As we emerge from the dark winter months and begin to enjoy longer daylight hours, the seasonal shift often sheds new light on our living spaces, revealing areas in need of a refresh.
Design trends often reflect what is happening in the world around us and the ways we interact with others and our environment. These shifts translate into how we live in and use our homes, informing our purchasing and décor choices. In the proudly nonconformist culture of Portland, décor is ultimately defined by personal taste and a celebration of originality. Yet trends can provide a glimpse into what is happening in the larger social sphere of our communities and even the world and serve as an inspiring palette…
Minimalism is not just an aesthetic: it is a movement that has become a way of life that, when put into practice, naturally extends to a person’s living space as well. It is defined by an intentional reduction in material possessions in the home with the added benefit of decluttering mental space at the same time, ideally creating more freedom to rest and enjoy quality time with loved ones. It gained traction during the pandemic as we all stayed indoors longer and people began to examine their homes more closely, and it doesn’t appear to be fading as a lifestyle or decorating trend anytime soon. Maximalist, on the other hand, is not a rejection of minimalism, but rather a response to the somewhat predictable styles that have come to define minimalism, such as all-white kitchens and generic accent décor. It does not contradict the benefits of simplified living, but comes out of a desire to express ourselves, to stand out and be unique. Maximalist shows up as bold color and accessory choices within a still-uncluttered room, but now a room with a more individual touch that reflects the personality of the homeowner.
According to Barbara Miller, design director for Neil Kelly, the drive to reduce “visual clutter” is as strong as ever. Case in point: the increasing popularity of custom pullout shelves and cabinets designed to conceal appliances and keep countertops clear, in contrast to the familiar sight of appliances parked on kitchen counters. At the same time, vibrant wall colors and accents are making a reappearance in defiance of the neutral and monochromatic color schemes that have dominated decorating palettes in recent years. The movement is more about creating a personal aesthetic through thoughtfully chosen trinkets, fixtures and even decorative wallpaper that reflect an individual’s unique taste. Maximalism “…embraces all things bold and bright, with an emphasis on decoration and personality,” according to interior designer Shanade McAllister-Fisher.
Boston condo owners and Beacon Hill renters are Conscious of Sustainable and Affordable Design
Sustainable design has been gaining momentum for many years in Back Bay and across the country and has been utilized in a variety of home applications, for example choosing appliances for their energy efficiency, rather than just their features alone. Now, rather than choosing a few eco-friendly home upgrades, the shift is to a holistic approach to decorating and design that focuses on natural and renewable materials such as rattan, bamboo and terracotta, which also happen to be more affordable than their synthetic counterparts.
Both high interest rates and inflation have played a role in encouraging consumers to consider more cost-effective decorating techniques, and the shift towardnatural fibers and more locally sourced materials results in sustainable home design that is simultaneously lighter on the wallet and the environment.
Bold is Beautiful
The Pantone Color Institute declared Viva Magenta its 2023 color of the year, a bold pinkish red that defies conventional neutrals and embraces a more daring and colorful way forward. This has influenced more adventurous color choices in home design, from a range of deep reds and pinks to dramatic accent colors like deep indigo blue and emerald green. The whites and grays that have reigned for years as the go-to palette for interior design are now making way for bold statement colors. For example, slick and sophisticated matte black is turning up everywhere, from appliances to fixtures to range hoods, eliminating the question of “chrome or brass” and presenting a new modern alternative. The new neutrals also reflect a departure from cooler white and gray tones and embrace warm earthy hues, like beige, cream and blush as primary colors, which serve as the perfect complement to more vibrant accent colors.
We learned to see and use our homes in new ways during the pandemic, and many of the changes it initiated in our everyday lives have stuck. With many people now working from home, the need to use one space for many purposes is a major consideration, from design and layout to choosing adaptable furnishings that can be reconfigured to suit different needs. The creation of multifunctional spaces arises from the need to use rooms in a variety of ways throughout the day or week. Boston Seaport condo owners may use a room in their home as an office during the day, only for it to transform into a place to relax or entertain in the evening. One simple way to achieve this transition is through lighting – bright overhead lights during the workday which then give way to dimmable fixtures and lamps to create a relaxing ambience in the evening. You can also arrange furniture to designate separate areas for work and downtime, such as a desk and chair in one corner and a comfortable couch in the other. Another way to create a multipurpose room and save space at the same time is to choose dual-purpose furniture, like a desk that can be converted into a dining table or a coffee table with storage. Even adapting the color scheme in different areas of the room to their intended use can help to encourage focus or relaxation. Implementing these ideas can help to achieve a functional, yet versatile space.
If you’re considering popular home design trends in order to prepare your home for the market, we would love to consult with you on the best way to stage your home to attract the ideal buyer.
Eighteen different styles made up the most popular searches in at least one state. The trends include longtime favorites like midcentury modern and modern farmhouse as well as international design, such as Scandinavian, Japanese, and French country styles, Joybird notes in its study.