Lived-in looks, mixed materials, bespoke bathrooms, and a more mindful way of integrating technology—here’s what’s trending in design, accessories, smart technology, and amenities for the home.
Homes are feeling homier, and a relaxed, multidimensional look is taking hold.
“Furnishing will be less about one style, such as Scandinavian modernism or industrial chic, and more of an accumulation of looks based on individuality, need, purpose, and functionality,” says Jeffrey Beers of Jeffrey Beers International in New York.
As a reflection of this, Mr. Beers designed the signature lobby and amenity spaces at EchelonSeaport in Boston to be warm and inviting for residents by using unexpected textures, such as linen-inspired wall coverings, Grigio Perla marble flooring, and champagne-hued woven metal detailing.
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It’s a vibe that’s also being expressed through furnishings. “In sitting rooms and family rooms, we are increasingly incorporating large, oversize ottomans to replace the traditional coffee table,” says Carleton Varney, president of Dorothy Draper & Co. in Palm Beach, Florida.
For Adam Meshberg, founder and principal of Meshberg Group, an architecture and interior design firm in Brooklyn, New York, it means blending industrial-chic design with vintage pieces. “We’ll see more open ceilings revealing black steel finishes, light-toned wide-plank flooring, and textured or wire-glass materials paired with vintage furniture elements, such as cane chairs similar to Marcel Breuer’s design pieces.” 2
Accents that mix and match materials and styles are giving spaces more of an individual touch. Jane Landino, creative and design head of studio for Taylor Howes Designs in London, is embracing variety by juxtaposing vintage finds with contemporary pieces. This way, “various materials can sit harmoniously together rather than painstakingly matching every piece to ensure the same metal and tone is used,” she says. For example, Ms. Landino purchased antique carved jade spearheads and placed them against modern, brightly colored glass sculptures on shelving in a study.
“Some of the best, timeless designs incorporate antique, vintage, and new pieces,” says Allison Babcock of Allison Babcock Design in Sag Harbor, New York. “This tends to have a more collected look rather than a perfectly decorated look that can quickly become dated and feel sterile.”
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While connected homes continue to evolve, there’s more discretion about showing off the technology itself. “There’s been a shift toward finding ways to limit or modify the prevalence of media and technology in both residential and hospitality environments,” says Hans Baldauf, co-founding principal at BCV Architecture + Interiors based in San Francisco and New York. Mr. Baldauf has designed various ways of concealing media displays in tasting rooms by using sliding panels in reclaimed wood.
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Bespoke bathrooms are upping the “wow” factor.
Andrea Perez Hoyos, director of product development at Adriana Hoyos Furnishings in Miami, designed a bathroom to feel like a Roberto Cavalli fashion show, complete with vibrant wallpaper, high-gloss millwork, and retail design-like lighting.
Laura Brophy, principal designer of Newport Beach, California–based Laura Brophy Interiors, recently installed a custom, freestanding concrete bathtub for a client. “I am even seeing bathtubs that play music and have integrated color therapy,” she says.
This story first appeared in Mansion Global magazine, published on March 14th, 2020.