 2016 / 1:54 pm

      This has made my day. I wish all posignts were this good.

  11. Kimberley
    November 10, 2017 / 7:06 pm

    Gorgeous! Pls can you tell me where your rug is from??

    • Heather Young December 28, 2017 / 10:28 am

      So sorry for the delayed response! This rug is from the Plantation Rug Company.

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