A Deep Dive into Charcoal Paint

Written on 23rd November 2022
A Deep Dive into Charcoal Paint

Walls, ceiling and skirting board: Hopper Head No.305. Door and frame: Mole’s Breath No.276.

Timeless, versatile and deeply dramatic, charcoal paint is incredibly popular. And it’s easy to see why. This striking shade looks right at home in both traditional cottages and city apartments. Today on The Chromologist, we’re taking a deep dive into charcoal to answer your burning questions about this bold shade.

What Colour Is Charcoal?

Charcoal is dark grey, tiptoeing towards black but not quite. It’s a little softer. As you may imagine, it’s a similar hue to the burnt wood it takes its name from. Our new Hopper Head is a classic charcoal. However, our take on this colour is inspired by metal rather than wood: the decorative iron containers that catch rainwater at the edge of roofs.

For a slightly lighter take on charcoal try Down Pipe or Plummett. Or for a touch more drama, use the darker Railings or Off-Black.


Where Can You Use Charcoal Paint?

Sometimes, using a colour as dark and dramatic as charcoal can seem a little daunting, but it doesn’t have to be. Charcoal is one of the most versatile colours around, making it a particularly brilliant shade decorate with. One thing’s for sure, it will always look effortlessly considered.

Add an Accent

If you just want to dip a toe into the world of dark paint, charcoal works wonderfully on woodwork or as an accent wall. It’s also a particularly good trick for skirting boards in small spaces: a darker skirting against a light wall makes the wall seem even lighter and the whole room feel bigger and brighter - this technique is known as ‘dark on light’ and it’s one of our all-time favourite ways of decorating.


Take It All Over

Walls, ceiling and skirting board: Hopper Head No.305. Door and frame: Mole’s Breath No.276.

Walls and woodwork: Down Pipe No.26.

Using a charcoal paint colour all over like Hopper Head, or even darker Off-Black or Railings, is a simple but effective way to create a cosy, cocooning feel. Take the colour across the walls, woodwork and even ceiling to create an enveloping atmosphere, perfect for rooms you use in the evening, like bedrooms or snugs, or a statement hallway.


Enhance Your Exteriors

Charcoals like Hopper Head and other dark colours are a classic choice for doors, window frames and cladding. When used on the outside of a home, these colours create a clean, traditional look sure to draw the eye. For the same reason, they also work well on doors and windows that separate indoor and outdoor spaces, like conservatories and porches.


What Colours Go With Charcoal?

Charcoal is an effortlessly versatile shade, complementing nearly every colour imaginable – it works as a beautiful accent to neutral or more pared-back schemes, while also balancing out bright, bold shades.

Need More Advice?

Feeling inspired but not sure where to start? Our expert Colour Consultants are here to help.

Book a colour consultancy

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