Four colors top designers' list for 2021
March 4, 2021
Four colors will dominate homes in 2021, according to five industry experts.
Shades that will "soothe and invigorate" will be well received, according to these trend spotters. They can be classified as warm neutrals, dramatic black, natural greens, and serene blues.
With shelter-in-place mandates still in effect in many areas the color experts agree transforming walls with color can have a huge effect on moods. Hues that provide healing and comfort, and instill confidence are expected to top the sales charts.
"Painting can be a low-cost, high-impact project that can improve more than the value of your home and might be a much-needed refresh in 2021," suggested Erika Woelfel, vice president of color at Behr Paint.
Within the "warm neutrals" category, interior designer Arianne Bellizaire favors taupe, which adds depth to a space while remaining neutral. "The rise of warm taupes can really be found in the contemporary-leaning, European designs we're seeing today," she says. "This organic trend is slowly creeping its way to the top of popular kitchen styles."
Because taupe's pink undertones flatter all skin tones, it is a natural choice for a bathroom refresh. Used elsewhere in the house, Bellizaire says taupe pairs "really well" with black and even some warm blue, green and gray shades.
Patrick O'Donnell, brand ambassador at Farrow & Ball, recommends Jitney, a muted, uplifting tone that is meant to evoke sandy beaches. This brown-based neutral would work well for a bedroom.
Woelfel says warm neutrals can energize a space without being overwhelming. She recommends using them in common spaces that need a little pick-me-up.
Warm neutrals will be used as "building blocks" between rooms to connect a palette, especially in gathering spaces, says Arianna Cesa, color marketing and development specialist at Benjamin Moore.
Designers say blacks are become more prevalent in rooms like kitchens and bathrooms that have a slightly more contemporary lean to them. "Like whites, blacks work with just about any other color in the spectrum," according to Bellizaire, who adds, "What was once too stark to play anything but a supporting role is now embraced as a way to bring sleek sophistication."
Sue Kim, color marketing manager at Krylon, would pair black with a chalky, but equally classic white. "Low-sheen and soft-touch finishes elevate the look," she says.
Green, a color that promotes coziness and relaxation, will remain popular, and is especially inviting in living rooms, according to O'Donnell. "Greens always exude calm, an essential state of mind for our busy lives," he says.
O'Donnell thinks more kitchens will feature the color, too. He suggests his company's 'Green Smoke' in Modern Eggshell as a timeless shade that works best below eye level on lower cabinets. "It can be combined with 'Shaded White' on your upper cupboards."
Green can be used as a peaceful backdrop in multifunctional rooms, according to Kim. "Symbolic of peace, 'Satin Jade' from Krylon is a perfect blue-green that reflects the renewing power of nature," she suggests, noting it can be paired with nurturing 'Satin Pistachio' to emphasize a healthy lifestyle at home.
Blue, a shade associated with calming, remains a popular choice.
In addition to having multiple shades to choose from, blues pair well with whites and greens for relaxing space, says Bellizaire. "I consider blues to be more timeless than trendy."
Bathrooms always look good in blue, according to O'Donnell. "It contrasts perfectly with classic white details most of us have in this room," she stated.
For those looking for a "wow" factor, Kim suggests if you're feeling inspired to stain an old wooden dresser, "try Minwax stain in Vintage Blue, its "color of the year."
The color experts discussed their top color trends in interviews with Dwell, "a platform for architects, designers, and enthusiasts to share and discover inspiring design."