Black is back! 10 new ways to go to the dark side

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  • Chic or safe? Here's our pick of the cool ways to decorate with black

    Although always chic, it’s funny how in fashion, black is considered the safe option whereas in interiors it has a reputation for being a little out there – a decorating choice strictly for Goths, Bohemians and the brave at heart.

    Well, time for a rethink, because black is having a comeback, both as a base colour and an accent. Think rich charcoals, matt slates and unexpected uses in graphic prints that blend the punch of black, the impact of monochrome and the beauty of layered pattern into some stunning combos. So, here’s our round-up of the latest ways to work with black – like you’ve never seen it before!

    1. See? Who said black had to be gloomy? The pops of Vitamin C orange add extra energy to this glamorous bedroom while the layered pattern, via the geometric textiles and the subtle panelling detail, make this space anything but ordinary.

    2. In a bathroom, wallpaper, pattern and any colour other than white seems to offend the purists. But going for broke with a bold floral, against a black background makes just as big a statement as a freestanding bath. This paper is Floribunda, by Clarke & Clarke.

    3. Metro, or subway tiles as our US friends call them, are a crisp, fresh way to line a kitchen wall. White or a sophisticated colour are the usual options, but we love the look of these stone-fired black numbers, which have a natural mineral texture and reflect the light just as well as high-gloss would.

    4. Another classic kitchen look, this time in the pared-back Shaker style but given a sleek refresh when worked in matt black. The copper details (hinges, handles and taps) combined with the marble work top provide the rustic elegant vibe. Kitchen by deVOL.

    5. The new way to use black is to choose something a little more textured. A slate, a charcoal, or a matt finish does the trick on this painted bedroom wall, giving it a sophisticated mood that you wouldn’t get with a satin or gloss finish. The neutral oatmeal contrast also is that little bit less severe than the usual monochrome choice of stark white while the freeform stripes just loosen up what could be an otherwise very ordered scheme.

    6. Blackboard walls work well in a family space, but here they bring fresh life into an entrance hall. All we ask is you don’t scratch your fingers down it…

    7. Pattern on pattern on texture doesn’t seem so scary when it’s worked in a single colour palette.

    8. Children’s nurseries should always be in pretty pastels? Phoo-ey.

    9. Tropical jungle prints are lots of fun but can veer towards a riot of colour. Unless you choose them in black, where you get the charm as well as the sophistication. Wallpaper and velvet upholstery, both by Designers Guild.

    10. Black walls in a kitchen don’t have to look gloomy! With plenty of light and some coloured accents, it can be really striking.

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