How to Incorporate Black into Your Kitchen

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Image: Tara Donne on Design Sponge , Styling: Rebecca Donnelly

The thought of using the color black in interior design tends to bring up a lot of questions and preconceived ideas. I’ve had people challenge me on the very idea of black being a color! And black is so often thought of as funereal, gothic, drab, and unwelcoming, that many simply discount it as being hard to live with. The thought of using the color black in kitchen design—in the room that is the heart of the home—is enough to make even the most adventurous people question my judgment. I want to dispel some of those preconceptions by taking a look at some very successful uses of black in the kitchen.

“It’s Too Heavy”

If you’re concerned that black will take over your space or create disharmony, use it sparingly—like in the kitchen above, where only the pendants, the stove, and the switch plates are black. Instead of feeling heavy, these items take on the role of key accessories in the overall design.

“It Doesn’t Go with Anything”

Well Done: Using Black in the Kitchen

Design & Image: SchappacherWhite Architecture

Contrary to the sentiment about black clashing, one of the best qualities of black is that it tends to go with everything! And in many cases, like in this contemporary kitchen, it simply disappears and leaves you enjoying the other finishes in the space.

Well Done: Using Black in the Kitchen

Design: naturehumaine , Image: Adrian Williams on Archello

Here’s a second example of how well black works in harmony with the rest of a kitchen. Using black as the primary hue in the lower half of the above space sets off the other elements of the kitchen and helps elevate what might otherwise be plain and boring surfaces.

“It’s Boring”

Well Done: Using Black in the Kitchen

Design & Image: Peter Fehrentz & Dwell

With the availability of lustrous finishes—like the black subway tile shown in the above kitchen—and the imaginative use of other colors and surfaces in the space, there’s no limit to the creativity you can bring to your kitchen using black.

How have you used black in your kitchen?

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Dave Hime, founder/curator of, has been an interior design addict for as long as he can remember. In 2005, he bought a house-in-progress and missed several opportunities to have an influence on his own home decor–leaving him wanting more. With design heroes such as Blake Dollahite ( and Robert & Cortney Novogratz (, Dave began seeking out online resources that would exemplify the interior design practices he's most drawn to: using color, texture and simple materials well. Bringing all of this together, along with his specific focus on providing interior design inspiration from a man's point of view, is Dave's mission: masculine design.