Nature’s Influence Brings Trends in Color, Materials and Patterns to Today’s Home Decor
As we begin 2022, it’s time to fling open the doors and let the outdoors in. In fact, nature is influencing today’s home decor in a big way. Perhaps it’s because so many of us spent the last two years stuck in our homes, or maybe it’s a desire for calmness in our lives, or perhaps it’s just a natural swing back from the all-white neutral look of the past. Either way, nature’s hues, as well as some richer tones, are making their way into our decorating. This year, most top colors chosen by major paint companies are variations of green. From soft, almost airy hues to those with a bit more depth and spice to them, these colors definitely help bring nature’s sense of calmness to our rooms.
On the lighter end, Behr brings us Breezeway, which the company describes as a “relaxed and uplifting sea-glass green expressing peace and tranquility.” Breezeway is indeed a peaceful color, and one that should be easy to incorporate into your homes. Benjamin Moore offers a similar shade that’s light and relaxing—October Mist. The company describes the color as “a gently shaded sage that anchors and uplifts.” Whereas Breezeway tends toward a blue hint, October Mist has a touch of gray in it.
Glidden’s color of the year is Guacamole, a more vibrant green that Glidden says is “spirited yet soothing” and “brings an organic energy to any space.” This is a brighter green; one that will make more of a statement on your walls but still provide a sense of peace. Moving into a darker hue is Sherwin-Williams’ Evergreen Fog, a mix of green meets gray with just a touch of blue. The company describes it as “simple and sophisticated, yet soothing and subtle.”
Even though green hues will be appearing everyone, that’s not the only popular color chosen for the year. Nature’s blues are making an appearance as well. HGTV Home by Sherwin-Williams chose Aleutian, a washed indigo that feels like a wonderful wave flowing over you, and Krylon is touting its Satin Rolling Surf, a strong blue green that is punchy and optimistic. The color experts Pantone went in a brighter direction and looked to more purple hues for this year’s color, Very Peri. A bursting-with-color periwinkle blue with violet undertone, this is a dynamic and bright color. It’s reflects the joy and happiness of the floral vine that inspired it.
The all-white homes of the past are bringing in more color, and we’re already seeing strong greens coming into play. But expect other colors as well. One hue we saw a lot of at home decor shows was a blush color; expect to see this more on pillows, throws, and even walls.
Nature is influencing home decor trends in other ways as well. We’re seeing an increased interest in wicker and rattan again, especially in furniture, end tables and lighting. The material is earthy and textural. Raw woods, especially on countertops, mantels and beams, are becoming popular in kitchens and other rooms. And we’re seeing more dried grasses and stems used in decorating. If you haven’t heard of pampas grass before, you definitely will this year! And the ultimate in natural influences—living elements themselves—are all over today’s decorating. Expect to see plants winding up walls, decorating shelves and filling corners. Succulents had their moment, and although still popular, you’re going to see more ivy, olive trees, palms and other big leafy arrangements. It’s that Scandinavian influence coming into play.
As we move away from neutrals, more patterns and textures are taking hold. The once ubiquitous white shiplap walls in farmhouse-style homes across the country are making way for more color and pattern, especially in board-and-batten paneling and wallpaper. Yes, I said wallpaper. Its day has come again. Today’s wallpaper is so much easier to use than the sticky mess of decades ago. And the patterns are simply lovely! We’re seeing a lot of floral prints in soft hues, somewhat reflective of the old wallpapers from the 1940s. In fact, this desire to incorporate the well-loved pieces and elements from our grandparents’ days is a trend in itself.
Called Grandmillenial, it’s a turn away from the sterile impersonal aesthetic of recent home looks and embraces nostalgia. Ruffled bedding, tea sets, antiques, vintage florals—they all combine into a look the young generation is embracing (of course we knew about its joy all along!). Sharing space with this trend is the Cottagecore look, a love of the sweet nature themes: woodland animals, mushrooms, daisies, flouncy aprons, etc.
As I said, we’re seeing pattern on the walls with paneling as well, especially board-and-batten. Many homeowners are swapping out their shiplap for this and painting it in a decidedly bold hue. It’s an accent wall for sure.
Other trends in pattern include herringbone tile and flooring, intricately patterned colorful square tiles, and organic ethnic-looking patterns in rugs and pillows. On kitchen cabinets, the simple shaker look has taken hold, especially when accented with bar-style pulls. Also in the kitchen, the accented stove cover is a strong focal point, and for dining, the table of choice is now a nice round one. And we’re starting to see wood countertops coming back into fashion.
In general, furniture pieces are seeing more curves, but a couple trends really stand out in the farmhouse style. Structured cushions with a boxed look will be favored for dining chairs, benches and outdoor furnishings. Indoors, one trend that has people either loving it or hating it is the move toward deconstructed furniture. What is that, you say? Imagine an old couch with half the upholstery missing, some stuffing showing and other parts redone in a different fabric. DIYers are creating their own deconstructed furniture, but some manufacturers are doing this on a mass-market scale, where framework or padding might show through a newly constructed piece.
It’s always interesting to see what trends are coming into play in home decor, but one tenet interior decorators abide by: you must love what you live with. Just because something is trending, doesn’t mean you have to redo your whole room to accommodate it. It’s good to be aware of the trends, but overall, you do you. So maybe deconstructed furniture isn’t for you, or rattan end tables make you cringe, but you swoon over a beautiful floral-print wallpaper. Go for it! Make your home exactly that—your home.