Somehow in the last couple of years, time has stretched yet stalled in ways most of us can’t quite comprehend: it seems as though the initial pandemic lockdown was only yesterday and yet, there are less than three months left of 2021. 

The ongoing impacts of Covid-19 and the restrictions and life changes it has brought about has shaped all aspects of life: including property design and development, and the way we choose to furnish our homes. But as 2022 approaches and perhaps we can all finally detect hope and healing on the horizon, what trends will we see in interior design? We asked some experts, and they advised of the following…

A Touch of the 70s

The 90s may currently be the retro kickback in clothing fashion, but the 70s is about to make its comeback for interior design. This vintage theme will not be the bold patterned wallpaper and aubergine coloured bathroom fittings you’ve only just stripped from your grandparents’ home but instead suggestions and colour pops of burnt orange, moss greens and other warm neutrals. 

Items to lend these pops of brightness and patterns can be found at local flea markets, antique stores and junkyards. Routinely visiting these places and keeping an eye out for 70s pieces online can help you find lots of complementary items to mix and match and provide a retro flair.

A living room with selection of house plants

Bringing the Outside, In

The houseplant trend we saw bloom through 2021 is set to continue through 2022. Bringing authentic greenery into the home has been proven to improve internal air quality, promote endorphins and, well, to make the place look great!

Retailers have moved with the increased demand for houseplants and most now stock a good variety to cater for everyone, so there’s something for every room and every capability of green fingers. A sweetheart plant is a versatile climber happy in shaded rooms, hole-y monstera plants with their unique cut-out leaves thrive in low-light interiors, fiddle leaf fig trees are hardy and bushy but need lots of sun, and snake plants only need infrequent watering to flourish.

A converted office hobby space

Converting Spaces to Multifunction

Unless you live in a mansion, chances are that some of your home’s rooms are multifunctional. Instances of this have only increased through the coronavirus crisis as millions of people started to work from home without a dedicated office room. Through 2022, however, we’re likely to see this become a design feature of houses and not just a requirement.

Using vertical space and storage and getting creative with fold-down beds, cupboard desks and hidden storage, multifunctional spaces are set to firmly become a feature for all – prioritising space optimisation without the need to invest heavily and move to a larger property.

Embracing Minimalism

What begins as a habit for many is fast becoming a design trend through British homes. As homeowners work to ‘spring’ clean at the beginning of each season and year, they look to enhance the focal point and central purpose of a room. Decluttering and highlighting only the most basic need for a room strips back anything unnecessary. The aesthetic is complemented further by using as few materials as possible and limiting ornamentation. Visual interest can instead be generated through the use of texture or colour contrast.

Minimalism isn’t appropriate for everyone (if you’ve got a toddler, it’s not likely to work!), but where it works, it provides beautiful and relaxing living spaces.

Large floor to ceiling windows in a property

Mirroring Nature

The desire to bring ‘the outside in’ was felt heavily through 2020 and 2021 as people craved connection with the outdoors but were often unable to leave the house. This sparked the houseplant trend (as mentioned above) but through 2022, will develop further.

Maximising glass through the usage of large windows, bright internal separators and oversized glass pendants will improve light levels and decreases the amount of plastic in the home; moving toward more sustainable, natural materials being used throughout.

Introducing Curves

For too long interior design has represented only harsh, straight lines – pausing only briefly for the now-infamous Ikea stackable ‘wavy mirror’ in the 00s. 2021 is seeing an increase in curvy furniture, and these rounded edges are set to grow in popularity well into 2022.

Furniture and décor with softer edges are more forgiving, make a room feel cosier and can even complement more strictly angled pieces to highlight them. Another throwback from the decades of the twentieth century, we’re seeing furniture designers expand from the classic C-shape sofas into soft-edge tables, reimagined contemporary seating and even scaped mantelpieces and shelves. 

Contrasting Soft and Strong with Velvet

In support of the softer shapes we’re seeing heading into homes, textiles are providing contrasting and complementary textures. Velvet, a soft but striking feel that echoes luxury and prestige alongside comfort is growing in popularity for furnishings.

Either in a single colour or several complementary shades, velvet can be made the focal point of a room as a full sofa or chair or used for a subtler aesthetic with scatter cushions, throws or smaller upholstery projects. 

A bathroom with geometric flooring

Nostalgic Floor Patterns

Patterned tiles through kitchens, bathrooms and occasionally exterior paths have grown in popularity through the last couple of years but we’re beginning to see nostalgic floor patterns be introduced into other rooms too.

Herringbone floors using real wood as well as other geometric hard-floor patterns can be installed in most living spaces to immediately introduce a smart, sculpted feel. To best pull of a pattern on a large scale without it overwhelming a room, it is best to stick to a neutral colour palette without individual patterns featured and allow the overall lines to do the talking.

For many, the beginning of 2022 will signify a new era of hope – a long-awaited return to ‘normal’ after the topsy turvy conditions of the last few years. With this we’re set to see some beautiful living spaces created because after all, if you can’t feel cosy in your own home, where can you?

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