Dining Room Beginnings

I don’t know what it is about high contrast and me lately, but we’re pretty much becoming best friends. Ever since I shared our living room’s paint job last week, there have been a lot of love/hate reactions.

Some of you guys are rowing this high-contrast boat right along with me, and then there are a few of y’all who are ready to jump ship on this whole bright whites and moody darks idea. (P.S. No clue how nautical puns work in here, but it’s late and I think I’m delirious  from moving boxes all day… and I just had to Google how to spell “delirious”.)

But I wanted to share our dining room’s latest transformation that even surprised me. This is how it looked a week ago.

Dining Room Beginnings | blesserhouse.com - A dining room gets a quick paint makeover with Benjamin Moore semi-gloss Simply White and eggshell Kendall Charcoal for a high contrast look.

And after a day’s work, here’s how it looks now, all moody in its moody moodiness. I really would have never guessed I would paint a room in our house this dark, but I guess this house just makes me do things out of my norm since it’s polar opposite from our last house. This isn’t a house that I feel I can nail up white shiplap everywhere. It’s a whole new challenge.

I wanted to break up the walls above and below the chair rail to make this space feel elegant, and I think by hanging some light linen curtains and incorporating a more casual dining table, this space will end up with great balance to it. I’m still wrapping my brain around it though and am sort of flying by the seat of my pants on this one.

Dining Room Beginnings | blesserhouse.com - A dining room gets a quick paint makeover with Benjamin Moore semi-gloss Simply White and eggshell Kendall Charcoal for a high contrast look.

Without all of those furnishings and curtains to soften it up though, this room does feel very in-your-face. For the white, we painted the trim and wall below the chair rail with Benjamin Moore Aura semi-gloss paint in Simply White. I’m still deciding if we’ll eventually add more molding to that part of the wall, but we’re in no rush.

For the dark color, we painted the upper portion with Benjamin Moore Aura eggshell in Kendall Charcoal. It’s a deep gray with a rich tone that works with pretty much any color. I cannot get over how freshened up this space feels now.

Except… ya know… those glimpses of other rooms in mid-prep mode. #RealLifeYo

Dining Room Beginnings | blesserhouse.com - A dining room gets a quick paint makeover with Benjamin Moore semi-gloss Simply White and eggshell Kendall Charcoal for a high contrast look.

Some of y’all have asked if I’m going to share more “progress” posts instead of the already prettied up finished ones, so if you’re wanting to see more of the chaos and real everyday action, I usually share all of that on Instagram Stories. Maybe one of these days I’ll figure out Facebook Live, but I’m technologically challenged in that department right now.

So that’s the State of the Dining Room Address. I’m sure I’ll have more of a “plan” once this room and I get to know each other better.

Dining Room Beginnings | blesserhouse.com - A dining room gets a quick paint makeover with Benjamin Moore semi-gloss Simply White and eggshell Kendall Charcoal for a high contrast look.

What are your thoughts so far? Loving it? Hating it? Kind of meh? I guess at this point it’s a little hard to tell until the decorating part (a.k.a. the fun part) happens.

*A big thanks to Benjamin Moore for providing paint for this post.

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  1. I love it! We moved into our house at the end of December (2 days before Christmas ?) and we’re still deliberating on the painting side of things. The whole house needs painting as every wall, ceiling, moulding and trim is CREAM and all of the hardware including switch plates and curtain rods are gold/brass. I know it will look amazing once it’s all freshened up, but it’s finding or making the time while we’re busy living, working, parenting etc. I can’t believe how quickly you guys are getting your place done. It looks so crisp and clean – I can’t wait until we make the first moves to getting ours underway. We’re getting measured and quoted for plantation shutters this week so that’s the first step towards being rid of the heavy, dated 1990’s curtains and shiny gold rods!

  2. I love it!! I think the contrast works great and the room gets so much natural light. That really gives you a lot of options. How fun!!

  3. I love it! I’m not sure if be brave enough to do it in my own home, but I live the dark colors on other people’s walls. I think lighter decor choices can really balance dark was out too. If you’ve ever wanted white dining room furniture, I think that would be beautiful in there.

  4. Love the color, even though it’s Charcoal, it to me is like a little black dress…dress up or dress it down. Perfect either way!

  5. Love it! I am hanging on your every word as we too just bought an older colonial home. I feel the same way about paying homage to its roots!

  6. Love it! I think a little dark never did any one any harm! My house is pretty crisp and neutral but I just painted a room a very similar color with a little navy tint to it and I am loving it! Can’t wait to see more pics!!

  7. I love it! The contrast is just enough. This appears to be a fairly large room. If it were all white it might be a little sterile looking. I think the charcoal upper walls are just enough to give it some character. Can’t wait to see it all together. Your botanicals will look great in here.

  8. I think it’s looks beautiful Lauren! And as you were describing the furniture, I could totally see it all together. I think it’s going to be amazing! Thought….you mentioned doing something under the chair rail, possibly more moulding, and the picture that popped into my head was of Jenni from Dear Lillie’s old home with the beadboard wallpaper they added in their entryway. I don’t know why but was thinking that might give some subtle texture to the walls (keep it painted white) while still remaining true enough to the home’s character. It wouldn’t be like ship lap but maybe would give it an elegant yet casual feel with the contrast as you have it now? You’re so much better at this stuff than me, but was just a thought. Can’t wait to see more progress! So inspiring!!

  9. I love the contrast…but I have always been in that boat. My current home can’t handle a dark wall because we struggle with light, but I love the light walls with lots of super dark accents. In fact, in the One Room Challenge dining room I’m working on right now I did a stark bright white wall which will be the backdrop to a charcoal sofa and a black chandelier. I’m excited to see how this all unfolds for you.


  10. Hi. I am between like & love. I might have gone with a bit lighter colour, dark gray, but I think the charcoal makes an more elegant statement for a DR so leaning more toward love. Also, I now think the chandelier fits the room. You will probably change it but I really like it. So much better than that beige shade. Can’t wait to see what you do next. Cheers

  11. LOVE IT!! I think it amazing and I love seeing you go another direction. I think I will do the same thing in our next house! It is refreshing and exciting to flex another design muscle! Can’t wait to see more!

  12. I absolutely love love love the paint in the living room, but I’m not so sure about the dining room. Looking forward to seeing the finished room!

  13. I love everything you have done so far. Love the color choices. I sometimes wish I had a different house to do over, & could do a more white–black scheme.

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