What do you conjure up with the word black? For me it signifies elegance and sophistication. I wouldn't be without a little black dress in my wardrobe and the same is true for me with interiors. I would generally choose a black lampshade over a white one or a black picture frame before a timber style. Faced with a dated round timber dining table, my first thought was to paint it black, which I absolutely love. I don't like lots of it and I'm not a fan of black leather at all, but just that accent here and there, for me, really defines a room. Read further to see how to use black accents in interiors.
Even if you live in a bright and airy coastal home, minor black accents, perhaps in door furniture or tapware, bring a touch of style.
The reasons that I like to use just a touch of black in interiors are:
- Dark colours recede and are not as bright and obvious as light tones. I tend to like understated interiors so this is a plus for me.
- Black goes with everything. It can change the look and feel of a room or an object, but it would rarely clash.
- Although there are underlying colours in some black finishes, they are not as tricky to work with as whites which when mixed can be very problematic.
- A touch of black in an interior adds an understated elegance – even if it is just for handles on joinery.
I am not a fan however of lots of black in interiors. I don't like black sofas and armchairs or cushions and throws. However, a cushion with a black trim or a chair with some black piping is another matter. I certainly wouldn't recommend black flooring as it just shows up too many marks and I don't like black rugs. I do love a black trim on a natural floor rug though. These can look absolutely stunning on a hall or stair runner.
I would never select black curtains but white sheers or simple linen drapes on a black metal rod look fantastic. Do you see where I'm coming from? It is my usual mantra of less is more. With such a heavy colour as black, you must use it judiciously.
When can you use more than just an accent of black?
- Kitchens and mud rooms look fabulous with black joinery. As black, like all dark tones, recedes, cabinetry in this colour is restful and doesn't take over in a space. I tend to avoid black in laundries as I feel this room should always be bright and fresh.
- Dining tables look great in black, particularly if they are partnered with chairs that are either rattan, leather, or a combination with some black elements.
I have some images to show you where black is just an accent.
I particularly like a touch of black with greige walls. Note the accents here are small; a mirror and the straps on the basket, but with great effect.
Black hardware and track system on this barn door looks amazing.
Some minimal black touches here in the cupboard handles and the metal in the chair work well to tie in the darker tones in the artwork.
The black occasional chair looks fabulous with the artwork.
A simple black curtain rod looks great next to linen sheers.
A simple black hallway bench is a nice way to link the dramatic black windows.
Have I convinced you that a touch of black could work well in your interior scheme? Would love to hear from you in the comments below.