Why do the fashion savvy often reach for that black dress or suit in their closets when they are getting ready to attend a special event? Maybe they know that nothing evokes class and elegance better than basic black. Or perhaps they choose black because it pairs beautifully with colorful accessory items. Possibly, black is their color of choice because it suggests drama and mystery. Whatever the case, the same reasoning can be applied when using black concrete for interior designs: it’s classy, it pairs well with other colors, and it amps up the drama. It’s also a look that will never go out of style. Here we showcase concrete countertops, hearths, and other design elements that demonstrate the versatility of basic black.

A Black Concrete Island

The owner of this home wanted the look of soapstone countertops, but needed a material that was more scratch resistant and less expensive. Black concrete countertops provided the durability he was after, while beautifully setting off the white cabinetry. Using concrete also permitted the installation of a built-in drainboard, which was cast integrally with the countertop.

Black Concrete Mimics Soapstone

Resembling a ship, or perhaps a giant surfboard, this 18-foot-long concrete island is jet black and makes the perfect complement to this home's modern glass and steel decor. The black color was integrally mixed into the concrete to achieve complete color saturation.

Black Concrete Bench and Fire Bowl Create a Zen-Like Retreat

Recreating the tranquility of a Japanese tea garden, this outdoor deck features a number of custom-crafted concrete elements, including a charcoal-colored curvilinear bench with matching back panels, a fire bowl partially inset into one end of the bench, and a pale green tea-stained firewall curving around the bowl. The dark gray of the bench and panels was achieved using an integral carbon-black pigment.

Eco-Friendly Black Countertops

Tim Boening, owner of Petra Cast Stone, built and installed black, honed concrete countertops and a concrete fireplace surround in his Grand Rapids, Mich., home. Boening makes his own eco-friendly concrete mix using recycled materials, such as slag, fly ash and silica fume. The countertops were integrally colored with a dry iron-oxide black pigment.

Black Hearth and Backlit Fireplace

The hearth for this stunning backlit fireplace is integrally colored black concrete containing pieces of crushed glass, revealed by polishing. The 20-foot-tall fireplace surround is made from seven panels of dark gray concrete, stacked from floor to ceiling, with backlit frosted glass channels to augment the flames.

Black Kitchen Island Spans Nine Feet

This modern home features an expansive charcoal-colored kitchen island with a free span of 9 feet from the cabinet to the vertical leg. Another concrete countertop with an integral trough sink was cast in the same color. Both blend seamlessly with the kitchen’s black cabinets and stainless steel hardware.

Additional resources:All of these projects make use of integral black pigments. Read more about using integral pigments to color fresh concrete, including buying tips and pointers for achieving the best results.