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Eighteen Decorating Trends to Inspire Your 2017 Makeover

With a new year comes new resolutions, new opportunities, new time—and, for many of us, new ideas and resources to spruce up our homes. There are few more concrete ways to welcome a new year than redesigning a room or an entire house with the trends and ideas that are primed to become big hits.

Oftentimes, the new overlaps with the old, in carrying over favorites from the past year (or even earlier) while offering new twists on both them and completely unique alternatives. The gift of human creativity coupled with technological advances and the ubiquity of social media have unveiled a near-endless palette of opportunities with which to create your dream home. This post will give you ideas to work with and trends to watch as you celebrate 2017.

Navy blue interiors

New and different colors are making their presence felt in 2017, and one of the biggest ones is navy blue. The forceful but inviting statement made by this shade is becoming very popular. Moreover, it’s especially easy to incorporate as a centerpiece, in throw pillows or other accents, or, as a contrasting wall color.

Stained glass

Stained glass is an ancient and beautiful art, full of tradition, creativity, and majesty. What was once relegated to churches and wealthy universities became more residential in the 1900s, with houses incorporating stained glass accents in windows and doors. But now, things have gone a step farther. 2017 may be the year of adding stained glass accents to homes as wall-hangings and sun catchers, whether intricate pieces like these or repurposed (even partially broken) windows from abandoned buildings.

The farmhouse look

Lots of people like the look of farmhouses (just not all the work involved in running a farm!) The coziness and warmth of a farmhouse is something a lot of people want to adopt, and 2017 may be the year more people incorporate these kinds of emphases into their homes.

Green

2017 is the year of green (and not just the environmental kind). Like with the navy furniture mentioned above, adding color accents is easy. Color is versatile, so it can be introduced in everything from rugs to lampshades to wall paint. And shades don’t matter—lime, hunter, emerald, pear—all are welcome in the green revolution.

Mixed patterns

This was once a no-no in dress, but that’s changing. And it’s changing in home décor, too. Pattern-lovers can come out of the closet and even get crazy if they like. While mixed patterns must be used wisely (as clashing and garishness are still possibilities), careful use can add a colorful and fun element to any room while providing a grounding, centralizing feel.

Muted colors

Navy blue? Bright greens? Mixed patterns? Do these all seem to clash with your more reserved, placid personality? Fear not! Muted tones are just as in this year. Off-whites, beiges, camel, pastel greys, and other neutral colors are making a comeback. You can incorporate them easily through pillows, throws, lampshades, and rugs.

Texture

This is an easy and fun way to be cutting-edge. The versatility here is almost endless (brushed brass, leather finishes and accents, reclaimed wood—but also mixing fabrics), and if done tastefully it can communicate a wise and discerning eye with refined taste. You might try mixing a knit throw with a leather sofa, or a repurposed wood table with a porcelain vase, and go from there.

Marble wallpaper

Marble was extremely popular last spring. This wasn’t just in the highly traditional countertops and floors arena, either. People who didn’t have the money to invest in expansive marble surfaces (or who didn’t like the overwhelmingly ornate look of them) found ways to add marble through lampstands, trays, coasters, and even wrapping paper and phone cases. Today, that trend is continuing with marble wallpaper (did you ever think wallpaper would be back in style?) As with other things, the most expansive and creative outlets to find this are online. Even Etsy is getting in on it.

Gallery walls

Gallery walls—taking up an entire section of a wall or an entire wall with a series of pieces, whether pictures, paintings or other accents—were a hot trend in 2016, and that will only continue. Now, it’s especially common to take a cue from the “mixed patterns” playbook and find different but complementary frames, art pieces, or other accents and place them on one wall. This can tie a whole room together and act as a most appealing statement piece.

Hygge

This is a Danish cultural concept with no direct English translation, but which carries the idea of finding contentment and pleasure in soothing or comforting activities and things. It became so popular in the United States and the UK in 2016 that an authority no less than the New Yorker called last year “the year of hygge.” We still have several months left of winter, and some say there is no better time to enjoy hygge than the winter months. Stock up on cable-knit everything, good teas, cozy slippers, and start a fire in your fireplace. Not only will you be on trend, but you’ll be happier too.

Reclaimed wood

Besides being a nifty way to recycle, reclaimed wood has a character and a beauty not found in other accents (or even other woods). Nowadays, you can even buy it at Home Depot and use it however you like. Most frequently, reclaimed wood is used on floors and as paneling on walls and even fireplaces.

Artisanal pieces

Rather than large impersonal factories that specialize in particleboard and overpriced pieces that one needs a doctorate to assemble, 2017 seems to be all about smaller retailers with a passion for well-made, thoughtful pieces. Frequently this means hunting for used or vintage pieces curated by people with a good eye. Or, it means handmade glass and flatware, or art pieces.

Gray

Gray is another solid color that was popular in 2016 that will continue unchallenged this year. A cool, but inviting color, it can be used as a contrast to other colors or as an entire anchoring theme. Gray and white pair well together, and monochromatic tones (by incorporating different shades) can be a nice touch. Like a good wine, grey goes well with all kinds of colors, allowing for a versatile and easily-manipulated palette.

Copper

Good copper pieces can add a refined, traditional touch to any room. This can be in the form of picture frames, lamps, furniture, even pillows and wall hangings. One excellent way to do this is by incorporating copper into the kinds of things you already have. Do you like plants? Get a copper planter. Are you a candle aficionado? Then buy candles in copper holders (or lanterns like the one in the picture). If you’re into hosting guests, buy copper cups or a pitcher for a serving tray (or buy a copper tray, or a bar cart with copper finishes).

Wood tile

This may shape up to be a big hit in 2017. It frequently has the look of distressed or reclaimed wood but with the durability and longevity of actual tile. The nice thing is that, at least as far as looks go, wood tile is very hard to distinguish from actual wood when it is installed, so you can have the beauty of a hardwood floor (or shower, or fireplace, or…) with the ease of care that is characteristic of porcelain tile. Many different styles and stains of wood are represented., so finding the perfect one to fit (or nicely contrast with) your décor will not be a problem.

Heated floors

Heated floors? Yes! This will be most appreciated, of course, by those of us who live in frequently wintry and cold climates. Think of walking into your kitchen or bathroom on a still-dark morning and not being frostbitten by ice-cold tile! (You can even combine this with the wood tile from above and be even more cutting-edge!) There are two different ways to install heating in your floors. One is a hydronic system that distributes heated water through a complex network of tubing; the other employs a heating element attached to a current. The latter is more-cost effective and simpler to install in one room, so if you are only choosing to remodel a bathroom or kitchen it may be the better choice.

Raw white accents

“Raw white” is a colloquialism used to describe stark shades of white like bone or chalk. Its purity and unspoiltness makes it an attractive component to many rooms (not to mention taking advantage of the old cliché that “everything goes with white”). Many of these pieces, especially sculptures, vases, and boxes, will feature some kind of texture or embossing as an added touch (and to soften the otherwise sterile nature of brilliant whites). You can expect to find many of these pieces handmade by artisans, another nod to 2017 trends.

Geometric shapes

Building off this year’s trend towards patterns, many homes will feature an uptick in geometric designs. Their simplicity and ability to give off a “curated” feel will prove appealing to many decorators. Some designers speculate that an ethnic influx will prevail, with many pieces being inspired by African or Asian themes with a more modern twist. Regardless, the idea is to carefully cultivate simple but distinctive looks incorporating simple shapes, lines, and patterns, as a way of pulling a room together.

Conclusion

As long as there will be humans, there will be culture, and part of culture is beautifying our living spaces. Trends and emphases come and go, and so it is possible that by this time next year there will be eighteen more “next big things.” Thankfully, many of these ideas are classic and have earned their place as staples in any decorating scheme. Try mixing and matching, experiment, toss out the ones you don’t like—and discover the unique look that expresses your taste and your love for home. Happy decorating!