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2. Colour Blocking
Forget about playing it safe: 2023 is all about going bold with brighter hues. Hong Kong-based interior designer Iman El Zeky recommends giving colour blocking a try: it’s essentially about using contrasting but complementary colours to set a mood. “Using blocks of colours on walls or surfaces is a fabulous way to bring energy to a space.”
El Zeky suggests using your favourite hue as the main colour, then selecting shades that contrast yet harmonise with that primary shade. “The complementary colours can be introduced to the interiors in the form of painted walls, or in less obvious ways such as with a decorative rug, a cushion or a throw. You can really transform a space by painting your ceiling as part of a colour block concept,” she says.
3. Colour: Pantone’s Viva Magenta
For homeowners seeking a more dramatic look, rich and vibrant hues like Viva Magenta, Pantone’s Colour of the Year, would be their shade of choice. This colour is a joyous tone inspired by carmine red, a dye used widely in food and cosmetics.
Use this standout hue on accent pieces to instantly invigorate a nook of your home, or be bold and apply the vivacious tone to a feature wall or kitchen cabinetry to add a burst of colour to a subdued neutral scheme.
4. Colour: Soft shades
Gentle hues that speak of nurturance and self-care will take centre stage in 2023. WGSN teamed up with colour experts Coloro to pick their 2023 Colour of the Year, Digital Lavender. Clare Smith, colour strategist at WGSN, describes it as a sensorial shade that connects to well-being and optimism: “Digital Lavender signifies [the] stability, serenity and digital escapism that so many of us have built into our recuperative rituals to both protect and improve our mental health in challenging times.”
Smith adds that this hue is ideal for bedrooms and bathrooms, and also works well in spaces with tech accessories. “This colour reflects a more hopeful view of the future, with healing rituals and soft, therapeutic colours being key,” she says.
American paint brand Sherwin-Williams chose Redend Point as its Colour of the Year. “Two major themes we wanted the 2023 Colour of the Year to reflect were warmth and empathy. This beautiful blush-beige hue reflects the trend of neutral tones warming up and people embracing earthy elements,” says Sue Wadden, director of colour marketing at Sherwin-Williams.
This versatile hue is a good accent colour for bathrooms and dressing rooms; spaces that are dedicated to beauty and self-care routines. “For example, you could use it on small accessories, or even on a ceiling,” says Wadden.
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5. Colour: Nature Inspired
Nature-inspired tones will remain popular. These include Wild Wonder, a muted yellow hue selected as AkzoNobel’s Colour of the Year.
“It reflects the different ways that nature teaches and nurtures us,” says Heleen van Gent, creative director of AkzoNobel’s Global Aesthetic Centre. “We’re recognising nature as the source of everything in our lives, and re-evaluating our relationship with the natural world. As people search for support, connection, inspiration and balance in the world today, they’re diving into the wonders of the natural world to find it.”
This leaning towards natural hues is reflected in Nippon Paint’s colour selection as well. Its top shade for 2023 is Dark Green, a deep emerald hue that is intended to convey signs of regeneration and life, while promoting mindfulness and creativity. It draws its verdant influences from such sources as moss growing on rocks, as well as succulents and cacti thriving in a desert environment.
6. Style: Maximalist Spirit
Forget about playing it safe and embrace maximalism—get as creative as you want when designing a home that tells your own personal story. You can achieve a bold look by layering a space with different materials and colours, or introducing interesting patterned fabrics and wall designs in your home.
“I think people are looking for excitement in the post-pandemic era. Clients are more willing to explore more adventurous patterns and colours, and ways to make their home feel more vibrant and alive,” says Elaine Lu of Hong Kong-based design studio Lim + Lu.
Jeremy Tay, founder and director of Singapore-based firm Prestige Global Designs, agrees. “When executed well, a dark and moody colour scheme can result in sophisticated spaces that can really make a powerful impression,” he says.
7. Style: Fun Trimmings
Using patterned trims and tassels is a good way to add a personalised touch to your decor. These work very well with heavy fabrics and can complement boho-chic interior schemes.
“There are many different options you can use, from trimmings with subtle neutral colours and classical patterns, to pieces with bold and modern geometric patterns and opulent velvet fabrics,” says Heimgartner-Wong. Bring a touch of nature into your home with Zimmer + Rohde’s Arboretum trim collection from Travers, available at Cetec. Inspired by the beauty of nature, this garden-themed collection was created using a variety of techniques, including embroidery and block printing.
8. Material: Sustainable Fabrics
Environmentally conscious textiles made with recycled materials will become more popular in the year ahead. Christina Lee, Kvadrat’s country director for Singapore, observes that more designers and homeowners are choosing sustainable fabrics.
“Consumers are very conscious in their choices and long-lasting products of high quality are very much in demand,” says Lee. “We can definitely feel there is a momentum in terms of sustainability due to the longevity of our products as well as the aesthetic and sustainable properties of the textiles.”
In response to this demand, Kvadrat has launched fabrics such as Really, a material made from discarded t-shirts and other upcycled fabrics. It’s ideal for use on acoustic panels, soft furnishings and tabletop surfaces. Another top pick is Re-wool, a Kvadrat fabric made using 45 per cent recycled wool collected from scraps produced by the brand’s UK-based yarn spinners.
Michele Koh Morollo and Hong Xinying
HDP Photography (Iman El Zeky) and Courtesy of brands and studios