Diane Keaton's stairway color palette masters classic style while simultaneously 'depicting modernism'

The actress curates an expert-approved modern farmhouse aesthetic in one of the most transitional spaces of her home

Diane Keaton
(Image credit: Photo by Amy Sussman/Getty Images)

When considering the color palette for areas around our home, the staircase may be one of the last we think about, but Diane Keaton has made a case for choosing our hues even more carefully. Though this space is seen as transitional, the actress has chosen to not only sit on her staircase – but show it off to the world – and with that decision comes a glimpse of her monochromatic color palette. 

Keaton is seen alongside records from her favorite artists occupying the black-and-white space, creating a simple yet classic juxtaposition that maintains the farmhouse aesthetic seen around her entire property. 

In the past, we've looked around Keaton's living room and kitchen, both of which exhibit the same color scheme. However, though often a forgotten space, her staircase is one of the most powerful examples we've seen of this monochromatic decorating technique. Why? Because it's one of the first spaces guests will see –making it all the more important to make an impact. 

'Using black and white is a bold way to make an immediate impact on those who enter the home,' comments  Karen Miller, the owner of Chicago-based Miller Design Group. 'They are the epitome of classic style, yet these colors can also depict modernism when paired appropriately.' According to Miller, a monochromic color scheme takes its power from the timeless style of contrasting hues that are versatile enough to work in every kind of home. 

'The black color conveys power and sophistication, whereas the white maintains a sense of freshness and cleanliness. This concept applies to any style of home, whether it be minimalistic, traditional, or eclectic, and continues to be a popular choice due to its versatility.'

black bench and stairs with blue artwork

A monochromatic entryway and staircase similar to Keaton's. 

(Image credit: Angela Newton Roy)

The timelessness and versatility of this color combination make it an ever-popular choice, but as Miller explains, we can also owe its sucsess to its ease of application. Painting our walls, stairs, or stair rail can be completed in a day, but the finish is transformative. 

'One product I often recommend is the 'Fusion Mineral Paint' in shades of black and white. I have found their paint to be of high quality, with excellent coverage and durability,' Miller says.

'Going beyond just painting walls, you can also use it [in the wider entryway] for painting doors, trims, and furniture. For example, a black console table against a white wall or a white frame mirror hung on a black wall is visually appealing.'

Interior Designer
Karen Miller
Interior Designer
Karen Miller

Karen Miller is the owner of Miller Design Group, based in Chicago. In the past, she has worked with a large Illinois residential developer assisting clients in selecting floor plans and design finishes, consulted on home building designs, and advised clients on creating rooms that reflect their style.

For more paint recommendations, we love Backdrop's black and white hues. We can pick up samples below. 

Megan Slack
Head of Celebrity Style News

Megan is the Head of Celebrity Style News at Homes & Gardens. She first joined Future Plc as a News Writer across their interiors titles, including Livingetc and Real Homes, before becoming H&G's News Editor in April 2022. She now leads the Celebrity/ News team. Before joining Future, Megan worked as a News Explainer at The Telegraph, following her MA in International Journalism at the University of Leeds. During her BA in English Literature and Creative Writing, she gained writing experience in the US while studying in New York. Megan also focused on travel writing during her time living in Paris, where she produced content for a French travel site. She currently lives in London with her antique typewriter and an expansive collection of houseplants.