15 Black-and-White Bedrooms

Black and white are the most versatile colors to use when decorating. Whether designing a timeless crisp look or one that's dramatic and moody, discover how to use these classic hues to create a designer-inspired bedroom.
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November 25, 2014
By: Amanda Lecky
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Animal Magnetism

Black-and-white animal print pillows and a matching bed skirt add movement to the otherwise tailored look of designer Dayka Robinson's own bedroom. Bamboo shades and a hammered brass lamp lend warmth and textural interest. Design by Dayka Robinson Designs

Winning Combination

Black and white is a great choice when you want to add a splash of personality to any space, from the bedroom to the foyer. "Here, I infused drama by embracing a very large-scale pattern on the walls and using a chest with bold, contrasting paint," says designer Tobi Fairley of Tobi Fairley Interior Design.

Pattern Play

Decorating with strong pattern can be tricky because it's easy for the design to overwhelm the space. Sticking with a very simple black-and-white palette tones down the wallpaper's impact for an effect that's engaging and fun, but not too distracting. "I chose this wallpaper for a guest room in a beach house," says designer Tara Seawright of Tara Seawright, Inc. "It's the perfect place to make a dramatic statement without worrying about pattern fatigue."

Not-So-Basic Black

"We all know there are thousands of different whites, but most people don't realize that black comes in different shades as well," says designer Erin Benedict of Benedict August Interiors and Design. "The black used in this project is actually chalkboard paint, which has its own magical quality. Chalkboard paint has a dead flat sheen and the chalk residue gives it a slightly mottled look (kind of like a barely perceptible faux finish). The combination gives it a lovely soft, velvety texture that we played up in this room by using it as a backdrop for the apple green high-gloss lacquered chest. The contrast is dramatic and fun. Also, the 'white' trim in this room is actually cream but it reads as a warm white because it contrasts against the black."

Child's Play

Black and white even works well in a kids' room — creating the perfect backdrop for bright toys, books and accessories. Here, designer Holly Bender of Holly Bender Interiors chose a black-and-white zebra rug to create movement in a room that boasts rich, gray walls. "I love deep shades of gray like Benjamin Moore's Chelsea Gray. It provides a warm, yet modern, feel and really pops against white trim," says Bender.

Perfect Accent

Black paint can be just right in a bedroom — even one that's light, bright and airy — if you use it judiciously. "Accent walls haven't gone out of style, especially when done in chic colors," says designer Dayka Robinson of Dayka Robinson Designs. "Don't be afraid of a black focal wall. When combined with a bright accent color, graphic prints and eclectic accessories, the resulting look is bold, clean and modern."

Fresh Look

A coat of glossy white or black paint can take an otherwise dull piece of furniture to sassy new heights. For example, designer Emily Johnston Larkin of EJ Interiors treated an uber-traditional dining chair to a new finish, making it the perfect complement to the black and white lattice-print window treatments and zig-zag-printed bolster pillows.

Defining Details

The graphic combination of black and white works as an accent and an overriding design theme, as demonstrated by this open and airy bedroom designed by Michelle Miller of Michelle Miller Interiors. "We wanted the overall feeling of this bedroom to be very soothing," says Miller. "But we also wanted to add a bit of whimsy. So, we had a custom headboard fabricated in a bold black-and-white stripe, with nailheads to add a bit of texture. An oversized white lamp with a black shade completes the look without overpowering the room."

Standout Design

To create a look that's both clean and dramatic, allow graphic elements — like a high-impact headboard or a sculptural lamp — to stand out against a neutral background, says designer Emily Johnston Larkin of EJ Interiors. "In this bedroom, we went with really edgy patterns and fabric but used them in small doses as not to overwhelm the room. We thought that a neutral and white background (white bedding and tan walls) would make these fabrics really stand out and provide a clean backdrop to the graphic patterns."

Space Expander

"One of the greatest design myths is that black will make a space look smaller," says designer Michael Habachy of Habachy Designs, who used black walls to dramatic effect in this master bedroom. "On the contrary: black walls can make the space feel larger, because it blurs the visual edges of the room. Just think of the night sky, which has a sense of infinite space," says Habachy.

Focal Point

Bold black-and-white wallpaper turns a space with quirky architectural elements into an arresting focal point — no headboard required. Designer Alexandra Assaf of Design by AA carried the flocked pattern of the wallpaper onto the accent pillows and chose a warm white — Sherwin-Williams' Casa Blanca — for the adjacent walls. "The overall look is crisp, clean and inviting," says Assaf.

Multifunctional Appeal

To create a space that's as welcoming for guests as it is useful, designer Lisa Sherry of Lisa Sherry Interieurs created a custom queen-size bed that works as a bed when guests come to stay or as a sofa when the room is functioning as a home office. "Bold, mod stripes and a vintage portrait infuse this room with energy and subtle color," says Sherry.

Contemporary Cottage Style

A mix of bold, graphic patterns in a simple black-and-white palette infuse a traditional space with updated edge — without veering from the room's architectural style. "High contrast equals high impact in this simple cottage bedroom, while vintage headboards and old-fashioned roller shades provide nostalgic charm," says designer Tom Stringer of Tom Stringer Design Partners.

Stripe It Rich

Simple, but so sophisticated, black-and-white striped drapes create an instant focal point of an oversized window — and don't have to cost a fortune, says designer Sarah Macklem of The Yellow Cape Cod, who made the window treatments herself. "I used iron-on fabric bonding tape to attach black fabric stripes to ready-made twill drapes, finishing the raw edge with grosgrain ribbon. This was a simple and inexpensive DIY project that had huge impact in the space. These drapes are a great example of black-and-white decor that is anything but boring."

Study in Contrasts

In a richly colored room, the cooling influence of black and white can be just what the doctor ordered. "Since the violet walls in this bedroom are very bold, the furniture and bedding needed to tone the look down," says designer Brian Patrick Flynn, who chose art and bedding with a chic black, white and gray color scheme, for balance.

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