Style in Contrast: How to Pull off a Black and White Themed Room

What does black and white make you think of? Zebras? Crossword puzzles? Referees? Piano keys? Maybe even a chess board?

If it makes you think of a great design plan for any room in your home, then you’ve come to the right place. Just like the film in an old movie, black and white is a classic home décor scheme that’s guaranteed not to look dated and doesn’t take a design pro to do right. You just need a little imagination and a willingness to walk on the wild side.

Focus on Contrasts

Pulling off a black and white room is all about playing up contrasts. You don’t want it to feel like a scene from Alice in Wonderland – where the checkerboard overwhelms poor Alice – but you do want to let each tone have its moment.

If you choose white or light-colored flooring, pick dark furniture to off-set it. On the other hand, if you’ve inherited a lot of white furniture that you just don’t know what to do with, black is the prefect answer to make it look chic and modern.

In recent years, dark hardwood flooring has really seen a rise in popularity. Imagine having black hardwood flooring accented by white furniture. Bamboo is a great and environmentally sustainable choice that holds black stain well and looks impressive in any setting.

You could then crank the contrast up a notch by featuring black and white area rugs throughout the room. This is your chance to really let your creativity show. Bring out the unexpected with a zebra pattern rug like this one from Dalyn:

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Highlight a Bold Color – An overall scheme of black and white in a room also gives you optimal chance to show off a bold color. Let’s say you’ve got a white couch and that gorgeous black bamboo floor we talked about. The room would look a little blah if we just stopped there. Choose a bold color you love, but wouldn’t want to cover an entire room in, and add it to your room as an accent.

You could add throw pillows in a deep red to the couch or add an end table in a funky color like violet or orange. Window treatments and wall décor are another place where one or more bold colors can come into play. Imagine how modern and cool a set of lime green curtains would look in this setting!

Now, we’re not suggesting you use all these colors at once. The key is to pick one fun statement color and play it up. Simple accents like this also give you the chance to switch them out easily, either to fit with a particular season or just for an easy chance of pace.

Let Some Light In

Lighting is another key issue when it comes to pulling off a black and white room well. Dark furniture or dark flooring mean you’ll want plenty of light to keep the room from looking cramped or drab. With this in mind, a room with lots of natural light is always a great choice for this style.

This is another area when you can really let your creativity and sense of style show. If you’ve got an otherwise modern look going, give your lighting an old-fashioned twist with a crystal chandelier or stick with the theme and use one that’s been painted white.

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Tabletop lamps with colored shades are also a good choice. With a black and white scheme, the possibilities here are endless – use a bold color again or go a little crazy with a funky print. There’s nothing wrong with your run-of-the-mill ceiling fixture or track lighting, but when you have a room that makes as big of a statement as the one we’ve described, you don’t want to stop short at the lighting.

Whether you choose to wake up every day in a room like this or entertain in a black-and-white dining room fit for the Queen of Hearts, we hope we’ve given you some ideas to take home. It’s one look you and your visitors are sure to find utterly classic.

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