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Traditional Design Is Back!

After two decades of Midcentury modern dominating the design universe, traditional is reemerging as a fresh and time-honored aesthetic.  While design styles always go through cycles, the advantage of traditional is that it’s a classic.  It is often the jumping off point for many other styles, so it blends easily when you are working towards a personally curated look.

Throughout history people are drawn to the familiar for security during uncertain times.  That may be partly responsible for the current resurgence, but there is also a new generation being exposed for the first time to these very livable interiors. Many homeowners were not in the audience to appreciate the classic rooms of Mario Buatta or Sister Parish.  Either way, this design movement is a refreshing way to incorporate planet-friendly elements with vintage and repurposed furnishings.  This is the look that will be known as the New-Traditional or Neo-Traditional for the next decade and beyond.  Sourcing favorites like 1st Dibs can provide unique character for these rooms.

But, just as today’s high waisted jeans are drastically different from 80’s Mom jeans, traditional design has evolved.  We are keeping the comfort and pleasing shapes while lifting the mood with lighter treatments of color, pattern and material.

Elements of the New Traditional or Neo-Traditional Style

Traditional style is timeless and pulls inspiration from the 18th and 19th century.

Architectural details like crown molding, ceiling beams and wood paneling add a determined but comforting mood when applied with a light touch.

Often traditional style will reference European decor in its detailings.   Featured here is one of our favorite homes showing traditional design with a French attitude. Formality can be taken up a notch or calmed down by the choice of furnishings. 

Rooms will often have a beautiful focal point like a stunning fireplace seen above, or even a mantel range hood as show in the kitchen below.

Neo-traditional is certainly not fussy.  In order to keep elements in check there will be a dash of modern with the European viewpoint.  Finely finished pieces can easily co-exist with natural and relaxed materials like linen, bamboo and rush. 

Beyond all visual combinations, the essence is comfort and easy living.

While the details may be finely crafted, the home will always respond to lifestyle demands.

 

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Photography by Shanna Wolf/S.Photography

Designing for Comfort

This is the season to prioritize comfort.  The evenings come early, and the morning air can be brutal.  Instead of just hunkering down, it’s the ideal time to celebrate home life with some extra attention to our well-being.  The Danish call this attitude Hygge, we call it the essence of home.

You can heighten the feeling of comfort in small ways or go big with a whole house refresh. Either way, here are some of our favorite ideas to up the cozy-factor this winter.

Natural Materials

Natural and authentic materials help us feel grounded. A stone fireplace, architectural beams, and natural wood tones are soothing.  Even accessories added to your kitchen counter or cocktail table will create a mood.  One of our favorite places for cozy touches is Summer Made in Lake Geneva.

Soft Furnishings

Simple additions go a long way to warm up a room.  Bulky knit throws, area rugs, toss pillows and overstuffed furniture all nurture the spirit. A good place to start your shopping for the Lake Geneva winter vibe is Paper Dolls Home Furnishings.

Warm Color & Texture

Natural colors tend to lean warmer and when combined with the texture of knotty wood paneling, the effect surrounds you in security.

Layering Pattern

Pattern fills a room,  and when layer upon layer is applied the comfort factor rises.  Upholstered headboards and lush layers of bedding compound the visual effect.

Quiet Moments

When everyone is forced to stay close to home, it pays off to have an at-home-retreat.  A quiet place where you can hang a do-not-disturb sign and enjoy a bath, sauna, or favorite chair with a good book.  You’ll love this list of book club favorites.

 

Fireplace Gatherings

Taking the chill off around the fireplace is a time honored tradition.  Arranging comfy furniture in a cluster around the hearth will facilitate warm and friendly conversations.

 

Inviting Spaces

Rooms that are pulled together are always more inviting.  Coordinated by color and designed with good circulation space, people will not hesitate to enter and put their feet up.

Scented Spaces

Engage all of the senses with a fragrance that will enhance memories.  Evergreen, bayberry, zesty orange, and cinnamon will keep you filled with warmth.

 

Embrace Friluftsliv – The Outdoor Extension of Hygge

 

Friluftsliv follows the Danish Hygge trends with the Norwegian cultural concept that promotes “free air life”.   Spending time outdoors during the winter season has been shown to improve physical and mental health and reduce stress.  Even if you’re not up for a long walk, a warm cup of cocoa on your screened porch will do wonders to reduce stress.

 

Daily Rituals

Relying on daily routine can give structure to otherwise endless days.  Light a candle, call a friend, have an afternoon tea  . . .   taking the time to tune into your sense of calm during the winter will provide a sense of balance throughout the season.

 

So, stopping fighting the urge to ward off winter and start working with it to enjoy the warmhearted memories you’re now creating.

 

 

We always love hearing from you and are happy to discuss your personal home projects.  Building a new home or remodeling can be an exciting adventure and our team of experts is available to answer your questions and guide you every step of the way.

262-245-9030

 

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