Runway to Room
Stylish Designs for your Home Inspired by Fashion’s Hottest Looks
The first New York Fashion Week of 2018 saw designers from R13 to Tom Ford taking a page out of the ’80s-nostalgia-infused playbook of Stranger Things, embracing an underpinnings-out look and pushing vibrant shades, graphic prints and oversize accessories galore.
Intense feelings of outfit envy set in after you scroll through fashion show images. But clothing designers aren’t the only ones influenced by catwalk looks; hot colors and patterns find their way into the world of interiors too.
We asked local design authorities Darcy Kempton of Simply Stunning Spaces, Jules Wilson of Jules Wilson Design Studio and Kristin Lam of Kristin Lam Interiors for tips on bringing fashion trends into our home spaces.
Go Bold Or… The clear ’80s influence surfaced in graphic materials (hello, metallics and sequins) and prints—especially animal patterns—in shades from bright to neon. The “almighty inspiration piece” never fails, according to Darcy, so find that wallpaper, accent chair or artwork that encapsulates the look and spirit of the crazy print or material that captured your heart and pull colors and shapes from it to get a cohesive look.
“Or try the three-item-combination rule,” she adds. “Rugs, pillows and artwork are great ways to try a trend on.” Put all three together in a living room or bedroom where the sofa or bed might be more neutral. It’s an easily reversible, cost-effective way to try something new.
But make sure whatever else is in the room doesn’t compete with the items you’re adding.
“When bringing in a strong design, I like it when everything around it is really simple,” Jules shares. “The yellow zebra dress look [pictured left] only works when paired with neutral accents, otherwise the loud print and shade would be too much. Your space should be similarly composed.”
Striking Hues Models wore vibrant reds and shocking pinks together well. A room can too. “That red-and-pink dress [pictured top left] is a great inspiration to work from,” Darcy says. “It could definitely be brought in as artwork. I love huge, bold art that has lots of color—local artist Alejandro Rojas Salazar (alexandersalazarfineart.com for more info) has fantastic pieces in that vein.”
“There are so many easy ways to bring in color—a rug or throw and some inexpensive lamps can add a lot of personality,” Kristin says. “Or go all out and make a bright color the focal point of a room. I once did an all-red kitchen for a client, and it was so lively and captivating. You just have to be certain to ground the color with neutral elements. I tempered the red cabinetry with concrete flooring and neutral tiles.”
Petal Pushers Flowers in varying shades and patterns blossomed on complete ensembles—skirts and sweaters, pants and blouses, and dresses and shoes. Pattern mixing can be tricky, so don’t take on too many florals at once. Reupholster an old chair in one fabric and add a throw pillow in another or try the chair up against a floral accent wall, Darcy suggests.
“Bedding and drapes would be an awesome contrasting floral combo, so would pillows and a funky lampshade” Kristin says. “Some fun floral color combinations to mix are bright turquoise and green; coral, navy and yellow; and I think the red-and-pink combo would be amazing to throw in here.”
There isn’t that old granny garden feeling attached to florals anymore; they are fresh and graphic now, Jules says. “The contrasting floral patterns are revitalizing and chic and give you great opportunities to play with colors.”
Super-Size Shine The bigger, the better, it seems. To complement the clothing, designers paired garments with extra-long chandelier earrings, chunky necklaces, oversized shades and gleaming body jewelry.
Fixtures and decorative accessories have all been referred to as the jewelry of interior design. “Hardware is the perfect place for something oversized and fun,” Darcy says. “You can easily update a dated cabinet with some bling-y handles. I particularly love extra-large barn-door handles if you’re going for the super-sized look. Also, pendant lights are great home jewelry.”
“I’m really big on applying textured millwork in geometric shapes to walls right now,” Kristin says. “It’s a lovely way to embellish a room and looks especially nice behind a bed and painted a dark color. Additionally, consider adding a millwork screen to gain texture and depth while dividing the room visually without closing it off.”
Just as the statement-making earrings or a fantastic cuff can make an outfit, wow-factor home accents can take a space from great to fabulous.“I might use a statement faucet or light fixture that plays a supporting role that is essential to the overall look of a space, just like jewelry is to an outfit,” Jules admits.
Bow of the Ball Jumbo bows tied on shoulders, hips and lower backs upped the femininity factor on runways. This would be a fabulous trend to use with drapery tie-backs; it would be especially cute in a little girl’s room, Darcy says.
“Dining chair slips and pillow shams would both be great places to experiment with extra-large bows,” Kristin says. A super dramatic dining room would definitely benefit from some festive bows, the designer adds.
A Hint of Lace Straight out of the delicates drawer, tops with emphasized underwire, dresses that looked like gorgeous slips and oodles of lace were out in force—creating looks with an air of risqué romanticism.
“I love the idea of bringing this trend into the bedroom; intimate spaces are the perfect place to bring in design with a romantic vibe,” Darcy says. “A bedskirt and accent pillows in velvet, lace or dark silk would do the trick.”
“It could be really fun to do sexy bedding with silky tassels,” Kristin says. “Or a sheer fabric with gorgeous embroidery to get that feminine allure. Try silk scarves hanging over your lampshades for a more bohemian accent. I think that bohemian bedrooms really lend themselves to this look.”
Use a wallpaper that has the look of lace to easily get that boudoir-esque, cozy and sensual feel, Jules says.
Don’t do anything you can’t reverse, Darcy says.
Start small when you’re thinking big. Tiny, enclosed rooms are ideal areas to try something different. “Powder rooms are a great place to take a chance,” Darcy explains. “You don’t need to do much to make a big impact—put some removable wallpaper in there and go to town!”
“I love doing really fun and expressive powder bathrooms,” agrees Kristin. “Guests’ delighted reactions when they visit a dramatic powder room are so great. Right now, I’m hooked on shimmery metallic paints that are so fun to play with in that area.”
Make a statement just beyond the front door. “I adore the idea of having a big trend in the entryway or a sitting area off the entrance,” Jules says. “Somewhere that you really get exploded by it when you come into the space. It sets up a certain feeling of energy within your home.”
Dining rooms practically demand glamour and flare. “Drama is pretty much synonymous with dining rooms,” Kristin says. “You use them for special occasions and holiday gatherings, so it’s a space that already stands apart from the ordinary in your home—throw in some art-like wallpaper and you’re set.”
Dress private spaces such as the boudoir or home office in something unexpected—a fun light-up neon sign, daring pink-and-red artwork or a graphic wall covering, perhaps.
“We are finishing a project where we made a “Zen den” for our client with some truly fabulous cheetah carpeting,” Darcy shares. “It was perfect since it was an unexpected place that the homeowner felt confident doing something different in to express her individual style. A home office or guest bedroom would work equally well.”
Let kids be kids , and entertain requests for multicolored objects or off-the-wall pairings. “Children’s rooms are great for being crazy and fun,” Kristin says. “There is little risk with throwing really saturated tones in there! It’s always fun to get a great old piece from a repurposed furniture shop and paint it bright for an accent piece in a kid’s room.”