Over many years as an Interior Designer, what would be 3 major shifts in consumer preferences during that time?
One thing that comes to mind right away is the shift from stain grade cabinets to paint grade cabinets. White kitchens are back! Clients are trending more towards lighter and brighter over the red / orangey tones of the last decade. Flooring has changed quite a bit with more clients opting for LVP (luxury vinyl plank) throughout their house. LVP has come so far, and is now super durable, easy to maintain and looks crazy real. Thirdly, quartz countertops are now becoming the standard. I rarely spec granite anymore. Quartz is so easy to maintain vs granite and the colors and patterns that are available now mimic everything from natural marble to exotic granites.
What are some future ideas and predictions going forward? Any new trends that may be taking place in 2018/19 and beyond?
Natural woods are very popular right now: hand scraped, wide plank barn board flooring as well as overtly distressed furniture pieces. What is also starting to come forward in design is more of a traditional style again. Details on everything and the use of rich jewel tones are hot right now along with warm metal tones (yes brass is back but in an updated way!).
What are some of the challenges to face in helping customers realize their dream renovation?
A lot of clients are afraid to trust their style intuition. They often fight between their heart and their brain over what they want. Often, they are trying to force themselves to change color palettes or styles from their last house and sometimes its way out of their comfort zone. I always tell clients to listen to their gut. Their home is their sanctuary and they need to feel comfortable, relaxed and love being home.
Are there certain types of renovations that tend to bring the greatest value to the selling price of a home?
Kitchens, Ensuites and basement developments are always the spaces people use the most, therefore increase the value of your home. Those rooms are the ones potential home buyers are looking at predominately because they know those are the areas they will spend the most time in.
How does one get ideas or inspiration to help guide them when considering renovation options?
I will often suggest that clients send me photos of homes, rooms, styles, products that they find on home décor sites. Often clients don't know what their style is, so if they can show me pictures of things they like, then I can usually understand them better. Visiting showhomes is also an excellent way to find inspiration and new ideas.