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Trend forecast: What's hot for new homes in 2018

11 January 2018

What will you be coveting for your home in the year ahead? Whether you’re planning a new build or simply looking to refresh your interiors with quality décor touches, we’ve uncovered the key colour trends, features and products which design experts say will dominate Kiwi homes this year.

It’s all about wabi-sabi

Forget hygge – one of the biggest interior design trends for 2018 is the move towards ‘wabi-sabi’, the ancient Japanese philosophy of finding beauty in imperfection. Wabi-sabi is all about simplicity, decluttering and authenticity. It can be best understood by a quote from American artist Leonard Koren: “Pare down the essence, but don’t remove the poetry”, which calls for us to be selective with our décor choices, and encourages buying less but better quality items.

To decorate your home with wabi-sabi in mind, opt for items such as imperfectly handmade ceramics or hand-carved wooden bowls and avoid mass-produced products where possible. Add earth and muted grey tones to your walls using either paint or wallpaper, and select organic materials such as linen and wool for your bedding. The ultimate rule of thumb is simple: if it doesn’t move you or add to the beauty of your home, don’t buy it.

Colour, colour, colour

A palette of tonal reds take centre stage in 2018 as the key colours for the year. Introduce shades of red, terracotta, burnished red, tangerine and coral around your home by creating a focal wall or adding a statement piece of furniture. For a softer touch, add decorative pillows on your couch or a textured throw across your bed in one of the key shades to bring a sense of vibrancy and enhance the feeling of newness in your home.

Lavender is another key colour this year. Inspired by fashion runway collections and Pantone’s Colour of The Year – Ultra Violet, lavender is making its way into New Zealand homes as an unexpected power colour. Lavender is easy to work into interior spaces because it pairs well with neutrals such as cream, grey, taupe and white. Try painting an accent door to create interest, add a lavender rug to lighten up a dull room or opt for a statement hall table in your home’s entranceway.

The new metallic

After dominating décor trends for the past two years, copper and rose gold will move off in 2018 and give way to silver. Silver is the metallic of the moment and it’s all about high shine. For those looking to make a bold statement in their homes, metallic ceilings are a dynamic way to introduce the trendy hue into a room. Also have a play with silver tiles, wallpaper or metallic paint to give bathrooms or kitchens a bright and luxurious lift.

Metallics generally work best when used sparingly, so think about pairing a silver coffee table to a dark toned couch in blue or charcoal. If you’re on a tight budget, another less expensive option is to use decorative items such as mirrors, sculptures or ornaments to your transform your space.

Say hello to curved furniture

Curved sofas are one of the biggest game-changers for your lounge in the year ahead. The Milan Furniture Fair showcased curved and plump shapes, where the emphasis is on comfort and being nurtured. Expect to see low-slung curved couches in deep jewel tones and bright pops of colour filtering into homes. Be sure to select opulent fabrics such as velvet and velour to add further richness to the look. This trend will filter down to statement chairs such as formal dining room chairs and bar stools. If you want to embrace the trend without it taking over your home, invest in one statement item such as a curved wingback chair to update your lounge or bedroom.

The new kitchen cool

All-black kitchens take centre stage in 2018, as we see the dark shade applied across metal, wood and stone. This comes through in large appliances too, such as refrigerators, dishwashers, cooktops and microwaves. Forget white options and go for black and black stainless steel versions instead. For great contrast, introduce pops of colours to your all-black kitchen with indoor plants and herbs. Or if you prefer more classic look, use subtle white accents to break the all-black look, but limit yourself to no more than three elements.

In keeping with the all-black trend, silver stainless-steel and white sinks are stepping aside to grey granite and concrete sinks. Marble remains popular for kitchens, but the look will be far more subtle than what we saw in 2017.

Image (right): Brodie & Nikki Retallick's black and white kitchen 

Bathrooms – from utilitarian to vibrant space

Bold pops of colour has in recent years been reserved for every room of the home except the bathroom – but not anymore. This year expect to see a move toward splashes of colour in bathrooms, particularly in shades of dark green, teal, sapphire blue, plum and charcoal. No longer reserved for feature splashbacks, these colours will be applied in full to floors, basins and toilets. A micro-trend in bathrooms sees the re-emergence of geometric or printed tiles, which can be used to enrich blank walls with structural elements to add dimension and richness to the space.

In keeping with last year’s trends, greenery in bathrooms will continue to feature strongly well into 2018. It’s all about merging interior and exterior environments into one seamless space. For a cost-effective treat, consider adding heat and moisture-loving plant such as ferns or aloe vera to your bathroom.