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How to use Dark Neutrals in your Home

“‌Paint
it Black”‌

In the beginning the was darkness.

Black is the colour of the underworld, of magic and the unknown, of superstition, elegance and modernity. Come over to the dark side with House of Hackney.

“‌Paint
it Black”‌

♫ The Rolling Stones

In the beginning the was darkness.

Black is the colour of the underworld, of magic and the unknown, of superstition, elegance and modernity. Come over to the dark side with House of Hackney.

Black Magic

For ancient Egyptians, black was sacred. It was the colour of the rich, fertile soil of the Nile, of Anubis, guardian of the underworld and the river Acheron, which separated the land of the living from the dead. In Norse and Germanic lore, raven haired Nótt, goddess of night, crossed the skies in a chariot drawn by a horse as black as coal. And Hel - whose skin was on one side red the other, black - ruled over the Kingdom of Darkness. To the Roman Empire, black was a symbol of evil, witchcraft and magic. These associations permeated the following centuries - black was darkness in opposition to light. By the 1300s in Europe, as high-quality black dyes became available, the colour had a cultural revision. Because of sumptuary laws which prohibited anyone other than nobles from wearing certain colours, black became a way for the wealthy to differentiate themselves from the lower classes, and so became associated with wealth, luxury and power. Later, black evolved to symbolise introspection, melancholy and ‘the other’, and was adopted as the colour of the Romantic poets. From the 1950s, black cemented its status as the colour of counter-culture. A symbol of anarchy and social rebellion, it veiled members of subcultures from motorcycle gangs and Beatniks to New Romantics, punks and goths - and it still has powerful associations today. As Henri Matisse once said, “Black is a force”.

♫ The Rolling Stones

Black Magic

For ancient Egyptians, black was sacred. It was the colour of the rich, fertile soil of the Nile, of Anubis, guardian of the underworld and the river Acheron, which separated the land of the living from the dead. In Norse and Germanic lore, raven haired Nótt, goddess of night, crossed the skies in a chariot drawn by a horse as black as coal. And Hel - whose skin was on one side red the other, black - ruled over the Kingdom of Darkness. To the Roman Empire, black was a symbol of evil, witchcraft and magic. These associations permeated the following centuries - black was darkness in opposition to light. By the 1300s in Europe, as high-quality black dyes became available, the colour had a cultural revision. Because of sumptuary laws which prohibited anyone other than nobles from wearing certain colours, black became a way for the wealthy to differentiate themselves from the lower classes, and so became associated with wealth, luxury and power. Later, black evolved to symbolise introspection, melancholy and ‘the other’, and was adopted as the colour of the Romantic poets. From the 1950s, black cemented its status as the colour of counter-culture. A symbol of anarchy and social rebellion, it veiled members of subcultures from motorcycle gangs and Beatniks to New Romantics, punks and goths - and it still has powerful associations today. As Henri Matisse once said, “Black is a force”.

The Alchemy of Black

Gracing neolithic cave paintings, black has been used in art since the dawn of civilisation. With the discovery of fire, so came ash, and this was humanity’s first black pigment. Dancing across palaeolithic caves, images of stags, horses and bulls were created thousands of years ago with charcoal and manganese oxides. In classical Greece, painters created a beautiful bluish-black by charring dessicated grape vines and stems, while in China, ink prized for its darkness and depth was made by mixing soot from oil lamps with animal glue. In the Middle Ages, Peach Black derived from burnt peach pits and Cherrystone Black from charred cherry stones were used for watercolours. In the Baroque era, Bone Black - from charred bones - became the dominant source of the shade because of its pure, jet-blackness. Used to mesmerising effect by artists like Rembrandt and Rubens, the darkest of pigments coloured the way to the Age of Enlightenment.

The Alchemy of Black

Gracing neolithic cave paintings, black has been used in art since the dawn of civilisation. With the discovery of fire, so came ash, and this was humanity’s first black pigment. Dancing across palaeolithic caves, images of stags, horses and bulls were created thousands of years ago with charcoal and manganese oxides. In classical Greece, painters created a beautiful bluish-black by charring dessicated grape vines and stems, while in China, ink prized for its darkness and depth was made by mixing soot from oil lamps with animal glue. In the Middle Ages, Peach Black derived from burnt peach pits and Cherrystone Black from charred cherry stones were used for watercolours. In the Baroque era, Bone Black - from charred bones - became the dominant source of the shade because of its pure, jet-blackness. Used to mesmerising effect by artists like Rembrandt and Rubens, the darkest of pigments coloured the way to the Age of Enlightenment.

At Home with Black

Create your own midnight garden with FLORA FANTASIA in ‘Noir’ paired with the deep and decadent JET. Contrary to popular belief, dark colours can be used in small spaces - painting a ceiling in black can create the illusion of infinite height and when used on walls lends a rich, calming and grounding quality to a room.


Discover a softer approach to the dark side by creating a focal wall or painting a fireplace or alcoves; the perfect backdrop to display artwork and prized possessions. 


Dark neutrals are a great way to draw a scheme together. Try our ANACONDA cut-velvet curtains in ‘Noir’, with cushions in shades of ‘Midnight’ and ‘Ink’. Add our SERPENTIS mirror in ‘Onyx’ as the final touch for foolproof colour cohesion. 


Uncover the prismatic beauty of black and let House of Hackney be your rainbow in the dark. 

Here to Help

Whether you want to coat all four walls with wonder or need advice on how to introduce
the harmonious hues of nature into your space, we are here for you. With a
decade of experience, our in-house experts are ready to help you with everything from colour matching to creating your dream interior - no space is too small or
project too big. ‌

For more information or to book your complimentary Design Consultation, simply follow the link below, and get ready to immerse yourself in the art of nature.

At Home with Green

Find paradise with this verdant hue. Renowned for its soothing, restorative properties, green is the perfect colour to use in bedrooms and bathrooms - places where you want to retreat and unwind. To create your own personal sanctuary, swathe all four (or five) walls with calming green to bring the outside in and reinvigorate the soul.  


If full on colour saturation isn’t your thing, you can still invoke the restorative powers of green. Bring the beauty of the natural world inside with an accent wall in APPLE, painted woodwork in JADEITE or a pop of pattern with the ‘Verdigris’ toned FLORA FANTASIA. Accessories are also a great way to introduce the hues of nature into the home. From the pastoral purity of botanical print curtains to sumptuous cushions and decor, with House of Hackney, it’s easy being green. 

Here to Help

Whether you want to coat all four walls with wonder or need advice on how to introduce
the harmonious hues of nature into your space, we are here for you. With a
decade of experience, our in-house experts are ready to help you with everything from colour matching to creating your dream interior - no space is too small or
project too big. ‌

For more information or to book your complimentary Design Consultation, simply follow the link below, and get ready to immerse yourself in the art of nature.