If there’s one thing this decade brought to light, it’s a lens into our personal lives — and that includes the state of our homes. As a kid, you used to only be able to show off your ~super cute and trendy~ Lizzie McGuire inspired room during after-school hangouts and slumber parties. But now every insta story, snapchat or selfie can contain hints of your home decorating style.
Trends in and of themselves are a bit tricky when it comes to home decor. Sure, buying a velvet jacket to go with your NYE ensemble is tres chic, but you can get some SERIOUS over-analysis-paralysis when trying to pro-and-con a velvet couch. Both are in, both are indicators that you’ve got a grasp on the new “it” thing, but committing to a home decor trend is WAY bigger financial investment.
But here’s the best news — with the transparency of people’s style comes the fluidity of “style rules.” Now that anyone can hit “publish,” a lot of ideas, styles, and trends are emerging in a way that’s a lot less rigid.
Your trends can be inspired by nature! A history book! A Magazine! Your Great Aunt Merial’s Memphis home! The new Architectural Digest feature home!
So in this new decade, it’s less about saying “out with the old and in with the new” and more about watching what people are adding a little more of, and a little less of something else.
1. Less Catalog, More Storied
Ever since Ross Geller and Rachel Green came home with the same apothecary table, the glamor of buying a full set from a catalog really lost its luster. Brand new is fun and shiny, but there’s so much more fun in the hunt of tracking down the ~perfect~ piece from an antique fair with your mom. What’s cool about this trend is the emphasis on the process and time spent on the project rather than the ability to drop oodles of money to replicate exactly what you’re seeing.
2. Less White, More Color
Kitchens especially are seeing a huge surge of color. Don’t feel trapped by only using white. That’s not to say white is leaving. A classic white kitchen will never truly go away, it’s timeless. But people are opting to go big-time bold and add in some of their own color flair to projects.
3. Less Gray, More Cream
The gray color movement came about to be a stark opposition of the O.G. “good for resale tan” color. Because that tan/brown/putrid color skewed most things to look and feel dirty yellow, the next wave was to go so gray that everything almost felt cool and blue. The happy medium is now found in a cream color that brings warmth AND a neutral base.
4. Less Absolute, More Personalization
How many times do you remember hearing you shouldn’t mix metals? Now, how many times do you see that, in fact, you can mix metals and it looks pretty darn good? The thing about the old rules is that you should know them so you can break them intentionally and for impact and to make a space uniquely yours.
5. Less Sleek, More Texture
Shiny surfaces used to be the standard, but the need to include texture is becoming more and more important. The key here is to not lean exclusively towards just one or the other, but have elements of both sleek and texturized to give your whole space some balance.
6. Less Pink Neutral, More Colorful Neutrals
Millennial pink has a special place in our hearts, but we have room in our hearts to recognize that the softest lavender and palest blue can also dub as the “neutral” in a room. In this case, what’s considered neutral is where your eye is allowed to rest when taking in the whole scene.
7. A Lot Less Forced, a Lot More Accepted
One of our favorite things we’re seeing emerge is the idea of embracing the home’s natural character and style, and using it to influence the rest of your design choices. If you’ve got a classic mid-mod home, it’s really hard to make it feel French Provential. Taking cues from your location, your home’s natural style and history makes your space feel much more cohesive.
8. Less Horizontal, More Vertical
Don’t get us wrong, shiplap will always have a place in our home — but vertical lines are really coming in strong. We’re talking paneling, trim and wallpaper. Not everyone is #blessed with 10ft ceilings, but almost everyone wants to make their ceilings look taller, and one of the best ways to do that is by adding the optical illusion of long, tall lines.
9. Less Subway Tile, More Variety
Subway tile will never go away — good gracious it’s a classic. But we’re seeing people opt for more bold tile choices in their kitchen recently and honestly we kind of love it.
10. Less Emphasis on Cabinetry, More Emphasis on Styled Accessories
Open shelving has really changed the kitchen game. The quickest way to a refresh kitchen used to be re-painting the cabinets. But now you not only can re-paint them, but you can even rip those suckers out! And by doing that, you also shine a spotlight on other elements of the kitchen like the stove, your mixing bowls, cooking accessories and copper pans. The ripple effect now makes you pay attention to your kitchen tools to make sure they’re “pretty” enough to be displayed.
11. Less Desert, More Bahamas Meets a British Garden
The desert trend has had a STRONG influence on the past decade, and it’s run is for sure not over. But a new locationally based inspiration is making its way into our trend list and it’s fairly hard to describe so if you have a word for us, please slide it right through to our instagram DM’s because we need to know. Tight floral patterns with pastel colors featuring a heaping of woven elements is emerging and we can only describe it as Britain influenced Bahamas. It’s a completely elegant, a little boho and totally chic.
12. A Little Less Mid-Mod, A Little More #Grandmillenial
Mid-mod isn’t going away, but for a while it seemed like it was the only trendy choice. A new, completely opposite style is emerging and people are calling it #grandmillenial and we are HERE for it. Think embroidery, chinoiserie, English armed sofas and having a set of “nice china.”
13. Less Shiny, More Matte
So you go to pick paint and you think you’re done with the hard choices after FINALLY getting the right shade of white nailed down (hint, Dove White is a crowd-pleaser) ….and then you get to the sheen. High-gloss got some momentum there in the early 2010s for its cleanability in kitchens, but now we’re seeing a much less shiny option on cabinetry, and we have to say it makes our eyes much happier.
14. Less Perfect, More Wabi-Sabi
The idea of Wabi-Sabi was brought back to life in one of the recent Magnolia Journal issues, and it’s the idea of FULLY embracing imperfections and prioritizing them over a perfect form. We’re seeing this mantra embraced with transparency across our feeds and it’s good for the soul, honestly.
15. Less Hiding, More Highlighting
If our top-liked posts of 2019 indicates anything, it’s a love for a good laundry room. Utilitarian rooms like mudrooms, pantries and laundry rooms used to be fairly forgotten. They stored things and did their purpose, but that was about it. Now, however, they produce some of the MOST enviable (and liked) photos on instagram! We’ve moved past hiding these spaces and on to turning them into a highlight of our overall home style.
16. Less Museum, More Function
The perfect, most beautiful, most elegantly decorated house is all fine and dandy — but if there are too many things “off-limits” to touch than it’s a house, not a home. It used to be thought of as an either/or situation, but this decade is bringing new ways and technologies that allow you to make things equally pretty as they are functional. If you need proof, you can now purchase machine-washable rugs, my friends.
17. Less Defined Style, More Mixing Styles
There are so many different styles to adhere to. Are you Boho? Farmhouse? Coastal? Traditional? There are sections of stores devoted to denoting these types of styles, but now more than ever we’re seeing so many styles blend while STILL looking unified. It’s breaking down strict design parameters and opening up experimental combinations and the results are gorgeous.
18. Less Safe, More Bold
“Think about resale value” — a dwindling restriction. You.Do.You.
19. Less Polished Wood, More Natural Wood
Do you remember those dark brown cabinets of the 2012’s? Kind of tried to look like wood, but didn’t really look like wood. Now don’t think of those again. While they served their time well in creating a “regal” appeal, they’re now being traded for natural, light-gran REAL wood and less shiny colors.
20. A Little Less Airy, A Little More Moody
Bright white will always be timeless, but the moody tones are seriously making a convincing argument. They’re chic, sophisticated and some might dare say a neutral!
21. A Little Less Cluster, More Impact Pieces
Again, gallery walls aren’t going anywhere. If Hogwarts can have it for hundreds of years surely it will never truly go out of style. But if you’re looking for a change of scenery and a quick way to update a trend, swap out the cluster of photos and opt for one LARGE impactful art-piece. It’s tres chic and leaves a big impact.
At the end of the day, trend or not, if you want the velvet couch — get the velvet couch. Trends can only take the joy of your home so far, and when all is said and done the thing that matters most when it comes to the decor in your home is whether or not YOU like it.
So go hit publish on your newly discovered trends! We want to see them. Tag us along and we’ll continue to share the journey.
1. : Unique Vintage | 10.: Whitney and Co Design | 11. : R: The Style Bungalow, L: Gal Meets Glam | 12. : L: Jenkins Interiors, R: Gal Meets Glam | 13. : Kate Walker Design | 14.. : Amber Interiors | 15.: The Fox Group | 16. : Amy Hansen | 17.: Erica Burns | 18.: Billy Jack Brawner III | 19: Studio McGee | 2. : Heidi Caillier Design | 20. : Jen Ferrandi | 21.: Studio McGee | 3. : Studio McGee | 4.: Beautiful Chaos Home | 5.: Tessa Neustadt | 6. : Erin Francois | 7. : Brooke Wagner Design | 8. : L: Alison Geise, R: Gritand Polish | 9.: Amber Interiors