Ebony and Ivory

The simplicity and elegance of black-and-white interiors attracts design-minded homebuyers

Written by Wendy Bowman | Photo Courtesy of Jeff Elson

What’s black and white and sophisticated all over? The latest design trend, of course, and it’s prevalent all across L.A. “Whether in tiles, sculptures, drawings, carpets or furniture, people are looking for that timeless, stark yet dramatic impact that black and white does so well,” says internationally recognized artist and designer Pablo Solomon, who has been touting the chic style’s resurgence in magazines nationwide since 2010.

What exactly sparks his love for the classic color combination? “It is the simplicity, impact and elegance of design,” Solomon says. “The great thing for the average person wanting to update some furniture or decorative objects is that black-and-white paints can be found in every formula and means of application, and some of the greatest black-and-white art prints of all time can be purchased as open-edition prints for poster prices.”

Here in L.A., architects and designers are following Solomon’s lead, using a streamlined approach to décor that incorporates stylish and minimal design with a stunning black-and-white color scheme. For instance, the high contrast of black and white in this newly constructed home at 16410 Bosque Drive in Encino helps to create areas of emphasis and direct the buyer’s eye. And when coupled with shades of rich gray, the two hues remain neutral, without appearing lackluster.


“A strategic black-and-white palette works perfectly when you introduce glamorous gold accents or warmer wood tones,” says Sally Forster Jones of John Aaroe Group, who is listing the residence for $4.48 million. “The black accents dramatically pull your eye to focus on the fine details that were placed in the kitchen—paired with the elegance of the gold finishes.”

Having black above the white wainscoting on the living and dining room walls also works to showcase the soaring ceilings. “Black and white is timeless and creates high contrast, which can be ideal for emphasizing fine finishes and important features,” Forster Jones says. “It’s all about finding that correct balance of color selection and deliberate placement.”

One thing’s for sure, the home’s magical color scheme surely works together in perfect harmony.


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