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Decorating Articles
  Black, White & Beautiful All Over-Decorating With Toile
By Jaima Brown (ARA)
Remember the old joke: What's black and white and read all over? Although that joke, along with its punch line, the newspaper, as well as black and white television, may all be obsolete, the fashion caché of black on white and vice versa is never out of style. Like the little black dress, this distinctive combination reeks of sophistication.

Home fashion's recurring appetite for the clear-cut distinction of black and white decorating is back in style. One reason is a growing taste for classic modern style, which originated in Europe in the 1930s. Black and white provides an ideal complement for the clean lines of modern furnishings.

Another reason, however, is the versatility of black and white. Perfect as it is for contemporary rooms, it also adds clarity and sophistication to more traditional surroundings. Like a classic string of pearls, black and white décor is comfortable in any surrounding -- formal to casual, vintage to cutting edge, urban penthouse to country cottage and everything in between.

The combination of black and white is also right for any room, by itself or accented with color -- from bright to subtle. In kitchens, black and white walls, ceilings and/or checkerboard flooring present the perfect counterpart to black appliances and also reflect the glamour of stainless steel.

Black and white in a powder room makes an easy transition from the rooms beside it. And don't count out the drama black and white brings to a living room, dining room or bedroom and master bath. In the latter, the contrast of a positive/negative effect works especially well. Paper the bedroom in a pattern of black on white, for example; then reverse the two in an adjacent bath, dressing area or inside a walk-in closet.

Independence Day Toile from the Jaima Brown Home Parasol collection brings the fine, etched quality of French toile fabric home to America. The scenes depict icons of Washington, D.C., including the Capital building and Jefferson Memorial along with script passages from the Declaration of Independence. This is truly a take-a-second-look pattern. Rendered in black and white, it is sure to be read all over.

Match it with Federal Harlequin, also from Parasol. Perfectly linear stretches of tiny black laurel leaves criss-cross in a classic diamond pattern, which is among the most sophisticated of complementary decorating designs. Cabana, a pattern of black and white awning stripes from Parasol, not only complements any other black and white pattern, but also, installed vertically, makes a short room seem tall, or, installed horizontally, broadens the vista of the smallest of rooms.

Sonata, a graceful damask from the Sarong collection, also from Jaima Brown Home, proves the timelessness of black and white. Like Independence Day toile, this pattern provides an unobtrusive backdrop for furnishings and architectural details, but becomes increasingly interesting in close-up. It makes an especially grand entrance of a two-story foyer, for instance, where it connects the décor of the first floor with the hallway and rooms above.

To see more black and white fashion and all of the fine fabric and wallpaper patterns in Sarong, Parasol and other Jaima Brown Home collections, call (888) 865-0200 or visit Jaima Brown Home collections are available through interior designers and select designer showrooms.

Courtesy of ARA Content Image: Independence Day toile in the Parasol collection from Jaima Brown Home depicts all-American icons in true toile fashion. Image: Federal Harlequin, a perfect black-and-white companion pattern, is from the same Parasol collection. Image: Sonata, a graceful damask in the Jaima Brown Home Sarong collection, proves the timelessness of black and white decorating.

Looking for more Black and White, also visit the Black and White Collection.

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