Tricks of the Trade: How Designers Warm Up Black & White Rooms

Tricks of the Trade: How Designers Warm Up Black & White Rooms

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Nancy Mitchell
Nov 19, 2014
(Image credit: Planete Deco)

Black and white is a great color combination: it's classic, it's sophisticated, you don't have to worry about whether things match. But sometimes the combo of black and white can be a bit stark. How do you create a monochromatic interior that feels elegant without being forbidding? Here are some ideas.

Above: this room, from Planete Deco, mixes in a few shades of grey along with the black and white. Interesting textures (wood, the ceiling medallion and cowhide rug) also help to warm things up.

(Image credit: So Deco)

Warm wood elements (like the antique furniture in this entry hall from So Deco) keep a black and white interior from feeling too stark.

(Image credit: Desire to Inspire)

The cowhide rug in this bathroom from Desire to Inspire performs the same function.

(Image credit: Stadshem)

Another way to make black + white work: add a little shine. Spotted on Stadshem.

(Image credit: Lonny)

This black and white interior has a certain richness to it, thanks to floral pillows and lots of interesting textures. From Lonny.

(Image credit: Lonny)

Black and white plus a little texture, a little gold. From Lonny.

(Image credit: Style at Home)

Black and white and wood and leather: elegant and classic. From Style at Home.

(Image credit: Trendenser)

This is still mostly monochrome, but the other elements (the leather stool, the oriental rug, the stove) bring a lot to the mix. From Trendenser.

(Image credit: The Style Files)

The addition of a little gold makes this black and white interior minimal but not stark. Spotted on Cross Street.

(Image credit: Rue)

A great mix of textures, from Rue.

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