Luxe design focuses the art of living well offering affluent, sophisticated homeowners quality design and high end products. Most luxury products are out of the financial realm of possibility for the majority of the population, but there are ways to create the look of Luxe for less. The truth of the matter is that we all want to and strive to incorporate a little luxury into our lifestyles. With the trends as they have been, this is becoming more and more possible.
Of course you can ask 20 different designers what they think to be popular at the moment and heading into the next season, and they will each give you a different response. This is perhaps because there is no set rule and this is also, perhaps, because each designer has his own signature style, each reflective of a different way of living. Today’s general trends do tend to infuse or be influenced by luxury. Perhaps this is most evident in the recent Gatsby Style influence that seems to have a modern take on Mid-Century Modern as well as Art Deco where we saw the streamlined furniture with clean cut linear sophistication, decorative embellishments on furniture, fabrics and even walls coverings which include glass and crystal. Glass and crystal are everywhere as are metals, especially brass. The rich deep colors of that era are making a comeback as is inlayed wood.
When we think of luxury we think of not only rich colors, rich fabrics with wonderful textures such as deep velvets, but we think of fur. Fur is everywhere, and offers the quintessential pop of luxe, comfort and warmth. While some of these fur accessories are out of most price ranges, there are “copycat” products that are actually well made and visually appealing. Most of what is seen on the luxury end of home decor becomes available rather quickly to the general masses.
In addition to furs we are also seeing lots of leather, suede and even metallic leather. The metallic hues are bringing traditional leathers into a whole new light, giving the contemporary image an even more modern edge. The metallic hues also add a touch of glamour and sophistication. Concurrently, lace is making a grand comeback. We saw it first on the runways and we’re seeing it again in the shelter magazines. It’s time to dust off your grandmother’s heirloom table cloth. What’s old is new again!
Green remains widely popular these days. Not only the color, which we are seeing in every hue imaginable, but in the term – as in eco-friendly. As more and more manufacturers are looking to greener, more sustainable options to offer their clients and these luxe clients are delighted to have these options.
They are the perfect backdrop for the luxe fabrics, textures and furnishings. The problem with neutrals, for most people, is that most people are afraid to take a chance and step out of their comfort zone. Most neutrals, luxe and non, therefore become safe and boring. These are the neutrals designers don’t like. Neutrals are fabulous and work well when paired with contrasting items – items with color, style, zest, texture and pizzaz. Cremes, off-whites and beiges will never fall out of style but now we’re seeing more tones of grey, as one designer stated that “grey is the new beige” while yet another designer was quoted as saying that “lavender is the new grey!” Again, this goes to prove that there is no set rule in luxe or any kind of decor. Michael Boodro, Editor-in-Chief of ElleDecor told Curbed that there is “danger in beige” as he believes there is “the danger of going bland.”
Flowers, prints, patterns and texture are still everywhere. While some designers, believe that the new turn toward neutrals is a sort of rebellion against all the busyness of these patterns, others are still utilizing them and show no signs of slowing down. Florals and textures on furniture, fabrics and wallcoverings are still very popular. In addition to the florals, the luxe market is seeing a lot of chintz, and Chinoiserie which seems never to have really faded from interest.
Fine Art collection is a big area of interest in the luxe market. The most affluent are becoming collectors and gaining more and more expertise in this field and they are wanting to prove that they can own what their neighbors cannot – an exaggerated version of trying to keep up with the Joneses.
Something all designers seem to agree on, as does Boodro, is that metals are big at the moment and that brass is “the metal of the moment.” We are seeing brass everywhere from small fixtures, to lighting to furnishings. Brass, and all hand finished metals bring a luxurious, clean, rich and sturdy look to your space.
Lacquer, gilding, and inlay are also seeing renewed a renewed presence in furniture and on walls with their elaborate and rich hues and details. These perhaps are all synonymous with the term luxe. Lacquered walls and furniture have a highly distinguished presence in a space. Gilding automatically elevates the mundane to the sublime. Inlays offer immediate opulence. Luxe is, after all about lavish and opulent, indulgence and extravagance!
Bespoke is the ultimate synonym to luxe. Anything that can be tailor made to fit one’s style, needs, and lifestyle is bespoke. Bespoke separates the luxurious from the masses.
Let’s get started with some styling inspiration from Urban Outfitters, a brand that offers an interesting array of wall-mounted shelving options. Many of them celebrate the best of geo style. Below we see a trio of shelving solutions, including the Bryn Mountain Display Shelf, pictured at the top right of the photo. Note how each of these shelves holds “like items,“ such as rocks, jewelry and other natural wonders. The styling of this Geo Triangle Shelf proves there’s power in empty space. You may be tempted to fill every square inch of your decorative shelving, but remember that sometimes less is more.
We now turn to top design bloggers such as Ashley Rose of Sugar & Cloth, who has decorated her kitchen shelving with an array of pastel dishware. Don’t be afraid to mix function and style when it comes to your decorative shelves. Put useful items on display, but arrange them artfully. If the shelving is purely decorative, choose pieces carefully. Be selective, as this gives your shelves a curated, artful look, as shown by this DIY hoop shelf from A Beautiful Mess.