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Using Contrast in Our Decor

Day 15 of 31 Days of Decorating Tabletops: Using Contrast in our Decor. Please pin this for later.

If white is the absence of color and black is the absence of light, then shadow is the contrast between the two. A shadow is born when a source of light is blocked. You can’t have the dark shadow without the light. That is what makes contrast so important in our decor. We can use opposite colors on the color wheel. We can use metal with soft fabric, rough objects with smooth ones,  blend luxurious collectibles with everyday utility. The easiest contrast is with color.  But, it is fascinating how light makes such a difference. Here are a few examples around my house.

Antique Cordscrews
If you read How to Decorate a Bookcase, you will remember this shelf. Since the wood is painted in our bookcase, I used dark frames to contrast. Dark just naturally shows up better against a light background.

candle grouping

Another example of light on dark, with a gold, round tray to mirror the shape of the table.

Light colored pottery

This light colored pottery shows up great against a black background.

white rabbits

As do these adorable white rabbits, a gift from my mother-in-love.

Wood box on wood table

This is an example of how to use wood on wood. The box is a darker wood than the table, so it shows up nicely.

home office

And this is how to accessorize a home office that is light in color.


I’ve used black on top of the credenza. It shows up great against beige walls and beige furniture.

accessorizing a credenza and hutch
Using Contrast in Decor

I hope you enjoyed this short tour around my house. I hope you agree that using contrast in decor helps showcase our accessories even better.

 Let me know how you use contrast in your home.

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