Black and white bathroom ideas for a chic monochrome look

Black and white bathrooms evoke a timeless style that works in both modern and period homes. From tiling to lighting, we showcase some of the best monochrome bathrooms to help you achieve this classic interior aesthetic for yourselves

Published: January 18, 2022 at 9:58 am
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For a chic bathroom that won't date, a black and white colour palette is just the thing. A wonderful pairing for creating calm, minimalist spaces, a black and white interior is also helpful as a canvas for brighter colours to shine from. Whether you want to complement your monochrome bathroom with a pop of pink or a dash of gold, black and white provides a fail-safe foundation for you to experiment with your decor.

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With the increasing popularity of classic-style bathrooms, black and white as a bathroom colour palette is proving to be a go-to choice for a lot of renovators. White is a practical colour for a bathroom as it creates the sense of more space, which is handy seeing as bathrooms are usually some of the smallest rooms in a house. White also reflects sunlight and helps to show up dirt, making your cleaning sessions a lot easier!

Black fixtures, meanwhile, such as Crittall-style shower screens, matt-black taps and black tile grouting evoke a cool, contemporary vibe. Black and white bathroom tiles, particularly Victorian and Edwardian designs, also work a treat in bathrooms as they add depth and character to a space. Read on for our monochrome bathroom ideas and if you love dark decor, be sure to check out our guide to black home decor and black and white kitchen ideas too.

Black and white bathroom ideas

Period black and white bathroom

To prevent the bathroom looking too dark, the couple decided to paint just the panelling in Farrow & Ball’s Railings, leaving the top half of the walls a crisp white to give the space a fresh look
To prevent their bathroom looking too dark, Emma and partner Nick decided to paint just the panelling in Farrow & Ball’s Railings, leaving the top half of the walls a crisp white to give the space a fresh look. See their bathroom makeover here.

For a truly classy bathroom, a black and white colour palette makes a great starting point. Painting wood panelling, doors and cabinets in this colour will add depth and warmth to the space, while white ceilings and floors keep things light and spacious. If you fancy a little colour, you can also add pops of rich shades like red, gold and cream.

The Turkish rug in the example above is a great way to quickly add charm and interest to a black and white bathroom scheme, and it ties in with the period features of the house, too. Gold doorknobs and statement lighting also help to achieve a characterful aesthetic.

Black and white wallpaper

Banana leaves wallpaper, £160, Wallpaperdirect

Bathroom wallpaper is an ingenious way to tap into the monochrome bathroom look. You can get creative with patterns, from period-style to modern geometric styles and statement palm leaf designs like the example above.

If you're worried about how your wallpaper will stand up to humidity, luxury wallpaper designer Elizabeth Ockford has this advice: 'If you’re concerned, apply a coat of matt water-based varnish over all the wallpaper once its hung and dry. Make sure to "seal" all the edges and joins, and this will make your wallpaper more waterproof than traditional vinyl papers.'

Modern black and white bathroom

Finding a small black framed shower cubicle was quite tricky but Judith eventually found one on eBay; it now fits snugly into the corner and has two small hinged doors, so it doesn’t take up too much space
Finding a small black framed shower cubicle was quite tricky but Judith eventually found one on eBay; it now fits snugly into the corner and has two small hinged doors, so it doesn’t take up too much space. See Judith's black and white bathroom makeover here.

Renovating a new build bathroom? Give your room instant character with monochrome decor and fixtures. This contemporary bathroom utilises black tiles, a black and white Berber rug and matte-black plumbing to create a welcoming and refreshing space.

If you're worried about your modern bathroom looking too cold with just a black and white aesthetic, add warmth and interest through soft textures, like a rug, and plants in woven baskets.

Black and white tiles

‘We saved money by managing the project ourselves and then hiring independent tradespeople’ says Jenny
Jenny's black and white bathroom makeover features distinctive monochrome wall tiles (that are actually repurposed floor vinyl!)

There is no end to our love for statement tiles, from floors to walls, bathroom tiling can take your room from drab to fab. Practical and pretty, they're a great way to inject some fun and personality into your monochrome decor scheme. Here's just a handful of our favourite black and white tiles right now...

Judith knew the limitations of the small space but still managed to pack in all of the bathroom essentials and add impact with a dramatic colour scheme
Judith has paired her statement black and white floor tiles with a rich, deep green paint on the wall.

Monochrome is far from dull. By contrasting tile styles and adding a contrasting colour like Judith has above, you can create a room packed with pattern and texture.

Try tiling part of your walls and the sides of your bath as well as your floors. It will create more of an impact in your room and means you can leave the top of your walls neutral; let the tiles do the talking!

Mosaic bathroom tiles from Tile Bar

If you have a small bathroom, statement tiles can create the illusion of space and make the room feel more inviting. If you're feeling really bold, you could even paint the walls black too and go for a total blackout! You'd be surprised how much dark decor can in fact make a room feel bigger.

Black and white fixtures

‘I knew I wanted white metro wall tiles, with dark grey grout for impact. The black Crittall-look shower screen was another must-have as it picks up the rectangular pattern.’ From Sophie's characterful house makeover.

Crittal-style showers are one of the most popular shower styles at the moment, and we can see why. Both contemporary and classic, the bold black design can work in a range of interior styles, including industrial, Scandi, Mid-Century Modern and even lavish period homes.

Black bathroom taps
Matte black bathroom taps from Morag's monochrome bathroom scheme.

For something uber-minimalist, keep colourful accents at bay and stick strictly to black and white shades. Sometimes less is more, so keeping patterns and colours muted could be a great way to make an impact in your bathroom makeover.

Black and white bathroom accessories

Style idea: Add an air of hotel luxe with twin basins
Jenny has added an air of hotel luxe with twin basins and black accessories in her bathroom makeover.

Sometimes all you need to transform a space is a few key, stand-out accessories. If renovating a bathroom isn't on the cards right now, try adding some black and white accessories to tap into the style instead. Whether it's storage baskets, lighting, towels or even hand soap, monochrome accessories will provide stylish accents to your existing interior.

Sina's small but stunning bathroom makeover is a gem of monochrome simplicity

The matte-black fixtures, minimalist soap dispensers and black reed diffuser are enough to turn a plain white bathroom into an Insta-worthy black and white scheme.

What colours go with a black and white bathroom?

Liz’s bathroom walls are painted in a delicate terracotta pink hue which works as a great canvas for green plants and black accents

If you're after some accent colours in your monochrome bathroom, we suggest pink, green, gold or teal. These shades are light enough to keep the impact of the black foundation strong but rich enough to give your room warmth.

Opium Blush Teal Bathroom, from The Curious Department
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If you love the monochrome look, check out our style guides to black decor, black & white kitchen ideas and cream kitchen inspo too!

Authors

Katie is a Staff Writer for HomeStyle magazine and YourHomeStyle.uk. She previously worked on Gardens Illustrated magazine and has written for various other lifestyle magazines and brands. She particularly enjoys writing about indie and sustainable homeware brands, interior styles through the ages, houseplants and decor hacks for small spaces. She is also responsible for HomeStyle's buyer's guides, so you'll often find her testing out the latest homeware gadgets and kitchen appliances.

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