Could You Live In a Monochrome Space?

By Cristina Cleveland
How to achieve the monochrome room trend (while still being practical)

How to achieve the monochrome room trend (while still being practical)
When I was furnishing my first home I wanted a white sofa, against the better, wiser judgement of my family and friends. I don’t have children yet, I didn’t have pets at the time; my white sofa days were numbered and I wanted to make the most of them. So I bought one and set it on a plush, white rug against all white walls. I soon discovered that the secret to keeping upholstered furniture white is to never, ever let anyone sit on it. And yet, I see beautiful rooms like this and a part of me still yearns for this ultimate minimalist palette. What about you, could you ever do a monochromatic room like this? Would you crave more color, or would it be more a matter of practicality? While I learned the hard way that a white couch rarely stays that way, there are plenty of other ways to bring this look home.

How to achieve the monochrome room trend (while still being practical)


Storage – The key to this look is stick to a strictly edited color palette. Everything that does not fit in will need to be stored away when not in use, so storage is key to making this work. Baskets and ottomans can work well for smaller, everyday items while a larger storage piece like this media console can hide wires and electronics.

Light –  The unsung hero of the inspiration photo is actually the bright natural light that is flooding the room. Never underestimate the power of good lighting! Before committing to a white paint, make sure you observe how your options appear in the light of the room – both during the day and at night. While choosing between 5 practically identical white paints can make you feel a little insane, the extra time spent will make a world of difference.

Natural materials – Woods, sisal, leather and straw are all textures and colors that work perfectly against a white backdrop. If you have hats, bags or baskets in these materials use them to accessorize to prevent the room from feeling cold or sterile.

Understated color – While the overall effect of the room can be monochromatic, there are still subtle ways that you can introduce color into a room like this. The copper of the media console and the reddish tone of the tote bag may not immediately appear to form an express palette, but attention to small details like this give a room a cohesive and well-considered feel.

Sources: Inspiration photo Villa Palmier, capiz light Serena and Lily, concrete coffee table cb2, wine Lorenza Rose California 2014, raffia stool Candelabra, woven drink table Serena and Lily, cactus print Cheryl Humphreys, tote Nomad, console LAXseries