Design Trends: Decade to Decade

As we wrap up a decade and enter a new one, it’s always enlightening to look at interior design trends from one decade to the next. What trends from 2010 to 2020 will “stick” in the next decade? What design fads from the previous decade are fizzling out? What are emerging design trends that will dominate the current decade? We asked some of our own designers these questions, as well as our design consultant from Builders Design, a Maryland-based firm specializing in the interior design of model homes and clubhouses.

Keepers from the 2010s: Nanci Knoedler, a Traditions of America designer who has helped hundreds of  homeowners design their DreamHome, sees open floor plans featuring Great Rooms as a trend that will endure for years to come. Other “keepers” on her list: bold wallpapers in small, statement spaces such as powder rooms or niches under stairs, a focus on mixed materials such as wood mixed with iron in lighting fixtures, and a focus on outdoor “living rooms” with built-in grills, sitting walls, fire pits, and string lights. Allison Burrington, a long-standing Traditions of America designer, sees a continued focus on well thought-out light fixtures, laundry room and “drop zone” areas with an emphasis on utility and dedicated pet spaces. Also on her list: craft rooms, game rooms, quartz countertops, microfiber fabrics due to their comfort, durability and ease of maintenance, and custom trim work.

Builders Design’s Jessica Steeves concurs with Nanci and Allison, adding to the keeper list things such as reclaimed woods with “character”, the application of shiplap because it adds great texture and depth to interior walls, the farmhouse style, and “fandeliers” (a fan/chandelier combo).

Things in the Rearview Mirror from the 2010s: Certain fads have likely run their course according to trends our designers have observed: wooden signs with inspirational words, tiny glass mosaic backsplashes, and mason jar lighting fixtures. Brushed nickel plumbing fixtures seem to be fading as more timeless finishes like chrome or matte black are becoming popular in kitchens and bathrooms. Accent tile strips in showers have run their course, as well as “gray” everything and even French country! The formal living room has become less popular as Great Rooms are now the focal point of many floorplans.

Where are design trends going as we head into the next decade? The home office has already become an important room in the home due to pandemic-related work from home trends and will continue to be a focus. Along the same lines, small in-home gyms and fitness spaces are likely to be popular, as well as a connected home with easier and faster access to online learning, video activities, group fitness, crafting lessons, cooking tutorials, and more. Earthy color tones will be emphasized, paired with deep colors. Brass is a metal that is making a big comeback, as well as mixing antiques with modern furniture. Natural fibers will continue to be featured in the next decade with a focus on rattan and wicker. Painted cabinets (besides white) are in demand and GREEN will be a favorite color. Our Hancock model at Traditions of America at Green Pond is a wonderful example of incorporating warm green in the kitchen – a natural inspiration to healthy cooking!