Black and White – How to use this Classic Color Combination to Highlight Your Personal Style

What images come to mind when you think of black and white? The glamour of old Hollywood films, a classic Chanel suit, the iconic Vans checkers, the Michael Jackson song? No matter the era, "black and white" has been a mainstay in our global culture. It is considered one of the most iconic color combinations in interior design history. Whether you prefer the basics or covet bright, bold color, a black and white base can cater comfortably to both design sensibilities.

Ironically, both black and white are noted as having a "lack of color," yet with this combination, color certainly does matter. Making the right paint choice can determine the total look and feel of the room.

The finishes are more of a consideration here as a high sheen black will highlight every surface imperfection, while also delivering major drama. - Philippa Radon

Click here to read more about choosing the right white and click here to learn about our favorite black (and near-black) paint colors!

Many people are intimidated by a black and white color combination for fear it will come off too modern and minimalist, but in reality, its crisp palette provides the perfect backdrop for various styles of décor. 

What's your black and white style? 


This is where the drama takes center stage. For those who appreciate the glamour of black and white movies, this is for you. Think gold light fixtures, art deco patterns, and classic regency furniture styles. You can really express your inner diva when choosing accessories for this look.

"Upholstered velvet. Glimmering brass details. Sleek, geometric visuals. These are just a few ways to describe Hollywood Regency style, made popular back in the 1930s and '40s in — you guessed it — Hollywood. Naturally, this design approach is all about elegance, mixed with jolts of bright colors and nods to art deco, midcentury and even Grecian aesthetics." – via


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As life gets more complicated, many of us are embracing the art of simplicity. A black and white color palette seems custom made for this design style, which is often used to accent the beauty of structures and architectural accents. Using a monochromatic color scheme can advance the minimalism theme by focusing on clean lines and pure, uncluttered beauty.


Bohemian Outdoors

Black and white play well with others, even those that covet lush surroundings, lots of foliage, tons of texture, and a bohemian, lived-in flair. Especially when paired with natural elements, you'll find that black and white adds sophistication to this laid-back look.


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You wouldn't think that black and white would work in a kid's room. It actually provides an unexpected canvas for a variety of colors and patterns when paired with the right accents. You can go monochrome with greys, add subtle softness with pastels or add bright splashes of color for a dose of whimsy. Etsy has an abundance of creative kid's room accessories! Check out the unique black and white artwork from Kubem Studio. Adding lots of texture helps warm up the room and complete the look.


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It seems like everywhere you look, home exteriors are touting the black and white combo on the outside. This transitional/traditional look exudes a classic, contemporary vibe and looks stunning when surrounded by nature.

Black and white definitely seems to be a new trend these days with monochromatic exterior builds. Transitional traditional style or even the contemporary barn style tends to be more dominant in black than white. It seem to confirm the psychology of this colour pairing standing for decisiveness. Add some landscape greenery to accent either direction and its a match made in heaven.  - Philippa Radon

Our Favorite Black and White Accent Colors 

Emerald Green = Chic & Confident

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Wood and Natural Tones = Grounded & Earthy 

Blush and Mid-tone Greys = Clean, Nordic-inspired palette 

 Click here for more mood boards and inspiration!

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