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Right on trend :  home design

Home designs have never been so popular and accessible, with home make-over television shows filling up our screens, décor catalogues arriving in the mail and home design magazines tempting us as we stand in line at the grocery store. 

And with the popularity of the Internet, new trends, ideas and concepts from all over the globe available to us with a click of the mouse, it is no wonder that home buyers are getting particularly choosey with what 'fads' they like and which they do not. 

But when house trends can change quicker than paint dries, it is nice to know that the ever-popular modern design is back with a vengeance for and looks as if it is here to stay. Homes are turning modern, with clean lines and a connection to the great outdoors. 
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And as our homes reflect our lives and society at wide, we can see these trends stemming from three things - society's turning more 'eco-friendly', a revolt against previous over-indulgence and generally younger demographics preparing to make home designs of their own. 

Originality at its best

That winning combination of traditional and modern is on the go once more. Home designs are filled with personalised, unique furnishings, built to order and reflecting your personality. People are investing more into their furniture, ensuring that it is high quality and will last for generations to come - this way, you can justify having that customised, one-of-a-kind piece because you know it will be used for years.

Top Design Concepts

Retro is back

Think sparse décor, hard surface floors, white walls and lots of glass. This gives a clean, simple look that is perfect for some more eclectic furnishings that may even verge on the eccentric if you are game enough. The idea is for your space to be an expression of you. 

Young buyers are purchasing mid-century modern homes and updating them. They are filling them with geometric patterns and big flower designs straight out of the 1950s and 1960s and combining them with Danish modern, IKEA, and modern American furniture. Amongst these home designs there are :
  • Open shelving in kitchens and bathrooms
  • Stainless steel appliances
  • Flat screens in kitchens and bathrooms
  • Smaller, more sensible bathrooms
  • Generous wardrobe space
These traditional homes are given a more modern edge with sleek finishes like exposed windows, flat cabinet doors, hard surfaces and industrial light fixtures. The combination of modern with vintage or rustic is working well and getting all the more popular.

Go Green

With the world eager to make some environmental changes, it is no wonder that this is being reflected within our homes. Anything 'green' is right on trend. Think materials and products that are re-purposed, re-used, re-claimed, recycled and sustainable. And to go right along with that are colours that reflect the natural elements of the sand, sea, forests, trees and skyline. Kitchens are getting inbuilt recycling areas.

Best Use Of Space

The influence of the economic downturn is even being seen in our home designs. More efficient use of space is right on trend, with smaller homes and less clutter being popular with buyers. The days of 'Look at my big flashy house' are on the way out, and 'Look how comfortable and liveable my home is' is the feel today. Formal living rooms and other rooms that were mostly for show are being transformed into useful spaces, such as studies and home offices. 

Getting Unconventional In The Kitchen

Moving along with the trend of all things green, engineered stones, recycled glass and soapstone are the newest materials to have home designers excited. Limestone, marble and concrete look organic (not to mention fantastic) and are building a big following. And if it is straight up modern that you are after, you can't go past the old favourite of stainless steel. Kitchen home designs are also getting more user-friendly, with more practicality and less over-the-top appliances. Pantries are getting more spacious and strangely enough, the kitchen in general is taking on the responsibility for 're-charging stations', where users can recharge their technology.

Top Design Furnishings

Practical Magic

Kitchens are becoming more useable and convenient, and so are bathrooms. Who really needs steam showers, heat lamps and the once popular but let's face it, a little extravagant, towel-warming racks. Going along with the green conscience, designers and decorators want more environmentally-friendly, cost-effective appliances and furnishings. Water-saving toilets, LED lighting, door-less showers and universal design are also popular in bathrooms.

Get In Touch With The Great Outdoors

More and more people want to have that connection between the indoors and the outdoors. Think large, floor-to-ceiling glass doors that brighten up and open a room. In smaller, inner-city apartments, large glass areas open up the interior to the outside, whether a yard or the skyline. People are investing more into their outdoor home designs, with patios, al fresco kitchens, gardens and swimming pools.

Tough Flooring

Going are the days of the wall-to-wall carpet, capturing all sorts of dirt, bugs and other allergens in our homes. Nowadays, the hard floor surfaces such as concrete, cork, stone, natural linoleum, wood and bamboo are beneath our feet. Bamboo especially is proving visually pleasing and eco-friendly, with the plant growing up to a foot per day. Baths are being fitted with ceramic tile.

Forget The Granite

Often called 'the builders' special', this well-known and well-loved material has been being used in home designs for more than twenty years, and is well on its way out. For a more unique, modern edge go for honed lime-stones, woods, concretes and quartz surfaces.

Colours And Textures: What's In And What's Out

In: White and off-white, soft pallets such as cream, sisal and raw wool, the combination of grey and taupe combined with white, natural bare look and dark stains on wood, splashes of colour - especially chocolate brown, plum and turquoise, grey, charcoal/grey paired with metallic like silver, brass and pewter blended with lavender, warm yellow, and dramatic white and black.

Out: Heavy reproductions, thick textured walls, red and gold.

So it's all things modern with an eco-friendly twist, when it comes to home designs. Our homes are our sanctuaries and a reflection of our personalities - so ensure that your chosen design fits around you, and provides you with a haven for rest, rejuvenation and entertaining. So what are you waiting for ... get designing!