Fresh Winds

Fresh Winds

blog-image A deep purple master bathroom. Copyright: Fiorito Interior Design. Photo: Bernardo Grijalva

The warmer months often inspire homeowners to step out of their comfort zone cocoons and apply new looks and styles to their abodes in the form of fresh furnishings, paint, décor and room reinventions. But that’s not to say that the post-holidays quarter is strictly a time for home improvement hibernation. In fact, many experts recommend at least minor facelifts in a given room with the change of every season—winter included—to stave off a stale appearance.

“It’s important to keep pace with changing design trends in order to have a fresh, current and stylish vibe within your home, and winter is no exception,” says Michelle Meyers, owner/interior designer with Joli G. Interiors and Designs in Carlsbad, California.

The good news is that a winter interior update can be relatively easy and inexpensive to pull off. It can be accomplished by simply changing out some of your accessories and décor, or it can involve a paint-over or swap-out of furniture if you feel more ambitious.

“Winter trends tend to embrace warmth and coziness, as evidenced by a preference often for darker colors and softer textures,” Nicola Croughan, a UK-based interior designer, says.

Here are six design drifts to consider this winter:

1. Focus on timely fabrics and patterns. “During the colder months, fabrics such as tweed, wool, velvet and corduroy make an appearance on pillows, blankets, and upholstered items. And patterns like plaids and hound’s tooth are more appropriate and appealing,” says Meyers.

2. Spotlight saturated hues. “Use more saturated colors on walls and home finishes. Grey has had its day, and millennial pink is already over. We’re seeing more adventurous hues now being used, like a deep purple on the master bedroom wall,” suggests Jeff Fiorito, owner/designer at Santa Cruz, California-headquartered Fiorito Interior Design.

3. Don’t overlook antique/shabby chic. “This vintage look, which conveys a simple but timeless elegance and a less-is-more neutral soft color palette, is coming back,” notes Anna Gibson, owner of AKG Design Studio in Great Falls, Virginia. This style can be achieved by using distressed woods, washed-out pastels, vintage details like pillow tassels, fluted legs and curly edges, and off-white/beige paint tones.

4. Form an unplugged zone. Being sequestered indoors due to frosty weather doesn’t mean you have to stare at screens all day. “Create a tech-free space where you can escape your cell phone, video games and other technology trappings,” says Beverly Solomon, creative director with Austin, Texas-based Beverly Solomon Design. Equip this area with as few plugged-in devices as possible, focusing instead on pampering accoutrement like candles, flowers or plants, a pleasant-smelling essential oil diffuser, framed photos, comfortable seating and natural light.

5. Make it more metallic. “Gold, brass and bronze add a stylish luxe feel and elegance to a room in winter,” Croughan says. “You can incorporate these metallic tones in picture frames, lighting fixtures, or even window treatments that have reflective metallic elements built in—like a metallic pull-down shade.”

6. Flaunt your precious gems. “Gem tones, including emerald green, royal blue and magenta are colors that can make an otherwise bland or dark environment feel bold and cheerful during the dreary cold season,” says Meyers.

To guard against quick obsolescence, choose your winter design elements wisely.

“Incorporate trending pieces with things like rugs, pillows and accents that can be quickly swapped out and paint colors that can be easily changed as the times change,” Meyers recommends. “For things like furnishings and upholstered pieces that can’t be easily updated, be careful to choose fabrics and elements that are neutral and timeless.”

Croughan agrees.

“It’s easy to add in small elements of a new or emerging trends with a throw, rug or cushion, for example,” she says. “But keep in mind that most trends tend to last about 18 months or less, so select items wisely.”

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