3D Library, Interior Design, Professional

2020 Interior Design Trends

The maximalist interior of the Mondrian Doha Hotel's roof top pool.

The maximalist interior of the Mondrian Doha Hotel’s rooftop pool.

“There are three responses to a
piece of design – yes, no, and WOW!
Wow is the one to aim for!”

Milton Glaser

Author, Kerry Hansen by Kerry Hansen

As a designer, it can become an obsession to observe the drifting style choices and the way certain elements such as materials, textures, colors, and accessories rise in popularity to earn their place as cohabitants of the home. With spring on the horizon, many seek a style refresh and there are two main contrasting trends emerging. Most notably, this year marks a return to the natural with a focus on wellness, sustainability, and comfort. This return to the natural and classic reflect an escape from screens and center on creating spaces that are warm and inviting. In contrast, maximalism’s bold patterns, shapes, and textures are showing their quirky personalities in 2020. Here are the interior design trends that will make their way into homes over the coming year.

Design Trends to Watch in 2020

  1. Natural Elements & Colors
  2. Black Everything
  3. Soft Textiles, Curves & Colors
  4. Maximalism
A unique bathroom where plants bring life to the space. It is accented with trends like terracotta, textured walls, mixed metals, natural wood vanity, and wicker elements. This interior designed and rendered in Chief Architect.
A unique bathroom where plants bring life to the space. It is accented with trends like terracotta, textured walls, mixed metals, natural wood vanity, and wicker elements. This interior designed and rendered in Chief Architect.
Espalier SW 6734 a fresh green paint color by Sherwin Williams
Espalier SW 6734 a fresh green paint color by Sherwin Williams

Designers this year are embracing the natural and incorporating non-manufactured elements from the environment into their plans. It is a chance to get back to nature by bringing earthy elements like metal, wood, leather, and stone inside to mingle. Humble materials can be both modern and timeless at the same time. Terracotta is always inviting. Just a few accents of this spicey mixture of orange and chocolate give the home an exotic feeling while remaining grounded. Rich forest green is our pick for top on-trend color choice. Try Espalier by Sherwin Williams, available in the Chief Architect 3D Library. It is fresh, goes well with earth tones, and the perfect highlight for all of those natural accessories.

Find the latest Vienna straw and cane furniture like these chairs, a 2020 trend, in Chief Architect's 3D Library.
Find the latest Vienna straw and Cane furniture like these chairs, a 2020 trend, in Chief Architect’s 3D Library.

Cane and Vienna straw are showing up in the form of room dividers, chairs, accessories, and sideboards. These materials have been reinvented and adapted to contemporary furniture, turning these once modest materials into something much more sophisticated. Find several of these modern classics in the Design Trends No.1 catalog in the 3D Library. Earthy materials like metal, wood, and stone have always been classics of interior design as well. Emerging now are darker wood finishes, mixed metal materials in a single room, and metal textures on walls. Natural materials are versatile, calming, and classic and the classics never go out of style. If you are a fan of the mixed metal trend, try mingling the latest from Delta Faucet with contrasting metal hardware in your next bathroom remodel.

An interior featuring several design trends, including black cabinets, natural accents, dark wood flooring, and a soft feminine print. Interior designed by Estee Design
An interior featuring several design trends, including black cabinets, natural accents, dark wood flooring, and a soft feminine print. Interior designed by Estee Design

Biophilia, the need to connect with other forms of life, is now the practice of incorporating life into the home with elements like plants and water. It is a signature in many current interiors. In fact, a study by Reuters Health has shown that when it comes to office spaces, “People who work in a “green” office literally surrounded by plants, are happier than people in “lean” offices without live foliage.” It is safe to say that this must also be true for the home. These living elements and serene colors of nature complement each other and surround us with their charm. Let your inner green-thumb grow with these perky and fresh plant accents from Chief Architect, perfect for interior and patio spaces.

Feminine colors and soft shapes are a feature in this Chelsea NYC Triplex designed by INC Architecture & Design
Feminine colors and soft shapes are a feature in this Chelsea NYC Triplex designed by INC Architecture & Design

Making this year’s list of emerging trends are elements that soothe. Feminine colors like muted neutral pinks and creamy mint greens take their rightful place among these new favorites. Soft textures like velvet are everywhere and available in every shade no matter what style you lean towards. Incorporating furniture with curved shapes, a nod to the Art Deco period of style and luxury can bring harmony and softness to sleek modern design.

A modern kitchen with black cabinets and natural accents designed by Leicht.
A modern kitchen with black cabinets and natural accents designed by Leicht.

Black is the new black. While always on-trend, black is especially prevalent this year. This chic color is showing up on surfaces like cabinets and walls. You will find it in the form of textured backsplashes, black stainless steel sinks and appliances, black-toned metal fixtures, hardware, and textured surfaces. Black is an excellent choice to highlight those humble materials and has a grounding effect on the sometimes overwhelming multi-sensory maximalism trend. Is it any wonder that black never really goes out of style?

For a Maximalist approach, don't be afraid to mix patterns like this interior by Marcel Wanders
For a Maximalist approach, don’t be afraid to mix patterns. Interior by Marcel Wanders

On the other side of the trend spectrum, a more is more approach has been surfacing in the world of design. It is everywhere from the March 2020 issue of Vogue to the newly opened Mondrian Doha Hotel designed by Marcel Wanders. “Marcel Wanders’ work excites, provokes and polarises, but never fails to surprise, to celebrate and entertain… it is his mission to create an environment of love, live with passion and make our most exciting dreams come true.” Wanders’ multi-sensory maximalist designs are, “bold, beautiful solutions that touch the hearts and minds of people.” This is the essence of maximalism, to embrace the use of vibrant, fun patterns, expressive color, texture, and decoration and bring humanity back to design. This cozy chaos is everything pleasurable, powerful and expressive all at the same time.

A contemporary Italian sofa in a bright pear green velvet.
A luxurious pear green velvet. Incorporate this soft texture into any design style this year.

If you are a fan of the maximalist trend, you will embrace materials like velvet which is rich, tactile, and available in a wide variety of colors. What better way to express yourself than through pattern. The more patterns, textures, and colors, the better. Pulling from the natural trend and especially popular are large leafy patterns on walls, bedding or draperies. It’s okay to mix patterns, in fact, it is encouraged!

Trendy bathroom with large leaf patterned walls, slate bathtub surround, white subway tile, a pedestal sink and plenty of house plants to add life to the space.
This bathroom mixes elements of maximalism and biophilia.
Designed and rendered in Chief Architect.

Don’t be afraid to mix trends. Pattern and texture can be incorporated in a subtle way without going to the extreme of maximalism. Terrazzo, for example, is an extremely versatile material. This mosaic-like material is often made of marble set into concrete and can be bold or subtle. You can find terrazzo in the new Chief Architect Design Trends No.1 Bonus Catalog along with many other trending materials, furniture pieces, and accessories.

A fun way to mix the trends by adding a bold terrazzo backspash to this natural focused design. Designed and rendered in Chief Architect.
Mix the trends by adding a bold terrazzo backsplash to a natural focused design.
Designed and rendered in Chief Architect.

The Chief Architect content team has assembled a
lovely collection of materials and interior pieces for your designs.

You will find them all in the bonus catalog
Design Trends No.1 in our 3D Library.