Just two colors – it’s not boring! We tell you how to decorate any room or an entire apartment in black and white to make it look impressive and stylish.
Bright colors are not for everyone. If you primarily expect tranquility from your home environment, a black-and-white apartment interior will be the ideal solution. In this article, we will analyze the pros and cons of this classic combination and tell you how to play it up in different rooms so that the space looks organic and not boring.
Advantages and disadvantages
Any color combination will have both fans and opponents – simply because each person has their own tastes and expectations from the interior. Let’s consider the advantages and disadvantages of an achromatic pair.
- This is a classic. Like other neutral colors (brown, gray, beige), white and black will not lose their relevance – they are a non-trend base. At the same time, you can easily dilute such a palette with bright textiles or decor, and then change them at any time or remove them altogether, returning to a restrained palette.
- Both achromats are universal and impersonal in a good sense. They are not associated with any gender stereotypes and do not cause negative associations. They do not overload the nervous system, like bright red, and do not cause depression, like dark blue in large quantities. Thanks to this, they are suitable not only for any room but also for any person – for example, such a range would be very successful for an apartment for rent.
- They are easy to combine. For those who renovate without a designer, it is often difficult to choose shades and create a harmonious palette. This requires either innate talent or great observation – or better yet, both. You definitely can’t go wrong with a black-and-white combination. The main thing is to choose the right proportions and not to overdo it with dark elements.
- Achromatic tones look restrained and at the same time expensive, and together they create a spectacular contrast, which in itself makes the interior bright.
- With their help, you can visually adjust the proportions of the room. For example, adding more light areas will make the space seem larger than it is.
- It can be boring. The main complaint about achromatic interiors is their impersonality and flatness. But this effect is created not by specific shades, but by the ill-conceived design as a whole. The perception of space is influenced by many different factors: shapes and silhouettes, materials, lighting, variety of textures, furniture, decor, etc. If you do a good job with the interior, it will look stylish and catchy even without bright colors in the palette.
- Color selection is limited. It seems that such a decision greatly limits freedom. But you can always add a couple of bright details to the palette for contrast or a local additional color (for example, a shade of gray or natural wood color), and also focus on clear lines and pronounced textures.
- Both colors are easily soiled. In fact, this can be said about any shade, but the point, again, is in the nuances. Yes, dark matte furniture in the kitchen or snow-white walls in the hallway sounds impractical. The problem is solved with the help of suitable surfaces and materials: for example, glass wallpaper of any color washes better and lasts longer than the cheapest vinyl.
The black and white interior of the rooms
Let’s look at how to beautifully implement black and white style in the interior of different rooms.
Black walls in the kitchen are rarely done, but dark furniture is now in trend. However, it is not suitable for every apartment.
The smaller the area, the more light colors there should be in the palette. If you have a tiny niche kitchen or a five-meter apartment in Khrushchev, it is better to make an almost total white interior, and use dark details locally: for example, for a countertop or apron, fittings, lamps, bar counter, etc.
A snow-white set with a dark tabletop or apron looks unusual – it turns out graphic and stylish. This technique looks especially good when there is a texture of marble, stone, or concrete. If there is not enough sun in a room, it may look cold. Complement a pair of achromats with a cozy wood texture: it can be a floor, a work surface, a dining table, or shelves instead of an upper tier.
In minimalist, high-tech, and loft interiors, a monochrome dark set with built-in appliances and smooth surfaces is often used. It looks very impressive, but it’s important to remember two things:
- Firstly, deep colors hide the space, and the set occupies almost the entire kitchen area. Therefore, this design is suitable if the room is not too small, there is enough light and high ceilings.
- Secondly, be thoughtful when choosing materials. Matte graphite fronts create a wow effect, but they will have to be washed constantly, and any fingerprints or grease stains will be very visible. If you like the idea of a dark set, it’s better to choose a glossy or semi-gloss finish – or be prepared for daily cleaning.
A room in two colors with well-chosen finishes, furniture, and decor will look elegant and expensive.
What is important to consider when designing a black and white living room:
- To make the space harmonious, first of all, think about the relationship between the elements of the palette. If you distribute them in equal proportions, the interior will seem too colorful.
- In most cases, it is better to choose a light shade for finishing: snow-white, pearl, ivory. The undertone depends on the amount of sun in the room, its size, and overall style. So, for example, for Scandi, eco, or classic it is better to take warm creamy shades. For minimalism, loft, and contemporary, a snow-white finish is suitable.
- The ceiling should also be made light. Floor – in any shade. It can be light gray, cold graphite, brown or beige.
- There is no point in making absolutely all the furniture in the living room black. Let these be the largest objects: a sofa, a chest of drawers, a wall, a table in the dining area. For the rest, use transitional shades of gray or beige.
- But if you are not afraid of bright and bold decisions, then you can do the opposite. For example, make a dark accent wall and place snow-white furniture against its background. The result is a graphic and non-standard composition that immediately attracts the eye.
- Also, do not forget about the decor – it can be in the general range or, conversely, accentuated. Use a variety of textiles to add texture and coziness, vases and figurines, paintings and posters. Stucco moldings will fit well into such a duo-chrome space: moldings, cornices, pilasters, etc. Moreover, such decor is suitable not only for classical styles but also perfectly complements modern trends, be it scandi, contemporary, or discreet minimalism.
A black and white bedroom interior will help you relax after a busy day and give your eyes a break from the abundance of colors.
In this room, the approach to design should be different: it is important not to compensate for the lack of bright colors in the palette with contrasting combinations and pronounced geometry, but, on the contrary, to soften the atmosphere as much as possible.
To do this use:
- Smooth outlines of furniture, rounded lines, curved silhouettes.
- Tactilely pleasant textures: wood, natural fabrics, multi-layer textiles. A good option is a bed with a soft frame or at least a headboard.
- A couple of pots with live plants.
- Multi-level lighting with local lamps that provide muted soft light, or lighting around the perimeter of the floor or stretch ceiling.
- Shades of gray and beige complement the main palette.
For a child’s room, this combination seems inappropriate to many, because the interior of a child’s room should be bright and cheerful.
But the achromatic range should not be gloomy at all. In addition, in the nursery, it can be complemented with bright accents, warm wooden textures, and thematic prints. For example, stars on wallpaper or curtains, polka dots, and small abstract or geometric patterns look very cute (this technique is especially often used in the Scandinavian style ). Another good option is artistic painting or stylized photo wallpaper. They can depict a variety of subjects: fairy-tale motifs, space, city outlines, sketches, drawings of cars or airplanes, and silhouettes of favorite characters.
And in the nursery, there is a perfect place for a slate board. It can occupy the entire wall or some part – for example, in a creativity area. Also, slate paint is applied to the door leaf of the hidden installation: this solves both the issue of finishing and entertaining the child.
Most often, standard non-staining colors are selected for the hallway: gray, beige, khaki, and brown. But you don’t have to limit yourself to them.
A contrasting two-color combination will look original and impressive, and several techniques will help make it more practical:
- Suitable materials. Choose high-quality washable wallpaper, paint or decorative plaster for finishing. It is important that the material not only is not afraid of moisture but is also wear-resistant and can withstand repeated contact with household chemicals. For the floor, porcelain stoneware, quartz vinyl, or tiles are best.
- The same goes for furniture. It is better to cover natural wood and upholstery fabrics with protective varnish and impregnation, respectively (if the manufacturer has not done this, you can handle the task yourself).
- Use ornaments – they hide surface imperfections and dirt. Of course, you will still have to clean the hallway, but against such a background, dirt stains and dust will be less noticeable. The smaller or more contrasting the pattern, the better.
Despite the fact that the bathroom is usually small in size, you can safely experiment with its design. For example, make a black ceiling, choose a bright pattern for the walls or floor, and install accent plumbing fixtures.
Main -Follow the basic rules when decorating your bathroom:
- Maintain proportions in the palette: the main color should be 60-70%, the second color should be 20-30%, and accents should be up to 10%.
- If you want to make your bathroom visually more spacious, choose a light base and local dark details. For example, snow-white or cream tiles on the walls and black plumbing.
- If the main colors are dark, consider sufficient lighting, and also use mirrored and glossy surfaces that will additionally reflect light and add air to the small room.
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