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Style at Home: Embracing the Charm of New Traditional Design

CEO Khai Intela
New traditional design is gaining popularity among new generations at an unprecedented rate, and as a fan of this timeless style, I couldn't be more thrilled. It begs the question: "Why now?" In times of...

New traditional design is gaining popularity among new generations at an unprecedented rate, and as a fan of this timeless style, I couldn't be more thrilled. It begs the question: "Why now?" In times of uncertainty, change, and stress, we find ourselves seeking solace in various ways.

Nostalgia is one such coping mechanism. We yearn for simpler times and reminisce through rose-colored glasses. Our brains form connections with places, objects, and scents that provide comfort and a sense of tranquility. In the midst of the current historic and uncomfortable event, many of us long for days gone by and seek comfort and tradition in our everyday lives. Additionally, with ample time spent at home, we are inclined to embark on house projects to keep ourselves occupied.

Traditional pieces have distinct visual markers that bring back warm fuzzy feelings.

Traditional pieces have distinct visual markers that bring back warm fuzzy feelings.

The new traditional style goes by different names, such as grandmillennial, modern vintage, and neo-traditional, but they all revolve around the idea of blending the old with the new (and perhaps adding a splash of something blue). With a few simple changes, a traditional heirloom piece can be transformed into something "new." A vintage daybed can become a showstopper with the addition of a new cushion. A hand-me-down cabinet can be revitalized with a geometric ginger jar arrangement, and a seemingly outdated high-back sofa can be given a fresh lease of life with a simple reupholster.

Traditional pieces possess distinct visual markers that invoke feelings of warmth and nostalgia. For instance, secretary desks crafted from wood have oscillated in and out of style countless times, yet they have always held a special place in my heart. Is there anything more enchanting than an antique writing desk, even if it serves as a cozy corner for your laptop? Growing up surrounded by beautiful and dramatic pieces instilled in me an appreciation for their allure. While the new interpretation of these pieces allows for subtle updates, their overall impact remains unchanged, infusing today's spaces with that same magical charm.

Decorators, designers, and home design enthusiasts have realized the importance of color and textiles in bringing warmth and safety to a room, as opposed to the starkness of modern decor.

Decorators, designers, and home design enthusiasts have realized the importance of color and textiles in bringing warmth and safety to a room.

Another reason for the resurgence of new traditional decor is the captivating and playful use of color, pattern, and texture. Amidst the pandemic, homeowners are revamping their spaces with a shift in mindset. Rather than stripping walls of the outdated floral wallpaper from the '70s, people are opting for new batik or shibori prints. Decorators, designers, and home design enthusiasts have come to realize that they crave the warmth and sense of security that color and textiles bring, as opposed to the cold austerity of modern decor. Patterned window treatments, furniture skirts, throw pillows, and art add a remarkable level of comfort to any home. The prolonged time spent in our dwellings has made everyone aware that tasteful maximalism can result in maximum comfort.

While we are all adapting to the "new normal," it brings me great joy to witness the growing love for new traditional decor. I am excited to welcome newcomers into the enchanting world of interior design and eagerly anticipate the fresh perspectives they will bring to the New Traditional aesthetic. Until next time, happy decorating!

(Adapted from nellhills.com. Katie Laughridge is the owner of Kansas City's interior design destination, Nell Hill's. For more information, contact Katie at [email protected].)

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