When the economy tanked in 2008, homeowners hit the pause button on furniture purchases and home renovations. They stood back, watched their savings and retirement accounts take a roller-coaster ride, and generally stopped investing in home decor.
Nearly five years later, Julie Rogowski, vice president and general manager of the Boston Design Center, says that sentiment finally may be turning an important and well-decorated corner.
“The emphasis is changing from ‘Where can I save the most money’ to ‘What’s the perfect piece that totally reflects me.’ It’s a nice shift,” Rogowski says. “It could be the economy, or it could be that people are ready for change.”
It’s one of the findings of the Boston Design Center’s yearly trend report, released Wednesday. Each year, Rogowski sifts through the hundreds of new products that arrive in the center’s 82 showrooms to identify changing tastes and trends in interior design. The 550,000-square-foot hub of interior design and architecture is where professional interior designers shop for clients.
“People are now looking at their homes and making them more of a reflection of their day-to-day activities,” she says.
She says those shifting tastes are apparent in a variety of trends, such as punchy patterns and 1940s Hollywood noir styles. Here’s a sampling of what will be turning up in homes next year.
Animal prints: These are not zebra or leopard prints, but animals frolicking across upholstery fabrics. Some of the most popular? Elephants and dogs. “Who doesn’t want a dog that looks good that you don’t have to clean up after?” Rogowski says.
Florals: Flowers are a decorating staple, but the buds showing up in 2013 are more modern, and, as Rogowski explains, more painterly. There are also Scandinavian-influenced posies blossoming on fabrics.
Stripes: This was a huge runway trend during Spring/Summer 2013 Fashion Week, and it looks as if there will be no escaping stripes in home decor as well. “Designers like it because it brings movement to a room,” she says.
Blue: Rogowski says there is no big shift in trending colors from 2012 to 2013. In 2012, the big color was green. For 2013, she says it’s blue. “It’s a universal favorite among men and women,” she says. “In this trend, we’re seeing blue used almost as a neutral. Instead of black, there’s navy.”
Yellow: “We’re calling this mellow yellow because it is really muted against a lot of those neons and bright colors we saw last year.” Like blue, she says this paler yellow is being used in a neutral shade against darker and richer colors.
Red: Orange was the attention-grabbing shade of 2012. For 2013, Rogowski says red is the power color — but in moderation.
Femme fatale: She describes this style as feminine, but not girly. A throwback to 1940s Hollywood with soft, curvy lines and pops of pink and purple.
Metropolitan: This style echoes boutique hotel scale and modernity. “The furnishings are all about clean lines,” she says. “It’s more of an industrial feel than you would ever see in suburbia.”