Tak­ing a mono­chrome ap­proach could be a per­fect stress-free so­lu­tion for decor. Homes & Liv­ing takes a look at life in black and white.

Kentish Gazette Canterbury & District - East Kent Property - - INDOORLIVING -

Some­times we long for life to be sim­ple and our choices black and white, in the hope that con­fu­sion can be avoided.

That’s rarely re­al­is­tic un­for­tu­nately, but tak­ing a mono­chrome ap­proach could be rel­a­tively stress-free.

No one’s more con­vinced of the merit and power of a clas­sic black and white pair­ing than Hilary Robertson, au­thor of new book Mono­chrome Home.

“White loves black. Black loves white. Ex­plor­ing their re­la­tion­ship builds an in­te­rior which is time­less, flex­i­ble, prac­ti­cal and lib­er­at­ing,” she en­thuses.

“By re­strict­ing the colour pal­ette, hav­ing a colour cleanse if you like, any num­ber of eclec­tic el­e­ments can eas­ily ex­ist hap­pily to­gether; in­ex­pen­sive or sim­ple things will look more so­phis­ti­cated and dec­o­rat­ing de­ci­sions are made eas­ier.”

Choos­ing a mono­chrome in­te­rior is a min­i­mal­ist stance, she points out, but more than that, it’s a re­fusal to get caught up in the drama of colour, with all the at­ten­dant com­pli­ca­tions of what goes with what, which all too of­ten be­dev­ils the ama­teur dec­o­ra­tor.

“Once you de­cide all the colours of the rain­bow are not an op­tion and com­mit to a mono­chrome scheme, you won’t find it re­stric­tive or as dras­tic as it sounds,” she re­as­sures. “Cre­ativ­ity can flour­ish within the bound­aries of black, white, grey and all the shades in be­tween. It ac­tu­ally af­fords the dec­o­ra­tor con­sid­er­able free­dom to ex­per­i­ment with mix­ing pieces from dif­fer­ent decades, adding pat­tern and lay­er­ing tex­ture.”

De­cid­ing which type of ‘monochromist’ you are, she says, will en­sure your in­ter­pre­ta­tion truly matches your taste. “Just as there are night peo­ple, who favour black and moody, at­mo­spheric bolt holes, there are oth­ers who pre­fer to bathe in light with black merely pro­vid­ing a sub­tle con­trast,” she points out.

Mono­chrome Home by Hilary Robertson is pub­lished by Ry­land Peters & Small, priced £25. Avail­able to read­ers for the spe­cial price of £18 (inc p&p). Call Macmil­lan Direct on 01256 302 699 and quote ref GLR CN4.

Be­spoke Thun­der­bird chair and ot­toman, from £2,070, Rory Dob­ner cat cush­ion, £95, www.rume.co.uk

Har­lequin china teapot, £95; cof­fee pot, £99; cup and saucer, £50; jugs from £30; plates from £35; mugs from £15 each, www.jan con­stan­tine.com Char­coal Drift paint shade, 24.49, avail­able from Du­lux, see www. du­lux. co.uk

Vic­to­rian black and white che­quer tile, £5.49 a tile, £66.19 a square me­tre, avail­able from Topps Tiles

Mon­soon Sa­bal Wall­pa­per, £129, www.ur­bane­liv­ing.co.uk

Chelsea black roller blind, £119, www.di­ge­tex­home.co.uk Black and white enamel pot, £4.95 to £7.95, hand painted ex­otic an­i­mal egg cup, £10.95, www.rig­byand­mac. com

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