‘We’re Moving Out of This Ikea Era’ – Sourcing Journal


Everything old is new again. That’s the word from style forecasters at Fashion Snoops and Sherwin Williams who shared top home trends for 2023 at the recent High Point Market home furnishings trade show in North Carolina. Jaye Mize, vice president of creative at Fashion Snoops, and Sue Walden, director of color marketing at Sherwin-Williams, outlined some of the biggest shifts for the home space, and what’s influencing these trends.

According to Mize and Walden, here are four of the biggest style trends slated to shape the home goods industry in the coming year.

Return of Tradition

Nostalgia has had a major influence on the home over the past two years as consumers long for a time of comfort and familiarity in the midst of the uncertainty of the pandemic. And that push has led to a resurgence of traditional furnishings styles.

“We’re seeing a really big return to tradition and traditional furniture,” Mize said. “And one of the reasons we’re seeing this is the quality conversation. We remember from a nostalgic level our grandmother’s funiture that was passed down to our mothers, who passed it down to us. A lot of people have those heirloom pieces that represent quality.”

Mize said young millennials and Gen Z have embraced the value of quality furnishings, and traditional styles and antique or vintage pieces play into that.

“We’re moving out of this Ikea era of cheaper furnishings,” she said. “With younger generations, they’re pushing us to change that and move into areas of quality—we’re redefining what traditional means.”

Cream and the New Neutrals

That sense of nostalgia and a longing for comfort in the home carries over to color, as well. And particularly in the neutral palette, warmer, more natural shades are returning to prominence.

“We’re seeing a huge re-shift toward whites and creams, particularly for spring 2023,” Mize said. “We’re also seeing a lot of these beautiful pinky hues and pinky beiges—it creates this calming sensibility in the home, and it’s also nostalgic and has that familiar feeling to it.”

Sherwin-Williams’ color of the year, Redend Point (SW 9081).

Sherwin Williams

Sherwin-Williams’ color of the year, Redend Point (SW 9081) perfectly illustrates this trend. A soft, pink-cast beige, Redend Point represents a warming of the neutral palette that recalls color trends of the past.

“From a directional standpoint, what we’re seeing is a shift away from gray as neutrals are being reinterpreted,” Walden said. “The definition of a neutral is changing and this is opening up a post-pandemic discussion of natural colors. We’re seeking stability through color as we look inward and seek to create interior spaces that feel safe and secure.”

Nurturing Nature

The home industry often takes inspiration from the natural world, and that influence continues to permeate trends for the coming year. Flowers play a big role in that connection to nature in patterns and prints on upholstery and other home goods.

“We’re seeing everything coming into bloom,” Mize said. “Florals are back in a range of motifs, but with a more modern presence—something with a darker background.”

Mize said other botanical motifs are being reinterpreted by furnishings and textile makers to offer a new twist on classic patterns.

“We’re also seeing things that mimic nature, the rawness of nature,” she said. “Things like natural striations and woodgrain—these mimics of woodgrain in upholstery that almost act like a new stripe that give it a really organic feel.”

Sherwin-Williams highlights this natural influence in its Biome palette, which includes earthy tones like Rookwood Medium Brown, Evergreen Fog and Shiitake.

“Biome represents how interior trends are inviting nature into our homes through hues like muted greens and mushroom beiges,” Walden said. “This palette is all about preserving peace and balance. It pulls its inspiration from nature with colors that bring added serenity to rooms we associate with relaxation like a bedroom or library, because they feel restorative. These hues also pair beautifully with warmer wood tones and other nature-inspired materials like stone and natural tile.”

Water plays a big role in nature-inspired home trends for 2023, as well. Mize said the ocean, in particular, is having a huge influence on design shifts happening now and going forward for the home.

“Lots of watercolors, water and ocean tides—we call it ‘ocean core,’” she said. “And things that are reflective of the ocean are really important, too. The ocean in general has been one of the biggest inspirations for designers over the past year.”

Shiitake and Mount Etna are some of the Sherwin Williams colors illustrating nature’s influence in home trends.

Sherwin Williams

Mize said the pressures of the pandemic coupled with the hectic digital world we live in make these nature-inspired colors, patterns and styles so appealing to consumers.

“Anything that has an organic, free-flowing, peaceful vibe is key, because people want to chill,” she said. “We’re tired of being overstimulated.”

Sustainable Wellness

The merging of sustainability and wellness continues to be a major influence on the home industry, according to Mize. Driven by younger generations who prioritize sustainability and transparency about the origins of the products they use, this trend focuses on how products are made and how they impact our overall wellness.

“Particularly for home, the ideations of sustainability and wellness are merging, and I can’t really say that for any other categories other than beauty and home,” Mize said. “The seed-to-shelf movement happening now along with a lot of transparency is really key for consumers, particularly for younger generations. They want to know where their products are sourced, how are they made—they want the story and they’re much more sustainably minded.”

Mize said this trend presents in the way home goods are made, particularly eliminating the use of harmful chemicals.

“We’re seeing a slight shift away from the wrinkle-free and that sort of thing—we’re more aware of the harmful chemicals we’re surrounded by,” she said.

Instead, Mize said new technologies that are designed to make home goods better for our health will become more prevalent going forward.

“One of the things we’ve seen is an air filtration fabrication called a photocatalytic property,” she said. “They’re adding it to fabrics in window coverings and bedding, and it filters the air and gives your air a refresh, almost like plants do.”

And, of course, Gen Z consumer have their own spin on this trend, with wellness and sustainability merging with technology for a look that’s all their own.

“Younger generations are craving wellness in an almost ethereal way, so we’re seeing more shiny fabrications,” Mize said. “They’re really wanting things mimicking the metaverse and TikTok algorithms that have this otherworldly presence.”

Otherworldly or firmly grounded in nature, home trends for 2023 have one thing in common: They continue to point to a sense of recovery from a time of chaos and uncertainty.

“Consumers are craving to heal, and with that they’re also looking at more nature modalities to push that forward,” Mize said.