As we are remodeling one of our houses, we’ve been spending a ton of time looking at magazines, Pinterest, and new developments for ideas and inspiration (and HGTV, of course!). One of the biggest changes we’ve made was knocking out three walls to create an open concept in the kitchen, dining, and living rooms. Open concept has been front and center in the home design trend. It can make smaller, older homes feel brand new, and new homes feel like mansions. Along with the open concept comes islands and open shelving in the kitchens. While the open shelving can be great for displaying china and kitchenware, we’ve opted for upper cabinets with glass for a clean, pretty look. Islands are now more than additional counter space. They’ve become the center of the kitchen, often built to mimic a dining table. The kitchen typically is the gathering place of the home, and the island is now at the heart and center.
Another trend hitting home design is mixing the interior finishes. I know we all remember the brass and gold looks from the ‘80s and ‘90s. For the past decade, silver and nickel finishes have been a more popular choice. One of the easiest updates in a house can be exchanging fixtures if they don’t fit your preference. During our current renovation, the light fixtures and doors were updated almost immediately. While it’s been commonplace to choose and stick with one “color” or finish, the current trend includes mixing those. Cabinet holds may be a brassy look, while black and nickel/silver finishes are used on lighting or doors. Combined with stainless appliances, the variety creates quite a striking look in a home.
Outdoor space is also increasingly important to clients. Having an outdoor living area is essentially more square footage for entertaining. While our current renovation had a large front porch – that comfortably houses several rocking chairs for summer evenings – we are constructing a patio with brick pavers that will eventually lead to a pool. If a home doesn’t have an outdoor living area, walkability is a must. Fortunately, many newer developments are recognizing that buyers want access to greenways or parks. Developers are including such areas in the site plans if developments are not located near existing green space.
At the end of the day, how you design or decorate your home is up to you. Regardless of how trendy something may be, if it’s not functional for you and your family, it’s not worth it. Your home should be an expression and extension of you. As William Morris said, “ Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.”