If you want to put a splash of color in your home this year, turquoise has been declared the hot new hue. But designers who attended the recent furniture industry gathering in High Point, North Carolina, are telling us that most people will be sticking with neutral tones and familiar forms this year because of the continuing uncertainty of the times.
“We’re in the midst of a roller-coaster economy,” says Gale Steves, design maven and chief creative officer at Open House Productions. “A lot of things are uncertain and the products and colors we are seeing (now) reflect this. Gone is the glitter and anything that shouts, ‘Look at me!’ Instead, think subtle, soothing, substance. We are seeing a trend toward simplicity and comfort, and in style, very simple traditional.”
Save the turquoise for accent pillows and possibly wall paint, because they’re easily replaced when the trend is over, designers say. For the more expensive, larger pieces that have to last a long time, try to buy furniture that won’t go out of style. “Neutrals — stone, oatmeal, warm mineral colors, taupes and grays — are going to be strong because money is a little tighter,” says designer Barry Dixon. “You’ll see color used judiciously for a strong pop.”
Homeowners are repeating the mantra, “I’m frugal but I’m not cheap.” They’re watching pennies but they also want pieces that will last for generations. Consumers “want quality in all aspects of their life,” says Lynn Courtade, an independent home furnishings specialist. “Their growing demand for quality products also plays to the environmental issue.” L. & J. G. Stickley’s new Gus Sideboard in oak continues the company’s long-standing tradition of quality construction and the Mission style that has endured for decades. (315-682-5500; stickley.com)