The Forecast Calls for Comfort and Style

I was recently asked to offer some design insights for the year to come. Now, typical forecasting projects years into the future. Tricky stuff, at best. Instead I sort of like the ground troops approach, meaning what are my clients doing right now and what are they asking for? What makes sense for them now and years into the future. So, here are a few things we are working on for the coming year and hope to see continue into 2016…

~ We are seeing a trend in unplugging and going back to a Comfort- Style

A good friend who is a designer recently showed me her design boards for her brand new home. I couldn’t hide the look on my face that said, “On purpose? Isn’t this what we are trying to move away from?”

Before I could say anything, thankfully, she chimed in with enthusiasm, “It’s just like my grandmother’s house!”

“You say that like it’s a good thing”, I thought.

And then she did that magic thing that designers do, when they weave a tale that brings it all together.

She was hearkening back to a simpler time. White washed kitchens and warm brass knobs. Bold peonies and lattice on the walls, creamy bowls of white light and not a hand held device in sight

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Courtesy of ESNY

It really was a brilliant plan. You would always walk in with a sense of belonging. Instant comfort.

Big bold patterns in wallpaper and gentle colors are gracing walls. Hand worn hues of gold are returning to lighting and hardware. Even Formica is in on the movement, but back with a whole new array of colors and styles.

Thibault Wallpaper

~We are seeing continued strength with white kitchens that are not truly white upon closer examination. Ben Moore’s color of the year, Simply White, is a great example of a white hint of something else.

Mandeville Canyon Designs fea. Karen Grant

Mandeville Canyon Designs fea. Karen Grant


Right now we are installing a new kitchen, with PK Surroundings, in California Paint Crisp Muslin. It’s white with a purpose.


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It still reads fresh and comforting, but with it’s own personality.

~ Quartz countertops continue to be strong for their ease of use and unending array of mesmerizing palettes. We are using Cambria’s, Brittanicca, on that same white kitchen.


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Courtesy of


The dramatic ribbons of gray, black and bone allow great range of movement without overwhelming the space. Other great companies include Pental, Caesarstone and Silestone, just to name a few. Alternative materials like IceStone and Richlite, made out of paper are also durable and stylish choices with a great environmental backbone.

~Mixed metals are thankfully on the rise. I love the permission to mix up your metals in a space.

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Gone is the idea that every knob in your house has to be brushed nickel. There are so many fabulous metal finishes out there (the finishes from Brizo are warm and delicious),

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Brizo, RSVP







starting with the long awaited rearrival of brass. With so many finishes to choose from, there is bound to be something that delights everyone of us.

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Schoolhouse Electric


Right now we are using a beautiful collection of lighting from Hubbardton Forge that speaks to this concept perfectly. We are combining the soft gold finish (give us more in 2016, please!) with bronze for the Cosmo and then reinforcing the bronze with the Exos Collection.


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From the Cosmo Collection, Hubbardton Forge

~Follow that up with another design trend, textured wallpaper, and you have an elegant, grounded and earthy vibe that works in both casual and sophisticated settings.

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Maya Romanoff Weathered Metals II

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Phillip Jeffries Rivet


We are using Maya Romanoff’s Weathered Metals II collection as well as Philip Jeffries Rivet collection. The trend is toward textural and tactile. The kind that begs you to reach out and touch.





And if that’s not enough how about some jewelry for the walls. Maya also offers a stunning collection of beaded wallpaper called Beadazzled.

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Maya Romanoff Beadazzled






And even if you are renting, no worries, there are great new repositionable wallpapers that let everyone get in on the fun.


~Color palettes are continuing to mimic nature and also provide hits of high contrast.

Like mixing metals, do be afraid to mix your sheen as well. We are just about to install a grasscloth wallpaper combined with a high gloss chocolate ceiling to help reflect light as well as act as a conversation piece. Nature constantly combines shiny and matte. Why let it have all the fun!


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Courtesy of New England Home

To read more about the high gloss trend, pop over to The Decorated House~


~The last and most endearing trend is shopping local. Seek out the talent in your own backyard. Sure you might spend a little more than online, but there is no price tag on knowing that you are investing in your own economy and helping to keep a person you probably know by first name in business.

I took my little Parisian sconce in to have a few crystals repaired. The salesperson apologized that the owner was away this week. He was at the White House repairing and cleaning the chandeliers there. When he returned he cleaned up mine just as well. Who knew?


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So all of these trends combine to speak of comfort and earthy organic elements. They invite us to take a step back, unplug, rediscover our roots, embrace the imperfection and take a chance. And along the way, check out a local shop. You never know what secrets may lie within.

For even more inspiration, check out the forecast on our Pinterest board.

Here’s to a warm and inviting 2016!