If you’re one of the millions of people who decorated your entire home in various shades of monochromatic gray over the last few years, prepare yourself – you’re about to enter the dreaded “dated” zone. The fickle tides of the interior design world are turning once again, and as we usher in 2022, we’ll be saying goodbye to all gray everything, open kitchen shelving, gratuitous signage, and industrial aesthetics and welcoming a cozier, earthier, more personalized vibe.
Warm Neutrals and Nature-Inspired Tones
If your home is feeling a little morose, it’s time for a change. Cold neutrals have dominated the interior design world for years now, but many people are yearning for wellness, relaxation, and a connection to nature, leading to a desire for warmer hues. Ranging from pale flaxen beiges to rich, deep blues and greens, colors inspired by nature are about to take over.
A fun way to integrate this into your space is to find a photo of a nature scene you love and pluck your color palette from its elements: the salmon pink of a sky at sunrise, the cerulean of tropical waters, the sun-dappled gold sand, and the leafy green of beach vegetation, for instance. Use it to guide your choices for paint, tile, bedding, throws, and curtains (and please, for the love of god, leave the ubiquitous gray laminate and vinyl plank flooring in the 2010s forever).
If there’s one design style that sums up where things are headed this year, it’s Japandi. This cross between Japanese and Scandinavian modern design puts comfort and functionality on the front burner, but in a way that’s well curated, low-clutter, and timeless. Check out our guide to achieving this vibe.
Prints and Patterns
Image via Martyn Lawrence Bullard from the Shade Store
The push away from minimalism continues. Feel free to express your creativity with wallpaper, but rather than going overboard and plastering every surface, choose accent walls or small areas to make a big visual impact with whatever print or pattern strikes your fancy. Throw pillows, bedding, and curtains offer other opportunities to liven up the room with graphic flair. Wood grain, cork, nubby linen, and other natural textures and patterns bring their own fun quirks to the mix, too.
More Vintage Everything
All the supply chain delays have lead to empty shelves at big-box retailers. That’s especially true for bulky items like furniture, but consumers are getting sick of flimsy stuff that falls apart quickly anyway. The combination of these two factors is raising demand for antique, vintage, and secondhand goods. So don your mask and head to your local thrift stores, antique malls, and flea markets to go treasure hunting. Your home will end up looking uniquely you instead of like an IKEA or Target catalog.
Image via Amanda Anderson Photography
The open kitchen shelving and exposed ventilation hoods that have been so popular lately are about to go out of style. Closed cabinetry is back, including disguised hoods and full upper cabinets, but in a modernized version that stretches all the way to the ceiling (or at least avoids awkward dust-collecting gaps in between). The idea is to make everything look cleaner and more streamlined. Nobody likes their dishes getting coated in grease, anyway.
Rounded Edges and Flowing Forms
Image via CB2
Hard, straight lines and geometric shapes are out in favor of comforting curves. Part of the drive to feel closer to nature, this trend will manifest as curvy couches, arched doorways, circular mirrors, and rounded edges on items like kitchen islands and coffee tables.
Image via Amanda Anderson Photography
If there’s one increasingly dated trend to take down to maintain a little balance, it’s the overuse of signage. We’ve lived, laughed ,and loved our way into a new decade, and we don’t need everything in sight to have an obvious label like “laundry,” “bathroom,” and “eat here.” Come on, guys. Even Joanna Gaines has moved on.