Home Décor Trends for 2012

Home Décor Trends for 2012

As 2012 gets underway, several decorating trends are coming through loud and clear. Making both cost-conscious and environmentally mindful choices are perhaps the most prevalent developments. Of course the reuse, refurbish, recycle mantra is not new, so here are a few ways to put a Year of the Dragon spin on things!

The use of woven fabrics for upholstered pieces is very popular this year. Both bold and subtle textured fabrics appear to be edging out prints, stripes, and plaids. Natural fibers are in demand, such as jute, bamboo, silk, wool, cotton, and eucalyptus. Reclaimed textiles, from jeans, wool coats, sweaters, and draperies are turning up in area rugs, table runners, and window treatments.

Aside from textiles, the rich textures of natural wood, and stone accents are also being used more frequently. The sleek look and feel of glass and metal is also quite noticeable this year. For example, textures are often combined in home accents, such as a rich brown cypress wood lamp base, topped with an over-sized metallic shade.

Subtle Colors
The color palette for 2012 is a subdued mix of neutral tones of cream, beige, taupe, slate, and gray. Black and white is being added along with pops of color in jewel tones, such an amethyst, emerald, and turquoise. Gold, silver, bronze, and copper are also noticeable this year. When paired with this year’s neutral color choices, these metallic accents create drama, elegance, and timelessness.

Bold Appliances
Could it be that the stainless steel appliance craze of the 90’s has finally met its match? Lately it is not uncommon to see new kitchens outfitted with stoves, dishwashers, microwaves and refrigerators in eye-popping shades of Flamingo-pink, Fire Engine-red, Pumpkin-orange, Canary-yellow, or Cobalt-blue. Some are retro, some are space age contemporary, but one thing is for sure, they are all great attention-getters!

Downsizing and Refurbishing
Here is a recent trend that reflects our desire to reduce the size of our carbon footprint. These days, we are choosing smaller pieces of furniture. We are favoring items with sleeker design and choosing individual arrangements for intimate gatherings rather than the over-sized, conversation pit sectionals that were once en vogue. Many homeowners are also trading their giant cookie-cutter homes for smaller spaces with more character, downsizing both their square footage and their mortgage loans.

Furniture purchases at antique, consignment, thrift, and second hand shops is also on the rise. This trend could reflect the economic times, however, many interpret this tendency as recognition of the superior quality of much of the older furniture.

The floor covering industry is seeing a renaissance thanks to the current demand for environmentally sustainable products. Synthetic carpeting and its toxic emissions are being shoved into oblivion by new manufacturing innovations, such as corn sugar and postconsumer food and beverage containers.

Traditional hardwood floors are being replaced by reclaimed river wood, recycled wine barrels, cork, and bamboo. Cork is relatively new as a flooring choice. It is desirable because of its natural antimicrobial and antibacterial properties and ability to absorb sound and impact.

Ruffles and Birds
Another 2012 trend in home decorating is the use of ruffles. News flash-ruffles aren’t just for little girl’s rooms and bed skirts! Ruffled and ruched home furnishings are everywhere, from bedspreads to throw pillows, and window treatments.

As for 2012 home accents, you’d have to be a birdbrain not to notice all of the recent home décor that features our feathered friends. Some are in color blocked, stylized form while others are depicted realistically in all of their full Audubonesque glory. Our wise friends from the 1970’s are also back, just Google “owl pillows” if you don’t believe it!

Wall Murals
Wall murals are also making a comeback this year. They are an excellent way to add oomph and drama, or designate a focal point. The good news is that you will not need to hire a mural artist. There are scores of fun, new wallpaper murals – there are even moveable and reusable ones!

About the Author:
Lisa Andree writes for the popular home financing blog, Mortgage-Rate-Review, covering trends in the mortgage and real estate markets.


  1. one
    Comment by Petra@Beach Decor: Mar 4, 2012 at 7:33 PM

    I believe that less is always better. A clean, clear home interior with some bold accents can look stunning. Personally I am not so sure about the ruffles you mention, I have never been a fan of them. But I love the idea about Wall Murals, especially of tropical beaches or other beach themed photographs. Great tips here, thanks!

  2. two
    Comment by Marlo@Kids Dentist: Mar 6, 2012 at 4:19 AM

    Thanks for the update. I believe the simple but elegant textile is still the trend on home decors this year except for the colors. We had an office renovation and the concept was kind of metallic but still eye-friendly and not too formal.

  3. three
    Comment by Teyona @ Park City Real Estate: Mar 13, 2012 at 2:10 AM

    I like the recent trend in home decoration, the minimalistic approach in architecture and interior design. Thanks for the tips in reuse,recycle and refurbish mantra.

  4. four
    Comment by Adrien@pallet tracking: Mar 15, 2012 at 12:05 PM

    Subtle colors is definitely going to be a trend in 2012, and it’s my personal trend every year! It’s a safe bet! Bright colors get out of trend so fast!

  5. five
    Comment by lampard@home windows: Mar 16, 2012 at 5:28 AM

    Simplicity always shines. Make your home as simple as much you can.

  6. six
    Comment by Bernard: Mar 16, 2012 at 9:08 AM

    Natural materials are definitely trending these days. They help to create a calm and relaxing feel in a room. Natural stone floor tiles in your bathroom not only look great but tend to have a warmer feel. They are also a lot easier to work with when thinking about decorating.

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