What Are The Hot Home Styles Coming Your Way in 2023?
Local designers weigh on everything from colors, to new traditions to how to give life to unused space.
Ah, the pandemic.
Nearly three years after the coronavirus drove everyone indoors, the home trends that defined that period, such as nature-inspired interiors and earthy hues, continue to go strong for 2023.
And as we emerge into an aftermath that is less than ideal (hello rising inflation and global uncertainty), design experts say this year’s trends reflect a cautious optimism alongside an ongoing desire to seek refuge within one’s own four walls.
“The idea of a sanctuary is still strong, but in a more personalized way,” says designer Juliane Mazzarella, owner of Avenue Interiors in Sewickley. “I would say there’s an overall trend of personal touches, a bit of whimsy — and luxury.”
With many companies allowing employees to work out of the office post-pandemic, Pittsburgh-based interior designer Amanda Bock says permanent workspaces also remain trending for homes.
“I think we’re going to see some of the same pandemic trends continue where people are really defining their spaces more,” she says. “With my clients, I see a lot more thought and intentionality going into how they want to use each room in their house.”
Other design trends to look for in 2023 are organic materials, curved furniture shapes, rich paint colors and darker-tone woods. Here’s a closer look at what local design experts have to say about the trends you’ll be seeing in the new year.
Color Is Back
Fresh off a trip to North Carolina for the biannual, influential furnishings trade show known as the High Point Market, Pittsburgh-based interior designer Seashal Belldina says warmer color palettes made up of desert tones and Moroccan spices (such as merlot, red, deep orange and turmeric) are trending.
On the cooler side, blush pink, teal, mint green, blue-greens and jewel tones were also prevalent at the show. Designer Jennifer Janeway of Pittsburgh-based Jennifer Janeway Designs calls the bolder color palettes a nod to the positive outlook that’s emerging after several years of upheaval.
“For so many years, gray and white has reigned supreme — that is, until now,” she says. “We’re seeing trending colors get much warmer and more bold. Color is coming back into our lives; think of the overwhelming flush of green hues so popular last year.”
That doesn’t mean you should go out today and paint your walls red. Instead, Belldina, owner of Interiors by Seashal, recommends adding bolder tones through accessories, such as a rug with a pop of warm colors or a chair outfitted in a muted red velvet.
“Mixing your neutral spaces with pops of these colors is an easy way to incorporate these color trends into your home,” she says.
Another one of her favorite combinations is pairing teal with blush pink, while Janeway adds that dark, moody hues (such as the almost-black Forged Steel by Sherwin-Williams) are a great way to add dimension to your home.
“It can also help to define a space, like a dining room, as a separate and distinct part of the home,” she says.
Interior design trends often mirror what’s happening in the fashion world, and just like the recent resurgence of flared pants, home styles from the 1970s are back, according to Belldina.
“Organic natural materials, curved sculptural shapes, burl wood, rattan/woven materials, velvet, mixed metals and Art Deco influences were seen throughout the market,” she says.
Large-scale lighting and clustered pendants are also on trend for 2023, Belldina says. And while materials such as rattan were found in everything from furniture to lighting at High Point, Belldina cautions against overusing it in the home.
“Too much of a good thing isn’t always good,” she says. “So maybe have a rattan head chair at the dining table with a coordinating natural-looking light.”
Regarding rugs, Belldina says watercolor-influenced prints and geometric shapes were seen throughout the market. Mazzarella, another fall High Point Market attendee, also noted a shift from organic shapes to more cubes, pyramids, spheres and cylinders.
“You could still see an Art Deco influence to a lot of patterns,” she says. “Block printing was still very strong in fabrics. You are seeing some 1980s’ themes popping up as well.”
The New Tradition
And because fashion is nothing if not unpredictable, Mazzarella also notes a resurgence at High Point of traditional details and patterns, such as stripes, damasks, silks and plaids.
Contrasting welt on upholstery (which Mazzarella calls an inexpensive way to add detail to custom furniture) was another big trend.
“It was in really great combinations, like leather with suede piping, solid fabrics highlighted by a small pattern, high contrast like black and white and the classic execution of using a solid color to highlight a color in a patterned fabric,” she says.
Furniture with dressmaker details such as buttons, tabs and exposed wood, on both case goods and upholstery, were also seen throughout the market, Belldina says. Another emerging trend is furniture with wood incorporated into it, such as on the arm of a sofa or the back of a chair.
“Wood finishes are going darker and more refined,” Mazzarella says. “I’m seeing less rustic and primitive. Carving, reeded panels, details, inlays, exotic woods — it’s all about showing off the craftsmanship.”
Say Hello to Darker Wood Tones
Speaking of wood, after years of lighter tones dominating the market, Belldina, like Mazzarella, noticed a return to darker furniture stains. This includes wood accents on sofas and chairs.
“In past markets, we’ve seen a lot of white oak and whitewashed and gray tones in furniture,” Belldina says. “This time, in almost all the showrooms, we saw dark stain was back again, probably because it pairs so well with those desert tones and Moroccan spices.”
Giving Life to an Unused Space
As Bock notes, home offices continue to trend into 2023. With more people working away from the office, Janeway suggests turning underutilized spaces in the home into a flexible workspace.
“By adding floating shelves and a desk to an unused corner in a room, you’ll gain an instant productivity zone,” she says.
Her other suggestions include bringing in integrated task lighting to create a bright work area as well as adding decorative storage boxes, bins and folders as an attractive way to keep things organized.
“A fun pop of floral wallpaper and a touch of whimsical décor can turn a ho-hum workspace into your favorite place for weekday conference calls and answering emails,” she adds.