7 Interior Design Trends 2021: What’s In?

Wed Oct 20 2021

Sunflower yellow kitchen cabinets and chairs

The pandemic forced many of us to stay home more than we usually would, and the interior design trends of 2021 reflect that. People want to create comfortable living spaces that also incorporate the realities of their new work-from-home lifestyle, according to many of the experts we asked. Here are seven of their interior design tips for staying on trend this year.

1. Japandi

A japandi-style kitchen with wooden cabinets and island and muted tones

Japandi combines a Japanese esthetic with Scandinavian coziness and functionality.

Because many of us are still working and living in one space, minimalist designs will stay popular, according to Tom Lawrence-Levy of Natural Astehtik ( @naturalasthetik ): “I really feel like in 2021 we’ll continue seeing a lot of wabi-sabi and Japandi (Japanese-Scandinavian fusion) influence.”

Japandi style combines Japanese minimalism with Scandinavian functionality, and tends to be warm and comforting. This means a design focus on natural elements﹘think lot of woods and muted color palettes﹘and cozy comfort.

2. Cheerful Colors

Image of a living room with a bright yellow wall

Adding a pop of color, like the bright yellow wall in this living room, can lift your mood.

You likely won’t see people opting to do a modern kitchen in all gray right now. People are looking to brighten their moods by using color in the spaces they spend the most time.

“Colors indeed make us feel happy and positive. Recently, we are seeing more cheerful hues dominating the home,” says Emily Perez of Kitchen Infinity ( @kitchen_infinity ). “Combinations of …yellow and gray and shades of blue and green are also trending in a big way.” Luckily, adding a fresh coat of paint is an easy and inexpensive way to redecorate your home and take part in this interior design trend.

3. Light and Breezy Fabrics

A living room with pale gray transparent curtains, a velvet gray couch, and bright velvet throw pillows

The light curtains in the living room pair compliment the velvet of the couch.

What your skin touches and your eyes see can greatly affect your mood. This is where fabric comes into play for design trends this year. According to Andra DelMonico of Trendey , “Because people are spending more time at home, they are paying closer attention to the fabrics and materials in their homes. Popular fabrics in 2021 are those that are light and breezy.”

Ideally, fabrics should have texture but still be soft to the touch. Even better, the texture should be visible and incorporate natural elements such as floral patterns. DelMonico says the goal is to create “visual interest in the room while adding a feeling of coziness.”

4. Maximalism

A a maximalist living room with multiple colored rugs, striped curtains, and several wall hangings

Maximalism embraces more of everything, including colors and patterns.

Andre Kazimierski of Improovy ( @improovyit ) says he’s seeing minimalist designs being converted into maximalist designs. “Maximalism is seen through having a lot of decor, colorful paint, and an overall unique design.” He believes that minimalism popularity was driven by influencer trends but now people are “looking for ways to express their individualism and creativity.”

One way to embrace maximalism and still have your room look organized is to pick just a few colors to use for emphasis. Repeat these colors throughout your space to create cohesion.

5. Mix-and-Match Kitchens

A kitchen with stainless steel appliances and gold metal light fixtures

This kitchen mixes stainless steel appliances with gold light fixtures.

Adam Graham of Fixr.com ( @fixr_com ) tells us, “There is a move away from installing only stainless steel, but instead having different metal appliances and finishes, such as a sunset bronze refrigerator for a cost of anywhere between $1,000 and $12,000, mixed with different finishes for sinks, faucets, cabinet hardware, and lighting fixtures.” This combined with new, vibrant color schemes on your walls gives your kitchen a complete, modern overhaul.

However, much like with maximalism, you risk a sense of disorganization if you mix and match too much. Your better option is to pick a main finish and add one or two complementary ones as accents.You could try this by keeping your big-ticket appliances, like your refrigerator and stove, but switching out your cabinet hardware. That’s just one of several easy DIY projects you can do when stuck at home.

6. Vintage 70s Look

A living room with retro leather chairs, wood paneled floors, and colorful mod vases

Design elements from the 1970s are great in small doses.

While you might not normally seek out an avocado green refrigerator, don’t rule out the color schemes and styles of the 1970s. Mark Cutler and Nichole Schulze of Cutler Schulze believe there are a lot of reasons the 70’s are making a comeback.

The biggest factor is “ongoing supply chain issues” that make it difficult for people to buy new. This has people “turning to local sources like vintage stores and swap meets to redecorate.” The vintage 70s look is a great way to add character to your home, mixing a bit of the old with a bit of the new (such as appliances).

7. Timeless Designs Elements

A living room with a black wall, black couch, and bold pink, textured accent rug and throw pillow

Timeless design elements help make your home your own.

Many of us are seeing less value in following the latest trends and more value in making a home reflect who we are. “Timeless design elements encompass statements of personal identity,” according to Amanda Eirich of Brook Furniture Rental ( @bfr_brookfurniturerental ). “It’s always appropriate to curate your home with the items that you are drawn to and love.”

Eirich emphasizes that it’s okay to experiment until you find something you love. Play with lighting to improve your mood and freshen up a room. Look for centerpieces that mean something to you, like a dining room table that invites people to sit and talk. It’s all about finding pieces that speak to you that won’t lose their appeal when the next trend comes around.