Trend spotting is getting harder. There was a time when it was easy to identify a set of clearly defined palettes, prints and products that were updated each season, making a neat progression from the design studios onto the high street.
But in recent years, we’ve moved towards looks that are as much about individuality and personality as they are about fashion, and we’re shunning throwaway buys in favour of investing in good design that will go the distance.
There are still trends, if you look carefully enough, but they’re more fluid than ever – suggestions and themes, rather than strict rules. Here’s our round-up of some of the things you’ll start seeing more of as we journey through 2015.
This year more than ever, versatility is key. Rooms need to be multifunctional and adaptable. Furniture and accessories must fulfil more than one role, and combine practicality with aesthetics that will be loved for years to come.
There will be an increase in home styling – reinventing rather than totally replacing – with old treasures displayed alongside new buys, carefully curated to form changing displays. We’ll be investing more in less, choosing carefully, valuing craftsmanship and buying direct from makers where we can.
Reinterpreting classics and blending trends, especially traditional, contemporary and rustic, will add to the eclectic nature of our interiors, with mix-and-match furniture and multiple prints still going strong. Buying only that which you really love will help ensure you hit the right notes by creating a look that’s unique to you.
Colour is very definitely back. But as for which shades to choose, it’s a case of pretty much anything goes. They will be used in every imaginable combination – tone on tone, contrasting, natural, exotic – with non-traditional blends scoring the highest style points.
There are a few hero colours, notably blue. Especially popular are the darker shades like deep navy, indigo and inky blue, which make a good alternative to black, as well as ocean-inspired tones from aqua to teal, which contrast well with 2014’s copper metallics.
Speaking of which, the copper trend has given rise to Dulux’s colour of 2015, copper blush, a soft pinky orange shade with plenty of depth. Pantone’s colour of the year, marsala, is also from the warm side of the colour wheel. This earthy yet sophisticated shade of red brown is ideal for kitchens and dining rooms. Add it into your existing colour scheme with tableware, work-surface appliances and linens throughout the home. Try painting walls with Jotun’s Bordeaux, from the brand’s spring/summer 2014 collection.
Print is alive and well, with everything from paisley and plaid to kilim and ikat making an appearance on fabrics for 2015, often combined with a contemporary colour palette or used either oversized or in miniature to bring the look up to date.
Relaxed graphics, loose geometrics and blurred lines, all of which are coming across from the catwalk, are useful for softening a monochrome palette, while striking chevron prints continue to be popular in every room.
There’s a new wave of ethnic prints for this year, with a diverse heritage reflecting our increasingly global community. Strong graphics in muted palettes are particularly effective when combined with almost Nordic minimalism – lots of wood, raw metal, and whitewashed walls – creating a cool, sophisticated look.
Native American patterns will be particularly big in the next year, and can be layered up with sun-bleached wood, leather and animal hide, a desert colour palette and cultural motifs such as dreamcatchers and the American flag for a strong trend statement.
There’s also plenty of texture around; velvets, rustic weaves and even corduroy are all gaining popularity with designers, as well as details like appliqué and crewel, reflecting our interest in handicrafts and slow skills.
Salvaged wood, stone and metal will be popular through 2015, while animal hide has been added into the designer’s toolbox of natural materials – not just for rugs, but also as upholstery and cushions.
But the biggest way to make a statement is using plants. Oversized interior landscaping reflects our love of nature, and if you have the budget, you could invest it in a “green wall” of floor-to-ceiling plants. If not, layer up pot plants into large groupings of varying heights and textures.
At the other end of the scale, the digital revolution continues to effect our home interiors. Photographic imagery looks set to get bigger, especially Instagram-style snapshots, printed onto everything from wall murals to cushions.
Although wallpaper continues to be popular, feature walls are out. Instead, zonal painting is the new way to add interest to vertical surfaces, using two or more block colours to distinguish whole walls or even segments.
Fibre art and other fabric, wool and mixed-media wall hangings have replaced the once popular metal “wall art” structures. Gain extra points by making your own, hanging it from a piece of driftwood and, naturally, uploading a picture to Pinterest.
Last but not least are the finishing touches, which we’ll be paying a lot more attention to this year. Drawer knobs and light switches will be chosen with as much care as bureaus and lamps, and kitchen fixtures are having their moment in the sun, with gold and other warm metals taking over from the regular stainless steel.
As we enter a new season, it’s exciting to look forward to the new ranges that will be hitting the shops. But even more exciting will be seeing how individuals interpret the colour, patterns, materials and items on offer, and discovering the unique looks they create.