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Decor and lifestyle trends are usually sparked by lifestyle, or local or global moods or attitudes. Given the economic and political noise emanating from almost everywhere, no surprise that there are innumerable trends.


Krystal-Lee Terblanche, Olalala Interiors, gives the run-down on elements heading for the door. “We’re seeing far less beaten metallics, mirrored furniture, industrial accents, and Boho.”

She says white spaces, aka the very clean Scandi look, are set to be traded in for bold warm colours and confident spaces – a mix of modern and traditional.

Likewise minimalism. “It has its place for city millennials, but it’s not practical with family, pets, kids and so on. And PS, the days of the Edison bulb are over.”


Lots. Terblanche points out a handful of her favourites. “There’s a new wave of abstract energy, with bold geometrics, hand-drawn sketches, and playful blocks of colour – this look is all about expressing personality in our homes, evoking emotion and creating a mood.

“There’s also a leaning towards ‘honest comforts’, a combination of comforting textures, calming colours and decorative details. The creation of a personal sanctuary, a low-maintenance look with weathered woods, faded tones and time-worn finishes.”

She says “structured stability” as a trend is evolving from the 2019 Nordic Retreat trend, the purpose of which was to create a safe inviting space in which to rest and regenerate. “This trend will see homeowners swopping bold and bright for soft and neutral – the sustainably conscious will latch on here.”

She sees continued growth of the soft tropics, perhaps more diluted with different colour pallets. Palm prints still rule, as is bringing nature into our homes. We’re responding to the practical benefits of bringing the outdoors in, drawn to the improved air quality, and feelings of relaxation and positivity. “An indoor tree can transform a room be it a space filler, pop of colour, or the introduction of a structural element. Vertical gardens, too, will be around for the next few seasons.”

There’s a nomadic trend lurking too, with a thread of unapologetic authenticity that’s warm and welcoming. “All our most-loved collectables and possessions perfectly curated into our living spaces. Think hand-dyed prints, pottery and terracotta, rich tones and rugged textures.”

And last season’s retro revival is evolving. Terblanche describes it as deco meets mid-century, with a certain flamboyancy, extravagant wallpapers, plush textiles, accent furniture with character, glossy marble and brass. Eclectic glamour.

There’s also a leaning towards “refined glamour”, where the glam has less sheen and is more sophisticated. “Luxury materials are used to create statement decorative details… velvet, marble, smoked glass, natural pearl, rounded furniture”.

Retro fusion, too, is an emerging trend – contemporary design pieces with clean lines. “This involves being creative with walls, giving them a retro vibe with paint techniques – painting ceilings or a geometric pattern such as half a triangle on one wall to create impact.”

For many, sustainability is a strong driver, timber from FSC (Forest Management Certification), knowing from where your flooring is sourced, is it renewable, reclaimed, natural, recyclable, are they accredited suppliers? Are those hides from a reputable, sustainable source? Using natural elements as a framework around which to develop spaces. “Sustainability sparks a fuller interest in, and appreciation of, nature, which motivates people to protect and preserve it.”

Colours, fabrics and wallpaper

Terblanche pinpoints grey, mustard, jewel tones, natural pearl, blush pinks, black and petrol blue as colours to watch. Velvet fabrics will reign supreme, with wallpapers being either bold (tropical leaves still up there) or iridescent. She says fibre-guard fabrics have come to the fore. “Think fabrics with high performance, excellent durability, optimum washability, easy to clean – fresh-looking fabric with stain-free technology. Consumers want low maintenance, child and pet friendly, and at the right price.”

And of course, local is still a massive driver. Source it, buy it, support it.

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