Shelley Ferguson hosted The Block NZ and is an award winning magazine editor. Using her love of interiors, she now has her own interior design business. Together with Newshub Shelley is running a six part online series called Your Place – where you’ll discover the latest styling trends and tips.
Here are the five latest trends to look out for 2021.
Rounded, curved, organic shapes are trending, perhaps because they instil reassurance and comfort especially during difficult times. Feeling like you’re being cuddled by a cocoon chair is a much needed antidote to reading the news right now!
Furniture including round occasional chairs and curved sofas are gaining popularity in plush fabrics like velvet and boucle. We’re seeing a range of rounded bulbs and shades in lighting, in materials like glass, timber, marble and matte metal.
Even bathroom tiles featuring circular patterns are now available. Ceramics are a popular choice for adding sculptural forms to tables, bookshelves or consoles, from smooth and curved to textured and misshapen. Houseplants with friendlier forms are trending – the Monstera is the most Insta-friendly plant for a reason! It has large, deep green glossy leaves with splits and holes, grows upwards and outwards in interesting formations, and loves to climb up supports or trail outwards.
Pro tip: To care for your monstera, pot in Yates Thrive Indoor Potting Mix and feed with Yates Thrive Plant Food Spikes Plants & Ferns (so easy to use!). Gently dust the leaves, and mist the foliage of your monstera with water during hot weather.
The trend towards harmony in the home has extended to paint colours, with calm, warm and earthy tones trending over the cool tones we’ve seen in the past decade. There’s an emphasis on decorating to express your personal style, and one of the easiest ways to do this is through the use of tonal colour.
Tonal decorating is a technique that takes a simple colour and uses various strengths of that colour in the same space. I love it because graduating colour is calming, it builds colour confidence (you know that light blue goes with dark blue!), and it adds depth and interest to a room.
A simple way to approach tonal colour selection is to use different shades and tints of the same colour (a shade is darker while a tint is lighter). For example, one of my favourite Resene greys is Silver Chalice. By using Resene Quarter Silver Chalice on interior walls (and ceilings if you’re feeling brave!), Resene Half Silver Chalice on exterior walls and Resene Double Silver Chalice on the front door and steps, you can achieve a look that’s cohesive and calming while still creating elegant impact.
If you’re set on one paint colour for the walls, then choose accessories in different depths of the same colour like art, cushions and accessories to achieve the tonal effect. Use different textures, materials and patterns for visual interest and include an accent colour or metallic to provide some contrast.
Pastels dominate as they make rooms look fresher and revitalise the spirit. Warm white, pale pink, peachy coral, sage green, dusky blue, straw, lilac and warm greys are trending, rather than the cooler tones seen over the last decade. If you need help with colours you can use the Resene Colour Expert service – free virtual colour consultations or in store colour consultations or in selected areas a Resene Colour Expert can come to you.
Plants with colourful leaves like rex begonia and wandering jew are also gaining popularity as you can choose one that reflects your personal style. There’s a trend towards having less things and instead creating vignettes, displays and focal points with groups of plants. Mother Nature is the colour expert of all, and many are decorating their homes using the colours seen in the natural world during their favourite season as inspiration.
Pro tip: Always test colours first. Pick up some A2 card from Resene and paint two coats using a Resene testpot leaving a border around the edge and then move it around the area to be painted during the day/night to see how it looks. Avoid painting directly onto the surface as the existing colour will affect how the new colour looks.
Get decorating ideas from other kiwi homeowners, habitatbyresene.co.nz or check out the latest looks.
Your home should tell a story about you, and those who love to be over the top are seeking homes to match. The stark minimalism seen for many years is making way for subtle maximalism. We’re not talking a riot of bright colours; more a mash-up of colour, texture and pattern to make a statement.
Benchtops and tiles in marbled effects and colours are a good example – they’re dramatic details but still beautiful and nature-inspired without being garish. In terms of paint colour, we’re seeing hues that are both comforting and add drama at the same time.
Designers are using dark velvety hues to transform rooms into cosy, intimate spaces, and opting for cabinetry in pale greys, blues and greens. Benchtops and tiles featuring colourful veins are trending teamed with feature tile splashbacks.
There’s a wide range of wall lights, chandeliers and glamourous pendants on offer adding high-end detailing rather than just brightening a room, especially in areas that need a focal point like entranceways or living rooms with high studs.
Choosing a matching set of pendants, wall lights and table lamps creates a considered, high-end look - Lighting Direct has a fabulous range of new luxury pendants that achieve an opulent look at an affordable price. If you struggle with colour but would love to be bolder, try choosing one statement element you love like a patterned tile or wallpaper and pulling the entire colour palette for your home from that. Or, book a Resene Colour Expert to help you choose your colours.
Pro tip: To help you choose wallpaper, identify your interior style. If it’s traditional, checks and stripes will tie in beautifully. If it’s fashion forward, opt for abstract patterns. Or if it’s natural, try natural materials like seagrass or motifs featuring plants. View a taste of the latest wallpapers online, or view the full collection at your local Resene ColorShop.
People are spending more time at home than ever before and assessing how their homes can support them during difficult times. As a result, we are seeing home design personalised to the hobbies, activities and experiences that are most important to us.
A popular example of this is the calming and restorative ‘nature’ home featuring a restful white, green and natural colour palette, bathrooms with day spa lighting and retreat luxuries, and flexible spaces used for yoga, meditation, reading and listening to music. As well as solar panels, a vege patch and a garden designed to attract the birds and the bees, urban garden systems for apartments, nature homes feature beautiful statement plants.
Lighting Direct has even launched Abode Connect, a range of colour-changing lamps to match your mood that can be controlled through the ISO/Android app on your phone or through Alexa/Google Home. (They’re also working on a voice control range, so watch this space!). People have enjoyed nurturing plants in lockdown, and as a result are curious about owning different species and learning how to care for them.
The most on-trend plants for 2020 are monstera, fiddle-leaf fig, crawling plants like Devil’s Ivy and Chain of Hearts, and trailing plants like String of Pearls. However, there are some up-and-comers on the scene, including baby rubber plants, the Arrowhead plant, Elephant’s Ear and the Prayer plant.
Choosing a plant you love the look of is fun but caring for it and seeing it thrive is the most rewarding part. Plants placed inside lack many of the natural elements outside to keep them healthy, so they need our help to thrive. If you’re a novice no worries – arm yourself with some basic information to help you (and your first plant babies!) to have a great long term relationship. Yates.co.nz/plants/indoor is the ideal online destination for plant ideas, advice and inspiration.
Pro tip: Yates Thrive Spikes are my go-to for ease of use and lack of mess – just insert spikes into the potting mix until it is just before the surface, give it some water and you are good to go!
People are seeking to team luxury with relaxation and smart features in their homes, resulting in an interesting range of materials being used. Benchtops and tiles in statement patterns that mimic stone, concrete and earth are popular and serve as the hero design feature in kitchens and bathrooms, teamed with modern cabinetry, timber accents and metallic tapware.
Tiles are available in large formats that create a seamless look, as well as practical ceramic and porcelain with thinner profiles that are easier to install than natural stone. Sustainability has become increasingly more important and people are investing in less ‘stuff’, and instead hero benchtops, tiles, lighting, paint and flooring, with the minimum amount of furniture and homewares to add a lived-in layer.
Pendant lighting in organic shapes and textures like glass, wicker, linen-look fabric and even wooden beads are popular, as are pendants and wall lights featuring touches of concrete, timber and metal. and with long-lasting LED bulbs in a range of whites that mimic natural light. We’re seeing smart technology take centre stage in homes to keep people organised, make their life easier and clear mental clutter. Beautiful objects handmade by artisans in stone, ceramic or glass are trending as people seek to show support for local. And homewares with a luxe look are popular, including marble bowls, bookends with metallic accents.
Pro tip: Natural wallpapers are trending and are a beautiful way to add luxury to an interior while staying in a safe, muted colour range. When you’re marrying paint and wallpaper, find a common colour link to ensure the two work together.