In 2022, designers created spaces in homes to accommodate a work-from-home or home-school lifestyle: comfortable and calming rooms, serving as a place of respite from the pandemic-hit world .
Interior design in 2023, however, is taking a different turn, according to local experts. This year, interior design is more focused on bold, eye-catching statements and reflecting the owner’s personality.
Tulsa interior designers Julia Kirkendall and Mel Bean weighed in on the top interior design trends they anticipate for the new year.
Revamp old furniture
Many homeowners want to incorporate pieces into their homes that tell a story. Using old objects and heirlooms in new ways is becoming a popular method for adding personalization to the home, Kirkendall said.
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“People are looking to tell a story in their homes about who they are, where they’ve been, or how they grew up,” Kirkendall said. “It happens through heirloom pieces and antiques that remind them of where they have been. People want homes that reflect their lives.
Bean agreed that legacy decor is something that will become increasingly important in 2023.
“It seems like for years people really wanted brand new furniture,” Bean said. “Now we source older antique pieces and focus on preserving them. In a bathroom remodel, for example, where everything looks fairly new, we could use an antique wooden mirror to bring in more character and history.
Aim for sustainability
Tied to the desire for antiques is an increased desire for eco-friendly furniture and decor, Kirkendall said.
“We’re building in sustainability by ditching some of the inexpensive new furniture that would make our homes look like they’re in a magazine for repurposed furniture that’s been reupholstered or antiques,” Kirkendall said.
“People are also focusing on investment pieces — really nice pieces of furniture that we’re willing to spend money on that will last a lifetime in our homes and then be passed down,” Kirkendall said.
In 2023, more people are concerned about the ethics of where and how the products they keep in their homes are made, Bean said. Companies that focus more on the number of items they produce rather than the quality are losing popularity.
“People are much more aware of sustainability and are concerned about who makes the products, and if they have fair wages and good working conditions,” Bean said. “We buy things that are made to last.”
Bean said more and more homeowners are drawn to a high level of craftsmanship and expertise when furnishing their spaces.
“People value craftsmanship more than we do in recent years and buy from companies that make items to order or have customizable finishes, shape options and other elements,” Bean said. “They’re fine with paying more for a beautifully crafted piece by someone whose story they know.”
Focus on color
In recent years, incorporating color into the home through decorating or painting has become increasingly popular. In 2023, we’ll see more homeowners paint entire rooms bright colors, Kirkendall said.
“A big trend I see coming is to paint an entire room with one color, making it look a bit moody,” Kirkendall said.
Colors that Bean says will feature in many interior designers’ color palettes this year include greens, blues and peachy pinks.
“The smoky, light grey-green colors are almost a new neutral – I’ve seen them used a lot in cabinetry and furniture – you can pair them with wood, marble or wallpaper,” Bean said. “Navy and blue shades are popular, as well as a peach blush color. They feel very classic but still bring a lot of life to a space.
Play with wallpaper
Wallpaper has made a comeback in the interior design world in recent years, but its popularity will continue to grow in 2023, Kirkendall said. Designers use wallpaper in interesting ways to spice up every room in a home.
“There are no borders for wallpaper right now,” Kirkendall said. “We don’t just do walls – we use wallpaper to decorate the inside of closets, ceilings, furniture and even doors.”
Bean said wallpaper that uses intricate designs and patterns – like those from the William Morris company – is popping up everywhere in interiors.
“We see a lot of wallpapers with smaller, repeating patterns or large-scale art nouveau patterns,” Bean said. “Instead of neutrals, we see more colors used in wallpaper. A lot of the wallpapers I see look more traditional – they don’t necessarily look like they were created in 2023.”
Adding wood to the home provides homeowners with much-desired texture and character in their spaces, Kirkendall said.
“For so long, we neutralized everything,” Kirkendall said. “Now we are adding wood back into our homes through furniture, stained cabinetry, and even accents on the ceilings.”
Wood is popping up more and more in kitchens, Bean said, because it can add a warm, rustic feel to a home.
“I see more and more homes wanting beautiful stained wood cabinetry in their kitchens,” Bean said. “People really want their cabinets to look like they’re in a century-old home. They’re always updated and have modern amenities — they can have flush doors, with latches, and antique-looking accents. It mixes eras and makes you feel transported.
Adding texture to walls by using different wall finishes makes a room more dimensional, Kirkendall said.
“We use new wall finishes, like a limewash or plaster finish, to provide variation in texture,” Kirkendall said. “I just added a plaster finish to a range hood in a kitchen, and it had a major impact. It’s a new look that I think is going to be a huge trend.
Out with the old
Some trends that became popular in 2022 won’t carry over into the new year, Bean said.
“Last year we saw a lot of curved lines on tables, sofas and upholstered items,” Bean said. “While it’s still very beautiful, I think we’re going to see less of it.”
Bedrooms decorated in all neutral tones are also losing popularity, Bean said.
“For a while, very neutral pieces that almost looked like a desert somewhere were really popular — they were in every catalog,” Bean said. “We can still have those neutral colors, but I think they’ll be mixed more with colorful patterns and textures that will make them look completely different.”