Tag Archives | design trends

Tufting: Traditional or Modern?

Tufting is more popular than ever in furniture right now, and we liked the way that these two mini-rooms (photographed in our most recent photo shoot) highlight the way that, even though it still looks great in a traditional room, it is certainly no longer limited to that.


This modern sofa has clean lines and square cushions. The button tufting is minimal and less inset, yet adds interesting detail and makes a great design statement!Tufting used to be seen in more traditional spaces, but now it's perfectly at home in modern spaces too.


The traditional *settee has the deeper diamond tufting typically expected on a traditional piece, but with a great updated silhouette that says today!
This fun settee is a perfect example of tufting on an updated traditional piece.

When using tufted furniture, try to limit the number of pieces in one room.

Tufting is intended to add unique style and make a design statement, so if you have too many tufted pieces in one space they can get lost in the shuffle.


Tribal Touches for Your Home

Accessories and accent pieces are the easiest way to inject life and personality into your space.  Just what that personality is is up to you.  Today’s topic of interest is Tribal accents and accessories that can liven up a space.  This works especially well in neutral spaces, because color is not one of the hallmarks of tribal design.  Tribal designs are more about material, texture, and patterns.

Natural motif pillows

These pillows have a natural motif, almost like a leaf, flower, or acorn, that has been enlarged and simplified, creating a graphic quality.  The colors are neutral and high contrast.  Tribal designs will have simple, neutral color palettes in warm, earthy colors.  The designs focus more on the patterns rather than a busy color story.

Woven lamp

This lamp also has a simple palette, but the shade is woven with two different grass-like materials, giving it a subtle texture.  Also, the base is simple but highly distressed with a carved and rasped quality.  The finish is dull and the color is deep wood, also indicative of a tribal design.

Adding accents and accessories with a consistent design flair will add interest to your home while keeping your look cohesive.  Look for similar characteristics of design instead of trying to match everything exactly.  This will add more interest and make you the envy of all your design-conscious friends and visitors!

Integrate the High Point Trends

As our regular readers will already know, Fridays are a day to talk about integrating design trends into real world, real life spaces for our clients in Minnesota and beyond.  Today, we will explore the overall trends shown at High Point market in April 2011 and how they can be integrated into current spaces.

1. Softer, Warmer Contemporary

People have often viewed contemporary furnishings and design as cold, distant, uncomfortable, and unwelcoming.  The Midwest in particular has been slow to adopt some of the more popular contemporary trends on the coasts.  But this year’s contemporary focuses on softening the harsh lines.  Designs are still clean and monochromatic (hallmarks of contemporary design).  The lines of the furniture emphasis a form that follows function instead of being purely decorative.  But contemporary has gotten a little squidgy around the edges.  Padded headboards in clean linen looks, a warmer gray and cream color scheme, and soft driftwood tones with mild distressing take the edge off contemporary and make these pieces easier to incorporate into a more transitional home decor.  Consider adding a contemporary piece done in a warm wood tone to update a country or lodge look. 

2. Coastal Cottage

Driftwood and linen translate well from a warmer contemporary to an east coast cottage look that is breezy and casual while maintaining more traditional design details.  Turned or cabriole legs, cotton fabrics, toile, lighter wood tones, and woven grasses and reeds complement more formal traditional looks.  A large design challenge for those who appreciate more formal furniture design has been the advent of the great room in homes.  Formal living rooms are becoming things of the past, and traditional details on a more casual piece can accomplish a traditional look without feeling too formal for a family living space.

3. Classic Greek

Just like in fashion design, interior design trends work cyclically.  It has been quite awhile since we have seen a Greek Revival in interior design.  Fluted carved wood, columns, and classic greek chair lines were big at High Point this year.  This trend works well with traditional and contemporary designs.  Consider using a more formal fabric on a classic Greek chair for a traditional space or a funky color or design for a more contemporary space.  Unexpected combinations will add interest to your space.

4. Gray

Gray continues to be a large trend in furniture.  Taking the place of a chocolate brown as the ‘new neutral,’ gray is a warmer shade than in the past.  More mushroom grays with brown undertones are popular, instead of the cool blue grays of the early 1980’s.  Gray works as a neutral on many levels and can conteract a chocolate brown in a space lightening up a largely neutral palette.

As we progress through the next few months, we will talk about more specific trends, but these general directions were hallmarks of the High Point Furniture Market this season.  Look for pieces coming to stores in the next few months to follow these general design trends.


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