I am always excited and inspired when it's time for the fashionistas in the clothing and home furnishings industries to roll out the red carpet and strut their new stuff. Those ultra-cool designs, a fresh take on colors - there is always some wonderful sight that latches onto my imagination, and I just have to get a piece of it.
Trends tell a story about what’s going on around us. It’s a narrative that you might not like or agree with, but for a short period of time it’s the future. While it’s not feasible or even desirable to impose a complete change of wardrobe or a furniture sweep every six months, we can splurge on one or two accessories.
A tall, graceful, perfectly turned bathroom faucet, a row of glass tiles in the kitchen, a lamp that lights up the room with its brazen shape are all small details that are guaranteed to make you feel that you are in the moment. And that’s the fun of it. Never buy because it’s the “in” thing to do, but if it’s out-there and you love it, take the leap and enjoy the impact that one small change can make to your personal environment.
Here are some ideas that spring from the trends I’ve noted for 2011. Bathrooms have taken a dramatic turn during the past few years, with the spa experience growing in epic proportions. Check out the fabulous styles in faucets, taps and shower heads. Tall, sweeping lines transform faucets into mini waterfalls; oversized shower heads create a gentle rain experience – both a vision of calm, pure freedom. Visit newportbrass.com for the latest styles and finishes, including the Secant faucet with a height of 63/4 inches.
Colors this year are quite literally a tonic for the doom and gloom of the recession. Take a break from the sober hues; bring on, or back, the optimism of the ’50s. Creative collaborations between painterly patterns and bright shades set up a joyful ambience in any room. Choose from vibrant marigold, yummy caramel, poppy red, sulfur green and bright blue. No need to replace sofas and chairs; simply line up a row of throw cushions. Paint a wall or hang a few rolls of that bold, large print wallpaper – another trend that is holding fast.
Back to nature and natural materials places the ethereal beauty of branches and blossoms as a main theme in patterns. Fill a large urn with budding branches to augment the theme. Wood and wood veneers are being rediscovered as a favored floor covering. Dark hues are prevalent, but mixing dark and light woods as a prominent detail is stunning. Recycling furniture and building materials brings about its own retro style.
Patterns vary from modern big and bold to vintage tiny rose patterns and vintage prints. You might not be ready for fat navy blue stripes on the wall, but why not try a dazzling geometric area rug? Bed linens are a complex mix of geometric shapes and repeat patterns that look amazing layered over a crisp white sheet. And last but never least is the lighting explosion. There’s so much clever humor and style in this industry right now, decisions are really tough. More on this in a future column.
Debbie Travis’ House to Home column is produced by Debbie Travis and Barbara Dingle. You can follow Debbie on Twitter at www.twitter.com/debbie_travis. Please e-mail your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
A special note
Happy New Year to all my faithful readers! In 2011, along with my newest adventures and projects, I plan to celebrate all YOUR wonderful talents. I will feature your most innovative and intriguing decorating ideas right here in my newspaper column. Whether you have the passion to decorate as a hobby or it is your profession, please visit www.debbietravis.com to learn more.