Designing with Black & White

Posted by Megan Keisling on May 27, 2014 9:00:00 AM


When you think of a black and white color palette when designing, what comes to mind? Do you think stark, drab, or lifeless? While it may seem that going with a black and white color scheme in your home is restricting, using exclusively black and white when designing can be beautiful. We shared similar thoughts with all white or neutral color schemes. The effect can be just as stunning. 

Designer Rebecca Pollard is back today with another guest post sharing her thoughts on this particular color palette when it comes to designing one's home.



When deciding on a color palette for your home, one that is often overlooked is the most obvious: black and white. This color palette has been around since the beginning of time and yet, it is still as fresh as ever.

Some people are quick to assume that this color combination is stark and cold, but its versatility lends itself to any style of home. This can easily be translated into traditional interiors with painted walls and trim, elements of iron {namely window mullions, railings and lighting}, furniture, fabrics and/or finishes, or even a classic marble flooring. If you are looking for a more contemporary feel in your home, you can still use the aforementioned materials, but with more lacquered or high-gloss finishes on the walls, cabinets, trim, flooring or furniture. It could also be incorporated through lighting, tile, fabric, and accessories.  

Here are some great examples.



This apartment mixes highly traditional elements like the carved marble mantle and intricate mouldings with contemporary elements like the lighting and the chair, but because of the clean color palette, this living room appears absolutely timeless.



Again, there is a mix of traditional elements, the moulding, herringbone pattern on the floor, and the countertop material, but the mix of white and black allows the contemporary cabinetry design, the waterfall application of the stone on the island, and the barstools to blend seamlessly.



Painting a wall black may scare you, but this bath complete with herringbone wood floors (some contractors would not approve of using wood in a bathroom), the black and white tub, and the large window allows for an abundance of light to make the room seem larger.



Even the subtle touches of black in the cabinet frame and the ebony floors make a big impact in this kitchen. This really draws your eye into the range wall, which is the focal point of the room without being too flashy or distracting.  The touches of marble throughout also bring a serene feel to this space. 

If you are afraid to make drastic changes to your home but still like this color palette, here are a few beautiful accessories that you can incorporate into your home.


1. clock // 2. lamp // 3. peonies // 
4. book // 5. tray // 6. black and brass box // 7. floral print

What do you think about a black and white color scheme?

If you are unsure about a neutral color scheme, download these 5 tips from our design team to ensure neutral isn't boring.

5 Tips on Using Neutrals

Topics: inspiration

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