Decorating with Black

In color psychology, black means power and control. It’s intimidating and secretive all at once. But in my opinion, decorating with black is classic and timeless. It adds an air of sophistication to any space … not at all overpowering when done right. (Click on photos to be taken to original on Houzz.)

Dining Room by Toronto Photographers Lisa Petrole Photography

A kitchen dining space gets a touch of black on the corner hutch and the dinette chairs. Plenty of white balances out the bold strokes of black, while a hardwood floor provides warmth and a cozy vibe.


Traditional Living Room by Portland Interior Designers & Decorators Jessica Helgerson Interior Design

I love this space! The black trim looks crisp and clean against the white walls. Again, wood floors add warmth. I love the  modern fixture above the dining table, the industrial style floor lamp, and the elegant butterfly cloches. I would never think to put these items together, but there’s something so endearing about it.


Traditional Kitchen by Sausalito Architects & Building Designers Urrutia Design

Sometimes just a bit of black is all that’s needed. In this beautiful kitchen, black countertops, black chairs, and a black French door create visual interest along with the brick backsplash … all set off by white cabinets and walls.


Traditional Kids by South Pasadena Architects & Building Designers Nott & Associates

Black pairs so well with any color. I love it with yellow, although I don’t think many people use this color combination in their homes. Black accents can make a girl’s bedroom feel more grown-up.


Bathroom by Melbourne Architects & Building Designers Whiting Architects

Would you paint your bathtub black? This bathroom has a funky vibe with its highly patterned floor and random knobs on the wall for hanging towels.


Farmhouse Dining Room by Austin Architects & Building Designers Tim Cuppett Architects

Black is always a smart choice for the clean lines of Shaker style decor. There’s nothing fussy about Shaker interiors and when painted black, it’s clean and beautiful.


Traditional Bathroom by Winter Park Architects & Building Designers Phil Kean Design Group

A great way to accentuate something special is to give it a coat of black.

This attractively arched door takes center stage in the entrance to a bathroom.


Aspen Architects & Building Designers Rybak Architecture & Development, P.C.

Most people wouldn’t choose black for a sun room, but with all the natural light it’s not at all dreary.


Exterior by Philadelphia Architects & Building Designers Eberlein Design Consultants Ltd.

You can class up the outside of your home with touches of black. Red brick is the perfect background for black shutters, which bring sophistication to the exterior of this classic home.


Contemporary Patio by Toronto Interior Designers & Decorators Terra Firma Design

Bring black into your backyard too with patio furniture and an umbrella to match!

So what do you think? Are you a fan of decorating with black? Think about ways you can add it to your home. As a friend once told me … “Every home needs a touch of black.”

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  1. I know there are those people out there who think decorating with black is all gloom and doom but I, for one, think there is nothing more chic or classic than a bit of black to add a little drama and interest. I especially like a combination of black and white but, I agree, it pairs well with or makes a good contrast for many other colors on the wheel. I especially enjoyed your post today about how to use black in decor.

  2. Jennifer, thanks for sharing this. I’m thinking about redecorating my laundry/bathroom black and my family thinks I’m crazy. Now, I can show them these pictures you shared to prove to them that it can be done!. I love black. I like how it makes a room look “classic and sophisticated” too. So glad you shared this!

  3. I was reading an article in Country Living about a year ago and the designer they were speaking with said she always includes at least one black element in each room she designs. Since then I have been trying to incorporate more black into my decorating and I have to admit that it really seems to ground some rooms. I have an aqua and white bathroom and when I added a black wall sconce and a picture with a black frame, it really pulled the room together.

  4. I think black shows more dust than a light color so I would pass. I only know this because my stove is black and is a nightmare to keep clean 🙂

  5. I love these ideas. I have a cherry topped dining table with black legs with black bow back chairs in my kitchen. I had matching black bow back bar stools. I painted the interior of the front door black, it was mostly glass, so the front hall wasn’t at all dark. In the same foyer the French doors to the office were also painted black. It looked amazing.