Image courtesy of Residence Style.

“Navy is definitely having a bit of a moment,” says editor of The Interiors Addict, Jen Bishop. “It’s a great choice because it has the same dramatic effect as using black on a wall but is easier to pull off as it’s a bit softer and safer. Using a dark colour can add depth to any size room – you don’t need to limit it to big rooms.”

“Navy is grounding, soft, elegant and rich,” agrees colour expert Sarah Thompson of Sarah Wood Designs Melbourne. “It‘s intimate and calming when used in bedrooms or a room with enough natural light, or can create a dramatic mood when used with floor and table lamps.”

It’s important to make sure you’re using the right navy – they aren’t all the same! “There are several shades of navy – and because it’s such an intense shade you need to pick carefully to get it right,” says Bishop. “You need to live with the colour on your walls for a while before committing. Often, when you put a few samples next to each other, the right colour will jump out at you but you need to see how it looks on the wall in different lights at different times of day. When you get it right, it can be a total game changer for the room.”

The look: Sophisticated

Use: Grey blue

“Grey undertones in navy bring sophistication to a room and prevent it from feeling beachy,” says Thompson “They need to be used in a room with a lot of natural light and sunshine as otherwise it can feel quite cold and masculine. Try Dulux Oolong (Dark) or Porters Paints Gunmetal Grey.”

The look: Contemporary

Use: True navy all over

True Navy is a traditional colour but can be brought into the present by painting the skirting the same colour as the walls,” says Thompson. “Add contemporary furniture and you’ll have a really modern look. Haymes Midnight Blue is a timeless, elegant classic.”

The look: A hint of magic

Use: Black blue

“A navy that is a blackened blue adds a moody richness and depth to a room,” says Thompson. “This colour will also bring an element of surprise to a room – in different lighting you’ll see different colours. Try Porters Paints Black Blue or Resene Indian Ink.”

The look: Intense

Use: Cool navy

Although navy is a dark colour, it can still have cool undertones. “Cool blues have a green undertone,” says Thompson. “They are great in North and East facing rooms where the light has more blue as the colour will have more intensity. Haymes Gem and Porters Paints Blue Pewter both have cool undertones.”

In the navy

“When it comes to having a dark colour on your walls you really need to own it; go hard or go home,” says Bishop. “Don’t feel you have to add lots of white accents for contrast or to brighten it up. However, if you want a less moody look – think coastal or Hamptons style – let white furnishings pop against the navy.” Thompson adds: “Natural oak and brass also work beautifully with navy.”

More of a white and bright person? Don’t miss our list of the top 10 white paints.