Two trends of the moment, black and white and Scandinavian themes can make quite a pair. We’ve found two apartments that use the trends wisely, putting Scandinavia’s busy simplicity and black and white’s dramatic effects to good design use. The first space, sultry and evocative in film noir, leads out to a kitchen framed in grey and pastels, while black cabinetry grounds the rest. Our second shocks with black walls and popping cacti, which soon slur into deep, dark chocolate tones that lead into a kitchen good enough to eat. Take a look at our house tours to explore two interiors verging on the dark side.
Our first black-and-white, Scandinavian space evokes film noir. Measuring a small 57sqm, it takes advantage of existing plaster decorations and woodwork by using bold, dramatic colours. The living space shows this best, with impactful black encasing the walls. Large-scale monochrome photographs hang off a string line, matched by a case of top hats near the bottom. Different-wooden chairs are softened by black throws and pops of life, while white accents emerge in door frames and illustrated ceiling coves.
Standing out against the black, the room’s finest features glow in white. Two arched French windows let in the day, a white banquet lantern the night. Pops of white appear in heated railings, orchids, a ceiling and chest of drawers. A light tan couch and gold-rimmed glass table offer subtle comforts.
The bedroom carves its own space to the side. Relaxed grey and white bedding drape between a full-length gold mirror, standing flower lamp and lounge-reminiscent glass table. Orchids stem beside the bed, while a bonzai plays on a chest of drawers. A large black space above the bed affords room for thought and a clear path to the next room.
The kitchen and dining room brighten in lighter grey and white tones. Featuring a black-and-wood side bench, a curved grey-fern wall adds muted interest. As a classic round wooden table holds potted life, supporting plants chime in from radiators and windowsills. A bird cage holds a light and nature’s sounds.
The focal point of the room, the French window makes the space large and dark features bright. Streaming onto the bench and wooden table, a mixture of woods appear the same. Illuminated white shows off copper pots, pans and a glossy SMEG. Draped cone copper lighting completes the look, retaining a relaxed, Scandinavian feel.
The bathroom flickers in grey, black and wood, surrounded by white tiling. A simple standing basin is made eclectic by two wooden shelving units underneath. Pops of grey shine in a silver chrome sink and shower, grey curtain and newspaper-style print art.
The way out is shrouded in greenery, mirroring the kitchen. Using the same grey-and-white ferns, white French doors sit above wooden floors and contrasting black tiling. A simple wooden frame hangs the coats.
Visualizer: aTng 糖
Our second space splits black walls across living, dining and entrance areas. The lounge shows dark criss-crossing a feature wall and back corridor panels, as a simple cat illustration focuses the eye. A range of South American cacti on a low wooden table keep a square linen couch company. A white window to the side lights up rope lighting, a woollen rug and coffee table characters.
Around the corner, black fuses with chocolate covering the floor and wall. A wooden seat, hanging coat rack and rough wooden cabinet lead towards white French doors, inviting in the sun. A simple white-wooden table gathers round pastel chairs. Hanging vines drape over the dining room lamp, designating a place to eat and relax.
Slate tile floors lead to another view – the kitchen. White splashback tiles oppose black-painted walls, adding contrast. Grey cabinetry follows the floor colouring, as black and wood adorn benches, lights and a SMEG.
Like any good Scandinavian classic, the kitchen lets the little elements shine. Kitchen chrome refracts light in a stove and extractor fan, pots and spoons, while wooden pieces create contrast with coloured spices. The wooden cabinet shows off porcelain, glass mason jars and stones, while the dining table acts as a white meal canvas.
Around another hallway corner, a surprise awaits. Long, wide and eye-catching, an office and bedroom space opens itself up to Scandinavian and monochrome influences. To the right, a bed lies in white and grey, as wooden shelving holds books and pot plants. The left shows a large bench space, drilled-hole utility wall and classic black filing cabinet. Using tones of wood, and black and white interspersed with yellow, the space looks like a tool station but acts like an office. Closer inspection reveals kitschy cat paintings, a range of letter sets and everyday handyman tools in a working space for two.
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