Working with White Walls: How to Design a Space You Love

Many people cringe at the thought of working with plain, white walls. Often times white walls are the only option when living in an apartment complex or renting a home. Courtney Otte, Interior Designer and owner of The Modern Hive Design Studio, shows how to how to work with white walls and create a space you love!

Designing a white space is one of Courtney’s favorite missions. “It’s a blank slate, so the possibilities are endless,” she explains.

  • Create an elegant space with a chromatic scheme by utilizing furniture and décor of one color with many hue variations.
  • Design a mature space with an all black and white theme.
  • Invent an energetic modern space by using pops of color with high contrast and funky shapes and patterns. The list goes on!

Check out this space designed by The Modern Hive for The Mason St. Apartments in Omaha, NE.

how to work with white walls | living room inspirationThe white walls serve as a neutral, modern backdrop to highlight the vibrant colors used.

White walls +  pops of colorWhen working with multiple pops of color, be sure to utilize a color wheel if you’re unfamiliar with colors that work well together. This will help you pair complimentary colors and avoid colors that clash.  In the Mason St. apartment, Courtney paired vibrant hues of green, yellow, blue, and red.

Adding art and detail to the wall is key – it adds interest and character. Try looking for a large piece of art with striking colors to set the tone for the space, or consider adding an accent wall with a fun wallpaper pattern that works with your color palette.

how to work with white walls | living room inspirationTo complete the room, make sure to include fun light fixtures that will illuminate enough light. To fit the theme here, Courtney used modern lamps with bold color. If you have high enough ceilings, hang a fixture in the center of the living room to add elegance and to make the space feel complete.

Love the Mason St. Apartment’s design? Get the look with these exclusive items that can be purchased at The M|H Collection!

 The Modern HiveShop The M|H Collection


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  1. Samantha says:

    I love this design! I may have to take some of these tips into account. My only problem currently is that along with white walls, I have maroon/scarlet carpeting, which doesn’t help with trying to have a blank slate to work from. :P I am also working with hand me down furniture, so my mileage varies :P

  2. […] and embrace the beautiful natural light that flows throughout the space, Courtney painted the walls white and installed picture moulding above and below a chair […]

  3. Agatha says:

    This is so elegant. We have white walls but every time we want to hang a picture it keeps falling off. The walls are solid concrete – any ideas? Thank you! Via CBN

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