Decorating Trends 2021

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The 2021 decorating trends will set the tone for the coming decade, so let’s take a look at the latest interior design trends.

Scandi minimalism, industrial kitchens and exposed lighting have all had their moment. What will replace them in the coming year?

Sustainability – a Decor Trend for 2021 and Beyond

Sustainability is not so much a fashion trend as an inescapable theme in our cultural conversation, and one that’s going to take firmer hold with every year. So this is the first and foremost of the decorating trends 2021 will see: we’ll be thinking about how our lifestyles can be adapted to be kinder to the ecology. And the decor choices we make will feel the impact of this new mentality. Rightly so.

Buy mass-produced new furniture and you might need to replace it in a few years. Aside from the fact that buying cheap often turns out to be a false economy, it also contributes to our unsustainable culture of waste. Cheap furniture tends to rely more on plastics which can’t easily be reused and which won’t biodegrade for hundreds of years.

More and more, expect decor trends to take these realities into account. Not everyone has the money to splurge on masterfully built top-end pieces that will last a lifetime, but we’ll see a new appetite for upcycling – finding a new purpose for items that have fallen out of use – and more willingness to buy second-hand. True, sought-after vintage pieces can go for daunting prices. But fantastic deals can be found on only slightly lived-in furniture if you’re ready to do a little searching.

Organic Materials

As understanding spreads about the need for sustainable living, it’ll be reflected in the very textures and materials found in our homes. Organic doesn’t have to mean unstylish. Some of the most adventurous contemporary designers are introducing mediums like stone and reclaimed wood into their home decor visions. There’s no reason timeless materials like bamboo and granite can’t be tailored perfectly to the domestic needs of modern life.

Make wall decor choices that align with a sustainable philosophy. Canvas prints reproduce your digital photo images in line with 21st-century production values, but the materials involved are decidedly timeless: real gallery-style canvas stretched over spruce wood frames and printed with solvent-free inks. So you can enjoy cutting-edge personalised photo printing without the guilt.

Decor trends for 2021. Photo Canvas print of a woman and plants in a modern interior.

Some of the easiest and cheapest decor items to freshen up your living space are made 100% from organic materials. We’re talking about plants. A judiciously placed areca palm or peace lily can play off your existing colour scheme beautifully and create a whole new mood. And you won’t need to call a household meeting to discuss financing options beforehand. Plus, what could be more sustainable than a living thing – one that actually absorbs carbon dioxide! Top tip: warming, soulful terracotta is a perfect alternative to plastic that will let you keep it sustainable when choosing plant pots.

Break the Fifth Wall!

Feature walls have been a staple of decor advice for years now. The advantages of going bold on a single wall and keeping the others more neutral should be familiar to most of us by now – the bloggers and TV experts have seen to that. A feature wall brings focus to a particular area, undercutting the structural monotony of the average room. It lets you work your decor choices for the whole space around the bold note you’ve introduced. And it lets you experiment with daringly piquant colours that might become overwhelming if they were too dominant.

In all this advice the ceiling has simply gone unmentioned, the assumption being that it will simply be left plain. It’s time to reconsider. Think of the ceiling as the “fifth wall” of your room and you’ll open up new decor territory for 2021.

Decor trends for 2021. Green paint applied to the wall.

A feature ceiling calls for a slightly different approach. There’ll be more surface area to play with, and the effect will be just as strong wherever in the room you’re standing – so there’ll be nowhere to hide if your colour choice has tipped the balance from “punchy” to “bludgeoning”.

Paint isn’t necessarily your friend here. Wallpaper has moved far, far on from the grandmaternal patterns of the last century. A dynamic print that leaves a bit of space in-between the bold colours will give your room the zest you want without sucking up too much light. And as for using wallpaper paste above your head? Newly refined peel-and-stick prints mean you needn’t even think about that terrifying prospect.

Get Your Trim in Trim

2021 will see minimalist trends continue to take a back seat. If you’ve gone with a very bare clean-white aesthetic in the last few years you might be thinking about a new direction. But a complete reworking of your room with decorative frills and a new palette of trendy earth tones won’t suit everyone’s taste – or everyone’s wallet.

Decor trends for 2021. Black window trim.

Sometimes just the slightest touches can transform the feel of a room. Painting your window trim black is a move that’s quietly daring without being too risky. You can give that calming but characterless space a gutsy twist without losing the clean sense of order you worked hard to achieve. A dash of black goes a long way, meaning the impact will be felt in your living space, not in your pocket. The contrast is most pronounced against white or other very light shades, but black provides so much oomph that it can lend its power to a whole range of colours. Use gloss black against a matte background for an even more striking accent.

And the Boldest Decor Trend of 2021… Dark Green

Maybe you’ve thought about trying dark paints before but always come home from the DIY store with the same old greys and creams. Well, now to our last tip for decorating trends 2021: if you feel ready to bring some deep, rich colour into your living space, now’s the time to make a statement. But you were right to feel a bit cautious. There is a real possibility that deep plum just isn’t for you, let alone caviar black. Get this wrong and you can feel like you’ve moved the walls a couple of feet inwards and dimmed the lights down a couple of shades – and paid for the privilege.

Decor trends for 2021. Hunter green colour for walls. ​​

Dark greens are a good choice if you want to take some braver steps with colour but don’t want to risk feeling claustrophobic. Arriving home after a tiring day should give you a grounding, cosy feel, and greens produce an effortlessly natural effect that’s restful without feeling leaden. A very bold hue like hunter green should be reserved for large, well-lit rooms so as not to become overpowering. But a darker tint of sage green is more forgiving and lends a classic note of authority to any living area. Provided you offset your deep shades with brighter accents – and you can think about achieving this with furniture, not just doors and ceilings – you’ll be wondering where dark green’s been all your life.

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