Here are 4 major shifts in the way we design homes in 2022.
More functionality: whenever we start working with a new client, we always ask how do you use these rooms, what do you do here, what do you want to do here. And while it seems obvious, it can take some work for many to figure out how they need their house to function. For many that meant bigger mudrooms with storage areas, rec spaces set up for both kids and adults to have friends over and having some privacy, open floor plans that work for entertaining with areas that can be closed off via pocket doors etc to allow for privacy, wine rooms, and more functional space use throughout the room.
It would have been easier and less expensive to just replace the desk area with new cabinets but I knew that gutting that whole section would allow me to get so much more storage and functionality out of that area. Replacing tile with hardwoods which match the rest of the house makes the space look bigger as well.
Here the homeowner requested a seating area on one side and a table or lower cabinet to store some items in. Given that this was the only entry to the house functioning both as a foyer and mudroom, I knew we needed something more functional. The space is narrow so I didnt want furniture on both walls, just one. Custom cabinetry has off season storage on the top, coat storage on the sides, shoe storage on the bottom and benches on either side for sitting down. Middle section however has boot storage on the bottom, pull outs for mittens, etc and masks with a charging station and counter space for purses.
Organic approach: connecting inside with outside via sight lines has always been an important tenet of interior/exterior design and has really become crucial during Covid. We need our backyards to be the extension of our living spaces and lot of the outdoor materials have been coming inside as well. Lots of texture, grasscloth, natural materials and colors were increasingly popular in 2020/21 and we’ll see that into 2022. This also lead to renovating HVAC systems to make them more green and efficient, swapping out windows and doors, etc. Furniture with curved lines, ribbing, fluting, matte metals and softer architectural details, arched door openings and use of stained wood over painted.
After renovating the fireplace in the adjacent room, we were able to relocate the TV there as well so the husband and their 2 boys could watch games there, which led us to turn this area into a cozy reading nook for the mom. Adding pocket doors allows her to have some privacy if the game is on and with the doors open there’s great flow for entertaining, group of tables in the middle provide both storage and can be pulled up to respective seats. Adding a chandelier highlights the ceiling height and using the same wall color makes the odd angles disappear.
More color: the more chaotic the outside world, the more we seek comfort and respite in our homes. Even if your palette is firmly rooted in neutral tones, adding rich, saturated colors such as red, green, brown to the mix will instantly make rooms feel more comfortable and personal. It requires a step outside one’s comfort zone but the end result is so worth it. Think of all these modern farmhouse open floor plan, white washed rooms which look great in day time but loose all their crispness and coziness at night. Adding color will make a huge difference.
Formal living room: since this is adjacent to the family room, I wanted it to have a very different vibe. This room became the evening/music room, perfect for entertaining or reading the book by the fire. Dark color cocoons and envelops the room and at night it simply glows.
Upright piano was in the living room and we recommended moving it over the office and designed built ins around it which house printer and office supplies. If the children tire of piano, it can easily be replaced with a loveseat. The room itself was rather lackluster but washing it rich blue color adds instant interest.
Using antiques: We love using some antiques in the design, it adds more depth, visual interest and personality. That doesn’t mean holding on to a piece from your beloved grandmother when it isn’t right for the room. But antiques, updated in a fresh way, can be a great addition to your space. Reusing items is not only greener than buying new, it really adds so much more depth and interest to the room. Repurpose, refinish and unify with color to create an authentic and timeless interior.
This space had too many antiques and thus felt dated and off balance. We kept the furniture but upholstered everything in lighter colors adding more pattern and texture to the room.
The two seasons of Covid for all its misery brought along an increased emphasis on practicality and function in our homes and we here at HDS Design are all for that. We also loved that there were fewer requests for the rather generic modern farmhouse look or gray on gray where everyone’s homes sort of looked the same and clients were more willing to express their personality and explore color. Is your home all it could be? If not, contact us and we’ll be happy to assist! Stay well!