MY IMPRESSION ABOUT MAJOR SHIFTS IN INTERIOR DESIGN & COLOR

Because of technology and wildly creative people, I am able to attend Interior Design Markets for both the kitchen and bath industry as well as the furnishings and accessory market virtually via 'Zoom'. In fact, as I write this post I am safely sheltering from home, while attending a virtual showroom tour at High Point Market in North Carolina (tour snap shot above from Go Home's Showroom)! THIS IS SO COOL!!! I believe subjecting myself to as much diversity as possible allows me to co-create better with others. I also believe that beauty needs boundaries in order to succeed.  So while I've been bringing you more information this year (to my email subscribers) about new possibilities & ideas in hopes that it will inspire you to be yourself while creating your unique home, realize that sometimes new ideas can feel pretty extreme when they first come out. But, God loves diversity and His opinion about what reflects His glory in our homes is the ultimate opinion. Shift 1: From Minimalism to Maximalism We are entering into a new era of self expression which translates into more uniqueness, more stuff, and more decoration - enter: maximalism. Most of what I see is still over the top - aka: too much energy for me (as displayed in this link to the Decorators Showcase in San Francisco), but if you're a creative, you understand that we create a lot of ugly before it looks good so we’ll continue to see more maximalist spaces develop through trial and error, and just like most art, if we don't give up - eventually it will get better. As you probably guessed, maximalism is the opposite of minimalism. In interior design language that means there is more mass in the form of color, pattern, lines and other architectural details. This change in 'heaviness or decoration' is because people are ready to look different than their neighbors instead of their homes looking cookie cutter or predictable. This also means they're going for spaces that are much more layered, detailed, decorated and expressive. Think about the design styles from the Victorian age or the fluffy hair of the 1980's. Interior design trends seem to go from one end of the spectrum to the other until they find the perfect balance. And here's the great news about this shift - now you have permission to express your unique authenticity and style at home. I call this designing based on truth not trends because when your home reflects what's important to you, you'll love it forever! Recently while shopping at Home Goods, a lady nearby made a remark in frustration about her 'boring all gray home'.  She stated that she didn't understand why her home wasn't supporting her when she followed all the design rules from a famous designer. I told her I hear this all the time, gave her my business card, looked at her photos on her phone, asked her the right questions and then provided a few tips to help her add her own personality to the space. So, I'll tell you the same thing I told her (but realize I don't have my eye on your room & I can't mind read) - if you’re looking to add more interest to make your house a home, I recommend playing with different textures, mixing prints, and introducing bold color little by little. Classic blue and white is a welcome trend over monochromatic gray (see vision board above that I recently designed), as well as wall papered feature walls and don't forget the return of bold, decorative wall and floor tiles in the kitchen and bath. Yes, I'm a big fan! And yes, we will all want to rip them out in 15 years! So consider your options wisely so you'll still love them in the future. In addition to blue, soft neutrals are also trending big right now. Sage green is showing up and making us all feel refreshed, as reflected in the mood board below: Shift 2: From Cool Colors to Warm - aka: Brown in Back! You heard it hear first folks! But this is not the same brown of 20 years ago and it's not called 'brown' (just like pink isn't called pink - lol). These are warm earth toned, muted colors rooted in nature and are called copper. sienna, clay and terracotta (with a orange base), tobacco or wheat (with a muddy yellow base) & beige or bone (think creamy white). Home interiors are shifting away from stark and cool neutrals to embrace a warmer feel. This shift started slowly before the pandemic but is escalating quickly because Scientist have confirmed the impact color has on our mood (which gives us permission to use it) and color is an easy & inexpensive way to transform your home into a relaxing oasis away from the chaos of the outside world. More and more clients are asking for help creating 'comforting' spaces within their homes since so much more time is being spent there. So color trends are leaning more towards warmer tones in everything from wall colors, tiles, and counter tops to fabrics and metals. These colors mixed with soft textures, create an oasis everyone will want to spend time in. Regardless of whether your space is grounded in a cool or warm foundational neutral, I believe that hues that read pure and relate to the fixed design elements, are always considered good design and classic style. If you are hesitant to introduce color, or fear you will detract buyers in the near future, don’t be! These soft neutralized tones provide a welcoming, palatable feel to a space now and into the foreseeable future. I continue to see a gradual transition from greys being the foundational neutral color to anchor a room to warmer stone colors and I love it! And it is a better option here in Northern Indiana where we're under the Lake Michigan Perma-Cloud (gray/blue light) for six months a year! ;) And here's a mood board project and room render for another recent project based on copper, rust and clay: Shift 3: From Sharp and Angular Lines & Shapes to Soft and Organic: Curves have made a comeback and I'm loving this juxtaposition of male and female! First, I saw curves used in sofas and furniture, and now I am seeing an increased theme throughout other design details as well. This is quite the shift from the sharp rectangular, masculine lines and shapes that have been dominating home interiors for the last 15 years. Adding curves back into the mix will inject softness and elegance into any space. The addition of curves is synonymous with adding femininity back into interior design. I mean stop and think about it -  Adam was incomplete without Eve for a reason - perfectly balanced design involves both the pretty and the practical.

My tip for introducing curves: start with less and build from there. Consider a curved mirror, curved chair (see below), wavy but subtle lines in your counter top, curved accent tiles or something as simple as adding art or table top accents with curvy lines and shapes. Or consider adding feminine touches in your fabrics - think velvet and florals. The Mood Board below illustrates a lovely mix of current trends beautifully. Of course, I'm still loving the strong architectural shapes, lines and dark colors of this current modern, architectural look below (how about you?). Shift #4: From Unused Space to Multi Functional Spaces As we have been spending more time sheltering at home, more and more people are realizing now is a good time to make smart intentional choices about how they can make a better use of the space they have. Because of the pandemic, we are making the transition to working and teaching at home, entertaining at home, aging in place and caring for our aging parents at home. Therefore, making spaces more multifunctional will stay on-trend. With "WFH" becoming the norm for so many, I foresee a continued desire to transform every square foot of home into a more powerful reflection of who we are and how we live and what we value —think no space should go to waste! And we're not limiting ourselves to our inside spaces - outdoor rooms, extended gardens and converting sheds into livable spaces are also being considered & given new life as well.

In fact, here at home, we are in the ideation phase of converting my interior design studio into a 'dawdy haus' or garden home that will include an outdoor room for my father. The first phase vision board is below. Today we are feeling more grounded in our values than ever and yearning for a little nostalgia and we’re showing it by being extra-intentional in how we shop and shelter at home. I believe we’re gearing up for what I call - ‘design on purpose'.  Whether you’re wellness-obsessed, need to be nurtured or just want to fill your home with some fresh, positive vibes, in the coming years it’s going to be all about choosing items that are meaningful, thoughtfully designed, and that resonate with our values & what’s important to us. In fact, Benjamin Moore's Color of the Year, Aegean Teal is a reflection of those values! And isn't that what home is all about in the first place? A safe place to come home and be reminded of God's goodness and grace at every turn and to nurture, encourage, teach and connect with those God has given to us to care for. And how would this stewardship of home affect the world? Comfort and simplicity are always in style - in fact I call this timeless design - but discovering & developing your idea of what this looks like in your home isn't intuitive - it's science, focus and skill - kinda like making yeast bread. The ingredients are simple and essential but perfection comes in the process. So, if you're overwhelmed with information & possibilities and unclear about what to do next, you're in the right place. I'm here to help you cut through the confusion and shed some light on the things that matter most before you embark on your next 'creative' adventure. After all, your home is the most important investment you'll ever make and it affects well just about everything. And unlike homemade bread, mistakes can be costly and frustrating without the help of someone who's already been there. I know from experience that trying to figure out personal style, what's important, what goes and what stays can be overwhelming and watching more HGTV doesn't teach you how to design anymore than watching Perry Mason teaches us how to be a lawyer. The above mood & design boards represent just some of the visual style stories I've created and designed this past year to help others focus on what's meaningful to them. I recommend that you design your own before you start your project, by tailoring it to your unique tastes and needs. I believe that beautifully designed unique environments based on purpose & passion that supports & nurtures others should be accessible to all. In fact, participating in the creative process as an act of worship is not only healing but also produces the most extraordinary results. That’s why over the past years, I’ve focused on developing simple and repeatable processes so I can consistently deliver personalized results in a seamless, hassle-free, smarter way. As your designer and advocate, I'm part scientist, part artist and part communicator all aimed at helping you think, prepare and perfect your unique vision of home so you can control your project instead of your project controlling you. In both the renovation and redesign business, this removes the guesswork and buyer's remorse and provides a road map to your happy home. Feeling inspired? We all have a little 'Fixer Upper' in us. But, Interior Design is not easy when you don't know the way or have the time, patience & money to figure it all out alone. And sometimes it's not about the creating, it's about discovering what to create! Ready to jump start your renovation or redesign plans? Just click on the button below to schedule a FREE 15 minute coffee chat & we'll figure out where you're going and how to get there & I'll provide you with a free design checklist or cheat sheet to get you moving in the right direction. Can't wait to hear from you! Until next time, Continued prayers and blessings (Numbers 6: 24-26), Karen p.s. not ready for design but would like to join my newsletter to keep in touch? Click on the design board below and fill out the form at the bottom of my page and I'll send you a copy to get you started.

MY IMPRESSION ABOUT MAJOR SHIFTS IN INTERIOR DESIGN & COLOR