Trends, by definition, ebb and flow, but at the end of each year, we enjoy sharing some of the insider insights we've collected throughout the year. Our color and interior design expert Philippa Radon has taken copious notes during her travels, helping clients in the US and abroad create their dream homes. Here are her predictions on the direction of design for 2023.
"There is a newfound bravery in breaking the mold of your style restrictions and being more adventurous in terms of colour, objects, pattern, and textiles. Design is becoming more mindful, not centered solely around objects, but instead about incorporating a more holistic, immersive experience that caters to our unique living styles."
The Wonderful World of Wood
We will see wood in all its glory, ranging in type and tone. From a modern take on wood paneling to cork flooring, there is an emphasis on the visible wood grain, textures, and combining contrasting tones. Cerused wood furniture ranging from light to dark is gaining in popularity, and unique finishes like Shou Sugi Ban (charred wood often used in Japandi design), typically used for accent pieces, is now a popular choice for interiors and exteriors.
Open plan spacing is still worth mentioning but now refers to airy architectural details like arched openings. Instead of large rectangular or square-shaped rooms, L-spaced or U-shaped spaces can create definition and expansiveness with a more modern feel. Create the feeling of a larger space by using open bookcases, half/pony walls, and changing furniture placement. For example, sofas placed away from walls can create separate seating areas and walkways.
When we say dark cabinets are back, don't be alarmed! Instead of the 80s beveled style, these are sleek and streamlined, with slab doors and notched-out finger pulls in place of hardware. We are seeing wood elements paired with white kitchen cabinets (though a creamy, more natural color is preferred) alongside high-contrast materials. Light wide plank natural wood floors help emphasize dark textured counter materials, and black and white marble with solid contrast is being used instead of tile. Honed or polished hard surfaces with soft or chiseled edge details are inventive ways to make them the hero of the space.
Art Deco/Gatsby-inspired decor is a look that lends itself to luxe comfort like rounded shapes, geometric patterns, marble tables, accent pieces, and color combinations like black and white, peachy sorbet warm tones, and multi-greens. You'll also see brass accents and retro-inspired motifs like birds and repeating circles. Arched openings are replacing traditional square shapes, adding an overall architectural softness. Modern-shaped bedside lighting and shimmery metallic glass will provide a dash of glam, going the opposite direction of the woven or rattan we've seen the past few years.
Barrel & Swivel Chairs
These accent chairs are especially great for open-plan spaces that can be positioned in multiple areas. Look for fun, sculptural shapes, textures and colors, and cut-out details in the back that add a sense of whimsical sophistication and modernity. Also, you'll see bronze-tone metal accents on furniture frames instead of wood.
Bedrooms are becoming true retreats– a relaxing refuge from the outside world. Styles will reflect this direction with softer, more diverse "new neutral" paint colors alongside curvy, sexy shapes for beds, luxe fabrics, and the re-emergence of the four-poster bed. Like all rooms, bedrooms are becoming multi-functional zones equipped with handy gadgets so you can stay in hibernation mode and escape the outside world.
The last few years have provided an opportunity to explore and learn new skills and develop new hobbies. From rediscovering vinyl records to learning to play an instrument, a personal interest in music has seen a renaissance. Creating a music room in the home or adding a music corner to the family room continues the current focus of creating spaces to immerse yourself in your home.
Wallpaper…and More Wallpaper
We saw this trend gain momentum in 2022, and there's no sign of it slowing down. With the considerable introduction of new patterns and colors and increased accessibility to peel-and-stick options, it's an easy weekend project. Use wallpaper as a starting point for a room makeover inspiration; find your ideal paper, an accent paint color, and design around that. And remember: both paint and wallpaper are flexible, so remember the ceilings and get creative!
Often referred to as multi-sensory design, providing comfort and functionality that caters to your senses more of a movement than a trend. It's all about integrating nurturing elements like clean fragrance, mood lighting, mediation areas, sustainable materials, indoor gardening, and overly exaggerated fibers like boucle to make us feel more balanced and calm.
Multi-sensory Home Office
The home office is becoming its own zen sanctuary. To ensure all the creature comforts of home (and to maximum mental well-being), they are being designed to better serve us, with high-functioning technology and creative storage. Because color plays a significant role in our psyche, painting is an easy way to make the space your own. Accent walls, painted bookshelves, wallpaper, and decorative lighting, allow you to express your unique style.
Handcrafted, Artisan & Sustainable
Sustainability is no longer a trend but an ethos in design. Its wide net includes the "second-hand economy" through repurposing furniture and salvaging, focusing on detail, design, and quality. Choosing craftsmanship over short life span pieces has been propelled by the knowledge that specific crafts are dying (i.e., upholsterers, wallpaper installers, custom metal workers, etc.) and need support. So, "buy well, buy once" is the new theme.
"Design for 2023 is all about feeling good, pairing comfort and practicality with self-expression and individuality with a focus on brands that exhibit responsible design."
Self Sustaining Food
With food costs rising, there is a movement toward homegrown food and self-sufficiency. We are seeing a rise in indoor gardening and winter gardens and a spike in canning and food storage! Multi-functional kitchen appliances encourage at-home cooking, honoring meal times as connective opportunities to engage with family and friends.
Last year, we saw an influx of handcrafted artisan items and brands, which will continue as we look to support smaller, independent artists, markets, and businesses. Artisan quality items speak to the expression of our uniqueness and individuality. This includes using a higher quality paint with a full-spectrum formula that reflects the full range of natural light, inviting a glimpse of nature inside.
Your home is where you can truly be yourself...a place to recharge and reignite your spirit. Regardless of any "trend" (which we just consider a fun glimpse inside an ever-changing industry), choose pieces that are personal and that cater to your unique lifestyle.