Which home decorating trends should you follow in 2012?

Baltimore design experts offer advice on items to display, store and throw away

  • Wallpaper is set to have a big impact this year with bold prints like this one from Graham & Brown.
Wallpaper is set to have a big impact this year with bold prints… (Malcolm Birkett, Baltimore…)
February 08, 2012|By John-John Williams IV, The Baltimore Sun

You may have collected your fair share of antler-inspired decor last fall. Or you might be thinking about finding a spot for that bold tangerine color of the year or even adding one of the woodland-themed pieces expected to be popular.

Stop thinking and start organizing. Blindly following home decor trends can result in a home that's an eclectic mess.

With spring cleaning right around the corner, now is the time to assess and redefine your style. That means knowing what hot items to display, what items to store because they're destined to come back into vogue, and what items to dump.

We asked some local decorating experts for their advice.

Stephanie Gamble, owner of The House Downtown

Rock it: "Colorwise, gray is still the neutral of the moment," says Gamble, whose shop is in Belvedere Square. "Almost everyone who walks in the store/studio, whether they are traditional, classic or modern, have gray on their radar." In addition to neutrals, Gamble likes burnt orange and chartreuse yellow "for pops of color." And don't forget blue. "A forever constant for us is blue, whether it be turquoise, navy or aqua."

Also: "Furniture with really clean lines is trending right now, upholstery with 'pin tuck' tufting, small-track arms on sofas and chairs," says Gamble, who also offers home design services with Stephanie Gamble Interiors. "Our clients are all about the details: exquisite tape trims on drapery and pillows, tack nail trims on the bottom of a sofa, top stitching on cushions, hand-applied finishes on case goods."

She also says wallpaper is back. "We're using them as accent walls, all over a room and especially in powder rooms. Our hands-down favorites are from Cole & Son and Manuel Canovas; their use of color and print is visionary."

Hang on to it: "The blue and brown combination that was hot a few years ago needs to take a rest, maybe it will resurrect in a decade or so?" Gamble says. "And as much as I love starburst mirrors, they are becoming a bit overdone and need to take a little vacation. Unless it is a true vintage piece — then hang it forever."

Toss it: Anything with formality attached to it. "People just don't live that way anymore. You can still have opulence and glamour without formality," Gamble says, suggesting that you let go of overly carved furniture, glossy cherry finish furniture and shiny brass finish on lighting and hardware. Also, "fussy balloon shades and swags on windows are very dated and should be laid to rest."

Sharona Gamliel and Ric Martinkus, co-owners of Paradiso

Rock it: "Midcentury modern is the desired style of the moment. Specifically, the vintage Danish Modern credenza is the important centerpiece of the living or dining room," says Gamliel, whose store is in Hampden. "The long, low credenza in teak, rosewood or walnut may hold the flat-screen TV and electronics or flatware and dinnerware, etc. A fabulous piece of art glass and a vintage modern table lamp with artwork above will complete the vignette."

Hang on to it: "Classic styles never go out of fashion for very long, so if you really love them, keep them," says Martinkus. "Whether it's a beautiful Arts and Crafts server or an Art Deco cedar chest, you can find a special place in your home where it can work well with modern design." He suggests updating and mixing in pieces. "An eclectic mix is great. Today, the Victorian highback chair can be updated with brilliant, modern fabrics to bring vitality to your space."

Toss it: "The large entertainment armoire may never return again. If you find it useful, repurpose with shelving for storage, or pass it on," Gamliel says.

Stephanie Bradshaw, owner of Bradshaw Styling

Rock it: "Wallpaper is coming back and is here to stay — especially anything that has metalic embellishment, big print or bold print. You can use it in many different ways," says Bradshaw. Another hit: Midcentury modern, which Bradshaw says is here to stay.

Hang on to it: "Everything is always back in style. It's how you repurpose it. Think of creative ways to display it. Maybe you have a small piece of pottery from your grandmother. Mix it in with some modern pieces for a cool vignette."

Toss it: Something that doesn't fit the scale of your room. "Get rid of that piece of furniture from before you got married. If you live in a small space, don't have a huge chair that takes over the room," Bradshaw says. "Purchase furniture that fits the scale of the room." Also, get rid of anything in pleather, or plastic leather. "I really don't use much of that," she says.

Gary Godbey, manager at Trohv

Rock it: Freshen up with some nautical pieces "The octopus is going to replace the bird," says the manager of the Hampden shop. "I just came back from Atlanta's Mart, a gift show with retailers from across the country, and the displays were light blue. And there were a lot of muted tones. There are a lot of products that are geared toward that."

Hang on to it: The rectangular coffee table. "It's classic and traditional, but you can always take a break from that," says Godbey. "I would suggest switching up to a large trunk, or leather or upholstered coffee table. Those are things that can easily be moved around your house. And you can incorporate them back in."

Also headed to the closet: the glass cloche, or bell jar. "It's been super-trendy, but I think it can be overused," he says. "Use it seasonally. Put a new plant in it in the spring. Or use it during the holiday season."

Toss it: The large entertainment center. "People tend to get these huge boxy things, and they are so distracting. Now, things are so modernized and they are sleeker," he says. "I would downsize and make it simpler and cleaner."

john-john.williams@baltsun.com

Baltimore Sun Articles
|
|
|
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.