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2013, New and Improved

January 7, 2013


Above:  I designed this backsplash panel for a small condo kitchen using 5 shades of green, including Pantone’s colour for 2013, Emerald, see picture below.

Is it just me, or does the number 2013 look strange and futuristic?  I was one of those kids that loved The Jetson’s cartoon and dreamed about flying cars in the year 2000–can’t help but feel dissappointed!

It seems like we turned the corner from 1999 to 2000, yesterday.  We are already in the second decade of the 2000’s, the “nineties” are invoking nostalgia and, heaven help us, shoulder pads and big hair are back for some.

So, as is customary for this time of year, let’s take a look at what’s new and what’s improved.  Of course, this is from my point of view, based on trends that I see in my design work, what my clients are purchasing, publications, and websites such as Pinterest and Houzz.

On her birthday before Christmas, my daughter Jennifer and I saw the art exhibit, Napoleon, at the AGH.  It’s worth a look.

It’s always a treat to visit the AGH, see what they are selling at the gift shop, including their great selection of local art for sale and lease (love the large Richard Herman landscape http://www.richardhermanart.com/catalogue.html), pick up a gift, and have a snack at the cafe.

The exhibit is amazing, it is a thrill to see so many images of the iconic legend, and be inspired by the royal colours and classic Empire furniture designs.  I was moved to see one of Napoleon’s hats, it is in remarkable condition, and it isn’t difficult to imagine the man wearing it, felt almost like time travel.

The fabrics of the clothing and bedding were opulent, and again, in amazing condition. They made me want to add more luxurious materials to my home.

The regal blues, golds and reds in the paintings and artefacts are a reminder that rich colours are back. This year may be the time to cast off timidity and be bold with colour. Paint a room a saturated colour, such as the new emerald green.  Have a look at Pantone’s website for inspiration pictures and ways to use this colour.

If you aren’t ready to be that brave, you can always add new throw pillows to the sofa or bed.  Rearrange the bookshelves to make room for colourful vases and accessories. Browse Homesense, you will find some irresistible object in a bright new colour to bring home, and brighten up your world.

Here are some other small ways to update and improve your home, and give it a shot of 2013 chic:

  • Yellow gold and brass,  (brushed or satin finish) for cabinet knobs and handles, new lamps and light fixtures
  • Marble tile or art glass kitchen backsplash
  • Opulence: velvet, faux animal fur, patterns
  • Sparkle: crystal, silver, mercury glass, carved gold or silver leaf picture frames
  • Update picture frames.  Re-frame family pictures, add new pictures to replace outdated ones.
  • Replace small mats at entry doors, kitchen and bathrooms
  • Replace uninspiring larger area rugs
  • Remove wall to wall carpeting, and reduce flooring changes on the same level
  • Don’t be afraid to use hardwood throughout–even in the kitchen
  • Upgrade faucets
  • Plan to paint your front door a new colour in the spring.  Vow to be bolder, or darker–for classic drama, you can always go Black.
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