Best design trends of 2011

As 2011 comes to a close, I thought it would be fun to take a look back at some of my favorite trends from the year (and which ones I'm ready to retire!)

1. Color. Color was huge this year - gone are the uber-white Scandinavian interiors of a few years ago. But now loads of color are being tempered by white and natural woods. Like with Naomi's desk area above (from Design Manifest), a little bold color goes a long way.


2. Painted floors. I've loved seeing these start to pop up everywhere. The floors are usually two or three tone with a geometric pattern. A new way to get a graphic jolt without plunking down big bucks for an area rug. I've seen a few in showcase houses, like this one.


3. Chevron. Yep, still around. As much as I've enjoyed the modern look, this is one trend I'm ready to retire. This settee was shown in Atlanta Homes.


4. Etageres. These wide-open bookshelves have really become popular again, and I love that it's a chic alternative to built-ins for those of us who rent. Bonus for those in my #6 favorite trend, brass, like this one in Lonny.


5. Wallpaper. Love that wallpaper is officially cool again. It's been gaining in popularity the last two years or so, and I can't wait to use some in a project. Especially been loving all the beautiful grasscloth wallpapers, for people who want texture but shy away from pattern. This room in Lonny embraced the look whole-heartedly.


6. Brass. Brass is back in a big way, and I think it's here for the next couple of years. Steer clear of yellowy shiny brass and go for the timeworn look. Yum. Loving these tables from Dwell Studio (via Knight Moves).


Color of the year

Forget "Honeysuckle" (is it me, or is Pantone a bit behind the times?). My pick for 2011 color of the year is kelly green. It was everywhere. Can't wait to see more of it in 2012. Image from House Beautiful via Coco+Kelley.


Designer of the Year

Of course there are many designers with gorgeous spaces debuted this year, but I appreciate a designer who takes on a challenge. And who could forget this tiny studio apartment by the talented Nick Olsen? Everyone was raving about it, and I'm still finding new things to love as I look over the pictures once again. Awesome job, Nick! From House Beautiful.


What do you think of my picks? What would you add? And what are you excited to retire at the end of 2011? Stay tuned - tomorrow I'm sharing my predictions for design in 2012.