When I look back at the last decade, I can’t help but see how much the art of interior design has changed and evolved.  At the beginning of 2010, we were still designing with ideas such as chocolate walls, natural stone tiles, granite countertops, faux wall finishes, and anything but wallpaper.  Damask patterns and faux silk window treatments were a thing.  Furniture was mostly oversized in feel and frieze carpet was everywhere.  Lighting fixtures were okay but for sure nothing to get excited about.

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Then about mid-way through the decade something changed….

The economy was back and with that so was the housing and design industry.  It was like we were coming out of a long, dark coma.  Home sales were on the rise and shows like Fixer Upper and Property Brothers came on the scene with fresh ideas that were not only bright and simple, their designs were something that the general public identify with.  Not only that, their ideas were affordable.  They made designers relatable.  They made design attainable.

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We went from faux finishes to ship lap.  Natural stone tiles to white subway tile. Chocolate colored walls to white walls incorporated with 50 shades of gray.  Dark, heavy looking granite countertops were replaced with white marble quartz counters.  Carpet was replaced with hard surfaces such as wood, wood looking tiles and luxury vinyl planks. Traditional framed artwork was being replaced phrases such as “Gather” and “Blessed”.    Add to that kitchens with white base cabinets and shelving above, industrial fixtures, Edison bulb lights and chalk painted furniture.  At the end of this decade we also have had fun with different metals in lighting, furniture and hardware.  Who would’ve thought brushed gold would have made an appearance?

So, what does this mean for the decade to come?

My prediction is this… harmony with nature.  There is going to be a greater interest in biophilia- the relationship between people and nature.  Natural organic materials- such as wood floors, stone, and plant life will be a driving force for interior design.  Also, the need for daylight, especially in our area, will be huge in planning how we design spaces.

For living rooms, I think we are going to see consumers wanting a more customized look that feels unique to them.  Functionality and comfort will be the underlying current that drives the design.  Natural textures such as rattan, jute, and cane will be making their appearance to add texture and sustainability to the space.  According to some expert’s, interior design is going to become more widely bespoke (something made from scratch to your specifications), self-expressive, detailed and personal.  Color and pattern will be making a resurgence (thank goodness!!!) along with draperies and fringe. Hard surfaces in flooring will still be strong, but the layering of area rugs will not only add texture and warmth, it will also add definition to our open spaces.

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Say goodbye to the farmhouse kitchen and say hello to the more modernized design.  Think clean lines and wood finishes.  The new look will gravitate to more functional, “less is more” approach to design.  People will realize that dusting their dinner plates is a hassle and upper cabinets will return.  White subway tiles will give way to more natural finishes such as terra cotta.  But don’t worry, this isn’t the terra cotta of the early 2000’s.  It’s taking terra cotta to a whole new level by the way it is used.  And don’t worry, white cabinetry will still be in style.  I think it always will be.  It’s timeless.  But for sure stained cabinetry and the use of other colors on cabinets and walls will be a reprieve from the stark kitchens of the last decade. White walls will give way to tranquil wall colors such as deep blues, muddy greens and blush tones while lighting will introduce metals, glass and personality to the space.  There will also be a huge surge in technology with smart ovens, refrigerators and dishwashers.

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As an interior designer, I am ready for the change.  In a climate where we see the sun on average 177 days per year, I am ready to add some color to our walls and to our world.  I love nature and have always tried to implement it into my designs.  While this next decade has its uncertainties, I think it’s going to be something spectacular.

Happy New Year!!!