Never in our wildest dreams would we have expected last year to be our biggest ever in sales. But it was. Not only did we survive 2020, but like so many other businesses we came roaring back in 2021 because our customers were anxious to get out of the house and return to a sense of normalcy. They supported us daily by having lunch, buying new clothes, shopping for their home and choosing gifts for friends. Despite the supply chain issues, the rise in shipping rates and the shortage of employees, customers were ready to get out and shop after being isolated for so long. It was an incredibly challenging, gratifying, and exhausting year, all rolled into one.
Although I’m encouraged for 2022, the same challenges still hang over us as we go into the new year. Containers are still delayed; help is even harder to find, and prices continue to rise. However, after attending the spring gift market last week I am happy to report a beautiful season of new and exciting merchandise is on the horizon. The color gray is waning and lots of vibrant colors are back “in” for our world of fashion and decor. As much as I like Joanna Gaines, her use of gray for the last few years is getting very boring. Our world needs a new fixer upper with colors that lift us out of the doldrums and make us smile.
Bohemian is a big look this year along with modern/urban chic. Both trends are in retro colors that I have not seen since my mother switched out the kitchen appliances from avocado green to harvest gold in 1972. We will see more designs bringing in those muted nature colors such as leafy greens, bark browns and cloudy whites. But we are also seeing cornflower blue, yellow and pink that are prevalent in clothing, dishes, handbags, and furniture. Old school macrame plant hangers and wicker chairs are even back. But between you and me, I’m hoping disco balls don’t follow the trend.
Moroccan, Mid-Century Modern and Farmhouse continue to be strong, and we are most excited in seeing antiques making a comeback. For months now, supply-chain issues have been a big problem for anyone building a home, redecorating a room, or even shopping for a friend’s birthday. As a natural reaction to that, second-hand shopping has increased in popularity, especially when it comes to furniture and larger accessories. Many homeowners are focusing their money and attention on items more readily available and top designers around the world are showing us that nothing is more beautiful than mixing in vintage pieces with texture like soft velvets, woven furniture, and rugs. These elements help add warmth and create an inviting space. Wallpaper is also a big look again with metallics, farmyard toiles, exotic jungle palms and calico flower prints.
Surprisingly low-tech items are trending like paper calendars, stationery and writing implements such as pens and pencils. Humorous birthday cards, gift wrapping paper and journals are also strong. People are tired of a world filled with just high-tech gadgets and colorless rooms. Even the official Pantone Color of the Year went from Ultimate Gray in 2021 to this year’s Very Peri, a soft periwinkle encompassing blues with violet – red undertones.
At the end of the day, trends are about more than just a color or pattern du jour—they are a great reflection of where we are collectively as a society, what we are prioritizing, and what we are impacted by.