Designers see comfort and tradition as home decor trends

Designers see comfort and tradition as home decor trends

With all the economic, political and world turmoil that seems to surround them, people are looking for comfort and tradition in their own surroundings, making these the leading trends in home decor for spring. Alexandria ASID interior decorators seemed to share that view, and here’s what they had to say:

” … people want comfort fashions.”

Mary Mitchell, Mitchell Designs

“Perhaps because of the economy and political crisis, people want comfort fashions. The styles are becoming much more traditional and familiar. People are going back to what makes them feel comfortable. 

“My clients want traditional fabrics, in softer colors with brighter accents, like cream, pale okra, pale turquoise, soft coral and apple green, paired with touches of gold and silver. I also do a lot with chenille upholstery, chandeliers, crown molding and chair rail and plaster mantels, in place of the newer, sleeker lines.

“I am using color sparingly, with the deeper tones reserved for cushions and other accessories. They are replacing those rich jewel tones we saw several years ago, those ‘Washington colors’ (which are still at home in the authentic 19th century federal dwellings of Old Town). 

“My clients also like faux paintings and murals, which inspired me to start a division of my company using local artists to create ‘walls to go,’ with removable murals and hand painting.”

” … more comfort and less formality.”

Claire Schwab, ASID, Claire Schwab Interior Design

“What I have heard from my clients reinforced the reports that were made at the Architectural Digest Home Show in New York this March.

“I am a very traditional designer, so I am hearing that my clients want traditional furniture that is well made. They are not interested in following the ‘latest and greatest’ trends, and they want more comfort and less formality. There is not much use for the formal living room especially, so many people are turning it into a child’s play area.

“This traditional style is different from the popular Colonial and Federal dcor that we call ‘period.’ The traditional trend is closer to an English country house, with furnishings that feature softer lines, skirts, trim and pillows … neither edgy and modern nor historical and formal. People are at home more, they are working from home and they try to entertain more at  home, so they want to be comfortable there.” 

To make things even more comfortable, she adds that, “Organization is key right now. People are putting money aside to do the closets. In the new homes the closets and mud rooms are part of the design. They are selling points now.” 

“The colors and lighter and brighter.”

Dee Thornton, House Works Interiors

“We are seeing a lot of neutrals moving from beige to grey. The beige is mixed with grey, cream or flowers. The colors are lighter and brighter. Blue is coming back, and we have seen a lot of lavender and lilac, too. We have also seen a lot of embroidery, with luminous gold threads standing out against the pale green, lavender and white. 

“Gold is the symbol of luxury, but grey and blue are calming the palate down, and they are conservative colors anyway (reflecting the prevailing mood). 

“There are a lot of different patterns and textures, for a fresh effect. In this area, the style is traditional, but becoming clearer and cleaner and less cluttered: heavy window treatments are being replaced with lighter ones and even sheer white.

“When we move to fall the colors will get richer. For now, coming out of a hard winter, people want to see leafy green and sunny yellow and other garden colors, like lavender and pink.”