How to Make My Home Less Dark and Gloomy

Dark can be cozy.  Dark and gloomy, though, that’s just depressing.  Combined with a long, bitter cold winter, there’s nothing that makes you want to just pack up and leave for sunnier shores.

You don’t have to fly south for your home to feel like a brightened paradise.  Here’s a few tips and tricks that can get you through that slog-of-a-season and give your home a transformative makeover.

Make it Bright, Start with White

Want to know the most surefire way to brighten up your home?  Your first step shouldn’t be the old trick of hanging mirrors to distribute light.  It’s the color white.  Before you embark on any other design attempts, start with a good old-fashioned can of white paint.  Non-hue white paint doesn’t absorb any colors, so your white walls, ceilings, and furniture scatters light indirectly back to other surfaces.

Dark and gloomy doesn’t mesh with a room fashioned in white.  It’s bright, it’s clean, and there’s an abundance of light, so if you’re after a total transformation from depressingly dark to brilliantly bright, then grab your paintbrush.  Then, you can hang those mirrors.

Mirror, Mirror on the Wall

In the designer’s playbook, there’s the tried-and-true method of bringing life to any room by hanging a few mirrors.  It makes a room look bigger, opens it up, and bounces light around as the sun passes through.  Well, it’s a great method, but if you’ve got a dark room the light will struggle as it travels, however when you paint your room white (even just the ceiling), it really boosts the old mirror-trick.

evaluating double hung windows

Sconce it Up

Not all rooms are created equal, so if your home is feeling particularly dark and gloomy in one area over another, it could be because there’s a lack of natural light.  Powder rooms, basements, and awkward corners are all great examples of this where light gets lost.  In many of these cases, the overhead fluorescent lighting is just too cold and clinical.

If this sounds like a room in your house, here’s a solution made just for you: sconces.  These wall lights are designed to emit a warm, inviting glow, washing your walls in comforting light.  They illuminate the room in just the right way—not too much, but just enough.  Add a pair of sconces next to a mirror in the bathroom, beside your front door in your dark hallway, or in your basement next to the fireplace.

Going Green

If you’re looking for a quick way to cheer your home (and yourself) up, get a houseplant.  You’d be surprised the amount of joy and life even the tiniest asparagus fern can bring into your life.  The curling vines of a devil’s ivy, an exotic orchid, adorable succulents, an impressively tall rattlesnake plant, or a slice of paradise with a ponytail palm can transform any room or space from dark and dull to lively and radiant.

There are a plethora of choices for planters.  Depending on your tastes and how your rooms are decorated, you can let the plants and their natural colors speak for themselves, otherwise you can choose a vase or planter that adds another layer of aesthetic interest.

Go geometric, go bold, go classic, or go clear, whatever you decide, know that this easy-to-do decorating tip can be done in a matter of minutes with a lasting impact on your space.

Contrast with Black

By now, your home should be far less dark and gloomy, now on its way to gloriously bright and sunny, thanks to the addition of white, a few mirrors and helpful lights, and a pop of green.  Now, it’s time to draw attention to all of the light colors you’ve added by adding black.

Don’t panic, it does seem to be counter intuitive, but adding just a few charcoal black elements to the mix, the room’s lighter colors will stand out even more.

You don’t have to go wild when you introduce a layer of black to your space.  Add thin, linear elements like metal chairs, tall, skinny floor lamps, or jet-black picture frames so it’s just enough to stand out among your newly painted white walls.  You can also contribute some hints of blue or navy to the mix, too.

Color is Your Friend

You don’t have to paint everything white to enjoy a brightened-up home.  Look at the fabulous trend that’s been circulating for some time: the accent wall.  Choose a warm color to contribute a level of interest to any space, drawing your attention to the wall and away from your winter woes.

Accent walls not your thing?  Try bright colored accessories.  A splash of color goes a long way and there’s nothing comfier than a soft, velvety rug, or as eye-catching as a turquoise high-backed chair.

Or if you’re feeling non-committal to colors at the moment, try this on for size: a fire in your fireplace.  It’s an instant injection of life, bright, dazzling colors, and crackling, comforting sounds.  And the best part is that a roaring fire instantly chases away those dark and gloomy moods.

Here at Feldco over 400,000 customers chose us for their home improvement needs. We do everything better and we don’t accept average so we make sure that the installation goes smoothly. For any home improvement needs get a free quote today.

Share this article:


Get started with

*View our privacy policy

Or call us at 1-866-4FELDCO®
or visit one of our locations.


Is Window Trim Necessary?

Is Window Trim Necessary?

What Is Window Trim and Why Is It Necessary? Window ...
exterior window shutters

Painting Vinyl Shutters

Painting Vinyl Shutters: Expert Tips and Techniques Updating the appearance ...
Protecting your roof

5 Steps to Protect Your Roof on July 4th

5 Steps to Protect Your Roof on July 4th In ...
entry door sidelights

Painting Doors vs. Staining Doors

Should You Stain or Paint Your New Front Door? Deciding ...
how to fix a bent gutter

How to Fix a Bent Gutter

How to Fix a Bent Gutter: A Step-by-Step Guide Understanding ...

Book Today and Save!

Over 500,000 homeowners have trusted Feldco with their windows, siding and doors. Click the button below and we’ll get started on your quote!