9 of 2019’s Biggest Home Design Trends — And How They’re Changing In 2020
Trends only move but so fast in home decor. You can’t exactly remodel your kitchen or install new flooring multiple times a year. Talk about a lot of time and money, not to mention that fact that it would be super wasteful. That said, looking back on the start of 2019 and now into 2020, things have shifted a bit in home design: Homes are starting to reflect newer materials, finishes, patterns, and colors that, if you are about to redecorate or renovate, might inspire you to try something different in your space.
We thought it would be fun to look at a handful of trends from this year, see how they’re evolving right now, and make some predictions about how we think things might shake out in 2020. Better yet, we’re going to explore each of these trends on its own later in the month, so check back for those more in depth looks. For now, here’s how our houses are looking right now versus what we’re predicting for the new year—and new decade!—in these big furnishings categories.
Gray walls had a good run over the past few years, but paint palettes are starting to warm up again. Beige is back, and it’s not the bland tan you might remember from the early 2000s. This time around, beige is softer and sweeter with pinky undertones that cast a pretty glow on everything they come into contact with.
Greenery isn’t going anywhere, but the tree that captured the hearts of Instagrammers everywhere, the Fiddle-Leaf Fig, is starting to take a backseat to its close cousin, the Ficus Audrey. “The secret is out,” says blogger Chrissy McDonald of Harlowe James about these smaller, lower maintenance trees. “They are the best plants and so much easier to maintain!” That’s music to black thumbs’ ears.
Performance velvet sofas, chairs, and headboards have reigned supreme for a few years now, especially in jewel tones like peacock blue and emerald. But next year, expect boucle to come in hot. Nate Berkus and Jeremiah Brent’s collection for Living Spaces had a boucle sofa in it, as did Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop collab with CB2. Article has boucle too. All of these pieces were only available in shades of ivory, so watch for color to creep in here soon.
In direct opposition to the prevalence of clean Mid-Century lines, curvy furniture came back onto the scene last year and has continued to grow in popularity in 2019. Many major retailers launched sofas, chairs, and headboards with shapely backs and feminine flourishes. But things are about to get even more relaxed. Slouchy silhouettes are starting to blur the lines between curvy and straight, and this hybrid style offers the best of both worlds—not to mention the pieces are wildly comfortable.
Matte cement tiles definitely had a moment in late 2018 and early 2019. But by springtime this past year, sheen was back in full swing. Instead of uniform high gloss subways and squares in bathrooms and on backsplashes, though, zellige finishes, which shimmer but also show huge variation in color and texture between individual tiles and hark back to a 10th century Moroccan craft, have been popping up in homes, hotels, stores, and restaurants. No two tiles created in this fashion are the same, which speaks to the growing desire to have something truly unique in our homes. Expect to continue seeing more tile applications in stack bond configurations too. These kinds of patterns are super graphic and modern, especially when tiles are laid vertically.
Bands of alternating colors seem to always be big in both fashion and interiors. But the stripe of the future isn’t uniform in size or width. Instead, it’s “broken” into smaller strips of color at irregular intervals. The end result is a much more visually dynamic pattern. Look for broken stripes in rugs and textiles like pillow covers.
Who doesn’t want their furnishings to work harder for them? As small spaces continue to trend, we’re demanding that all of our objects do double duty, and mirrors of all types are no exception to this rule. That’s why mirrors are starting to sport built-in shelves. These little perches might not offer tons of storage, but it’s the perfect spot for toiletries, jewelry, or other little knickknacks.
If it feels like all of a sudden your Instagram feed was full of painted blob accent walls, you’re not imagining things. Abstract wall murals make a big impact relative to their time and monetary costs, so everyone seemed to be grabbing a brush and giving it a go. But 2020 just might be the year of the painted arch. When you don’t have architectural charm over windows, a doorway, or even your headboard, you can fake it ‘til you make it with just a quart of paint and a simple semi-circle shape.
Terrazzo reached peak saturation in 2019—it became more than just a material but a pattern in its own right. Watch for colored flecks to become sketchy squiggle shapes in 2020 on things like dinnerware, bedding, wall paper, and textiles. You might even see squiggles as wall sculpture, as in this living room above.