I’ve always loved the atmosphere of a dimly-lit, antique bookstore full of dusty volumes. Or the feeling I get when I am writing on a rainy day with a cup of tea nearby. Antiques, plaid flannel, and a fall color palette have always enticed me. It was only a few days ago, however, that I discovered there is an actual name for this aesthetic—dark academia.
The name alone invokes images of fantastic places like Hogwarts and Brakebills (the university of my current Netflix fascination: The Magicians.) Some may call it gloomy, but I think of it as cozy. I also enjoy the aesthetic’s emphasis on higher education and classic literature. And magic…let’s not forget the magic!
I’m always looking for inspiration for my next writing project, and dark academia sparked my imagination. Since I live in the States, there aren’t the same number of Gothic buildings and cobblestone streets as in other countries. However, there are plenty of historic, atmospheric places to set the mood. Even my last book, The Demon in the Tower, plays with this aesthetic.
To boost my imagination even further, I created a dark academia Pinterest board full of wonderful pictures. I’ve had a great deal of fun curating it, and am constantly looking for more additions.
What about you? What design aesthetic do you relate to?