Halloween is almost here, but you don’t need spooky skull decor to stay festive! If you’re a big fan of black, gothic style is a perfect fit for your home, but it’s easy to become a little intimidated by this design trend if your home isn’t styled like a mid-18th century Parisian church. The Front Door is here to help! Add a hint of dark and dramatic romance with these easy steps that will ensure that your living space gets an elegant up-do that’s not gaudy.
What is gothic style?
Forget the association to dark, haunted mansions, vampires, or Wuthering Heights—did you know that gothic style was originally intended to make churches feel a bit brighter? Originated during the middle ages, gothic style began around 1150 AD throughout Europe—specifically in the United Kingdom and France.
Gothic architecture was heavily influenced by vertical design that swept upwards with grandeur in order to solve some of the common architectural problems in medieval times that caused cold, dark, and damp buildings.
Flying buttresses, pointed archways, and vaulted ceilings helped to spread the weight of taller walls and towers and make way for light and airier design than seen previously. Gothic architecture was also decorative and divinely inspired, so gothic interior design also emphasized on the ornate and majestic by incorporating heavy intricate wooden furniture and decorating in rich, dark colors. A lot of inspiration for gothic style came from the Roman Catholic Church that wanted to celebrate their triumph over paganism with beautiful stained glass windows and decor that looked like it was sent straight from the heavens.
Gothic style design tips:
Paint it black (or another dark color).
Nothing says gothic like dark or black finished furniture. The more elaborate, the better! Chairs, headboards, and cabinets made of heavier wood like oak with arches, spiral turned legs, and detailed carvings are a perfect starting point for incorporating gothic style. If black is too bold, gray or dark cherry finished furniture does the trick, or a piece with a nice black-and-white contrast like on the Laslo Hall Console can definitely add dramatic flair. The Otomi Sideboard from Furniture Row is made of solid pine and iron hardware and features a rustic dark coffee finish, making it great for any gothic-inspired room, and the Ebony Jewelry Armoire is elegant with its classic silhouette and chic black finish.
Add heavy fabrics with rich textures and tones.
To achieve the gothic style, use decadent silk, satin, or velvet fabrics with rich and bold colors and patterns for a look that is truly ravishing. The Shimmer Parsons Side Chair features luxurious gray velvet upholstery for some soft sophistication. Romantic jewel tones such as emerald green, deep burgundy, purple, ruby red, or navy blue are dramatic when contrasted with dark or black finished furniture and will give your space a sultry ambiance that looks elegant. Bringing in some color will also allow you to use black sparingly or in moderation, so the room doesn’t feel quite as dark. Thick curtains and drapes on windows and canopy beds in rich textures will also provide a stunning backdrop. Tufted cushions and nailhead trim on otherwise neutral pieces like the Marlena Ottoman and Hampton Loveseat will also add edgy embellishment and glamor to make your room feel even more refined.
Embrace the ornate.
Fancy accent pieces made of wrought iron, metal, and stone are the perfect decorative touch for your gothic revival room! Glittery glimpses of metallic finishes like bronze, gold, and silver will look dramatic on already ornate pieces. The Knottingham Hall Tree features sophisticated wrought iron door decor while the Rosemont Coffee Table boasts a stamped metal tabletop and scrolled iron legs kissed with a touch of bronze for an Old World design. Wrought iron can even look gothic-inspired on lighting like table lamps such as the Chatham Table Lamp or intricately shaped chandeliers.
Enhance with dramatic decor.
Last but not least, make sure you decorate! Gothic style is all about embellishment, so add dramatic flair with elegant objects like mirrors, candelabras, paintings, and dark colored rugs. Our gothic revival room looks romantic with the dark mahogany brushstrokes on the Piano & Music Canvas that goes great with the dramatically elegant red and coffee colored Delphine Rug. For some sparkle, the Roma Candleholders are visually appealing on a table or mantel with their burnt gold finish and smooth silhouette.
It doesn’t have to be intense!
Whether you’re adding one gothic-inspired piece or several, make sure your living space reflects your own tastes and personality. Your unique take on gothic revival will definitely turn heads, and you’ll be the trendsetter you always dreamed of!