At first, “interior design trends” can feel like an oxymoronic term. Decor doesn’t tend to undergo seasonal changes or flash-in-the-pan fads – furniture, textiles, art and wall coverings are too cumbersome, too expensive, too enduring to update frequently. When you design a room, as the saying goes, you need to learn to live with it. For a long time.
Yet the pendulum does swing, albeit over years and decades: 1970s shag-carpeted bohemianism gives way to 1980s glitzy excess, which gives way to 1990s palate-cleansing minimalism. So, as we enter 2023 – and finding interior solutions that are kind to both our sanity and the planet feels more important than ever – a sense of permanence is key to understanding which way the 2020s are headed. What will feel timeless or au courant for several years to come, and what is on its way to feeling dated?
Vogue decided to ask 13 interior designers to find out.
For starters: earth tones – which, thanks to their calming effects and associations with nature, increased in popularity during the pandemic years – still rule three years in. Shades of brown continue their decor dominance, while romantic mauve, Kathryn M Ireland and Jake Arnold predict, is the colour of the year to come. Meanwhile, multiple interior designers are opting for silver accents over gold or bronze. “Its captivating shine and texture lend an everyday sophistication to any space,” says Athena Calderone.
Certain design hallmarks from periods past are also making a return: after the dominance of the laid-back mid-century modern in the aughts and teens, for example, formal accents are now making a comeback. (As Robert D McKinley surmises, we’re all craving a little more sophistication after spending all that Covid-era time in sweatpants.) A little more controversially, perhaps, brutalism is back in too. Concrete floors anyone?
However, preface this all with a “neo”. 2023 doesn’t copy the past, but merely uses it as inspiration – our newfound interest in brutalism, for example, makes sure to infuse the aesthetic concept with warmer touches. “That’s the cyclical nature of trends I suppose – they always stem from someplace in history, allowing for modern interpretation,” Calderone observes.
What’s falling by the wayside? It seems the “modern farmhouse” aesthetic has hit its saturation point, as have beds adorned with a million pillows. (C’mon, it just ends up being a lot of clutter.) We can also wave goodbye to fast furniture – unsurprising given that more often than not, it just ends up discarded on a curb. A more environmentally conscious approach to interior design is always in.
Below, the top interior design trends to know in 2023, as well as what’s on its way out.
Earth Tones – Especially Browns and Pinks
“Mauve, peach, corals – I’m loving shades of pink right now. It feels feminine and a softer way to incorporate colour.” – Jake Arnold
“Pink and mauve are next year’s colours.” – Kathryn M Ireland
“Moody yet still earthy colour palettes feel new to me: rust brick, blue-green, creamy midnight blues.” – Erick Garcia, Maison Trouvaille
“The comeback of neoclassicism, with its focus on highly detailed and symmetrical lines, is a natural progression after the popularity of mid-century modern. The decor blends easily with other periods and styles, and focuses on elegance and sophistication, without being a conspicuous display of wealth.” – Timothy Corrigan
“I think after the pandemic and all its casual practicality there is a desire for formality and luxury.” – Robert D McKinley, Studio Robert McKinley
“Mosaic and terrazzo are trending strong instead of the full, book-matched slabs of marble that became ubiquitous in kitchens and baths during recent years.” – Timothy Corrigan
Paper and Fabric Lighting
“I am seeing a resurgence in lighting made from paper, fabric, or silk with a soft, ambient glow.” – Athena Calderone
Silver and Iron Accents
“Iron details inspired by Giacometti are in. We have and will continue to see iron details on furniture like side tables, coffee tables, consoles and benches. It will make a more prominent appearance in 2023 within decor – think candlesticks, mirrors, decorative bowls, et cetera.” – Jake Arnold
“Bronze, gold and copper have long been the design industry’s metals of choice and while their timeless allure will always be in favour, a new hue has galvanised our gaze: slick and polished silver. Its captivating shine and texture lend an everyday sophistication to any space.” – Athena Calderone, Eyeswoon
“Concrete floors will be returning in 2023. I am seeing all sorts of techniques when it comes to living with concrete, from raw to polished, and most recently I’ve become intrigued by a technique called microtopping.” – Colin King
“We’ve seen a lot of the Mario Bellini Camaleonda sofa, and while I have used it and loved it, it's possible we have seen too much.” – Jake Arnold
“Overlayered beds with multiple throw pillows and layers of blankets is a trend that is quickly going out of style. I love a thoughtful, minimal use of pillows and a bed beautifully draped for an elegant effortless sanctuary. Lush textural materiality is so much more interesting and sensual than a bed prohibited from being overly dressed. In any space, throw pillows should be minimal, selective and artful – less is more!” – Sarah Solis
“A trend that’s out is coloured stoves.” – Mark D Sikes
The Modern Farmhouse Aesthetic
“Modern farmhouse architecture and design had its moment and now feels very dated.” – Timothy Corrigan
“Fast furniture now leaves a bad taste in people’s mouths. The poor quality that makes the piece obsolete in months has led to record levels of furniture left on streets.” – Timothy Corrigan
Written by Elise Taylor
This article originally appeared on Vogue US and has been condensed