A Tobi Fairley coffee table is paired with her Eva sofa for C.R. Laine in Derek Onyx fabric. (Patricia Sheridan / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette / TNS)

A Tobi Fairley coffee table is paired with her Eva sofa for C.R. Laine in Derek Onyx fabric. (Patricia Sheridan / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette / TNS)

Nothing as sophisticated as black and white in home design, decor

By Patricia Sheridan

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

HIGH POINT, N.C. — Design could be as simple as black and white this year.

In a home, the look is dramatic, daring and timeless. Interior designer Dorothy Draper was known for her use of black and white as far back as the 1930s.

“The black and white combo has always stood the test of time, no matter the decade or design style,” designer Tobi Fairley said.

She has teamed with C.R. Laine on an upholstery collection and with Woodbridge for case goods. Fairley’s Elle coffee table and Eva sofa match up perfectly.

“You can’t really call it a trend. It is a timeless partnership,” she said.

At the Fall Furniture Market, designers revealed their favorite takes on the classic combination, which is sure to draw consumers this year.

Designer Celerie Kemble showed off her love of simple black and white at Henredon. From her four-poster canopy bed upholstered in contrasting stripes to a living room with black lacquered display cases to a three-cushion sofa upholstered in white with black piping, she demonstrated the high level of sophistication it invokes.

Epicenters’ Austin Collection used the opposites on the Leander dresser and Round Rock martini table, while designer Kelly Wearstler added black balls to her white Pop chest manufactured by E.J. Victor. Wearstler also created the Ives console from ebonized oak and white venatino stone and steel for a very sturdy contemporary look.

Furniture and accessory manufacturer Maitland-Smith did a quirky black-faced Polar bear stool with white faux fur.

“Black and white is a sophisticated and timeless color combination,” said Nathan Copeland, president of Highland House Furniture. Highland House’s Beaufort center hall table is topped in white with black beneath.

Some designers punch up the combo with accent colors such as red, yellow, bright green and orange.

“I love black and white on their own or combined with a big pop of color like green or gold,” Fairley said.

“The color black helps to ground a room, giving it a focal point, while the color white provides a sense of freshness,” Copeland said.

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