‘Dark and moody’ colors, spa tubs among 2019 home design trends | TribLIVE.com
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‘Dark and moody’ colors, spa tubs among 2019 home design trends

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Design experts say black kitchen cabinets are making a return in 2019.
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Home design professionsals say ‘destination’ bathtubs and wooden vanities are trending for 2019.

The home remodeling and design platform Houzz recently released its annual forecast, derived from conversations with industry experts as well as trends spotted among its 40 million monthly users. It offers a snapshot of what we might see in stores, living rooms and Instagram feeds this year.

We asked Houzz editor and writer Mitchell Parker to dig into this year’s projections.

So before you pick up that paintbrush, take a look at the colors and styles the pros say will be big in 2019.

The backsplash as a focal point. In 2019, home design professionals expect to see more full-height backsplashes that seamlessly stretch from the counter to the ceiling — behind floating shelves and range hoods — for a clean and cohesive look.

This dramatic statement can create the illusion of additional surface area.

Dark and moody colors throughout the home. Although Living Coral may be Pantone’s pick for color of the year, Houzz predicts homeowners will lean toward darker and moodier colors, such as navy and forest green. Color experts say it is a reaction to white and bright hues that dominated the design world for the last several years.

Parker also suspects that visual social networks such as Houzz and Instagram may have helped people gradually become more comfortable with experimenting with richer and darker colors.

Destination tubs. Bubble bath fans, rejoice. As bathrooms shift from private, utilitarian spaces to open, spa-like environments, homeowners are focused on the accoutrements, including free-standing tubs.

To achieve the look, bath aficionados are “stealing space from hall and bedroom closets” to expand the size of the room, Parker says, and creating built-in nooks to keep the tub out of the footpath of the shower, sink and toilet.

“Tuxedo” kitchens. Although white kitchens have long reigned supreme, professionals are seeing a return to black in kitchen cabinets, range hoods and island accents. The color can be edgy, chic and surprisingly practical for parents.

“If you’ve got a house with dogs and kids, scuff marks on white kitchen cabinets are going to be a big problem. Black paint hides a lot more,” Parker says. Expect to see a lot more “tuxedo” kitchens contrasting black with white walls, backsplashes and marble countertops.

Glass-and-steel room dividers. Thanks to the popularity of open floor plans, statement-making partitions will continue to flourish in the new year. Thin metal-and-glass doors and walls offer the illusion of open space while still providing privacy, light and noise mitigation.

The dividers can also be used to add visual interest and provide definition to a room, without making it feel cramped or closed off.

Kitchens that open to the outdoors. Fans of entertaining and cooking may want to consider expanding their kitchen area to the outdoors. Homeowners in warmer climates are transforming patios into extra seating areas, with durable rugs, cushions and fabrics.

Expect to see more kitchens completely open to decks and patios with collapsible doors and window walls in the coming year.

Wood vanities. Houzz experts saw a resurgence of unpainted wooden vanities in 2018, and they predict it will only be amplified in 2019, with a turn toward reclaimed and light wood. Visible grain and knots can add texture and visual interest to a space and work well in crisp, clean white bathrooms.

A four-wall accent color. Forget the accent wall; 2019 is all about the accent room. Instead of a bold-colored feature wall, homeowners are opting to paint all the walls — even the trim and molding — in one room a dramatic and bold color.

“Typically, I see this trend happening in smaller, somewhat private rooms, such as bedrooms, home offices, studies and media rooms — places where you want a comforting and relaxing vibe,” Parker says.

Popular color choices include navy and forest green.


Megan McDonough is a writer for the Philadelphia Inquirer.


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