8 living room decorating trends for 2022, according to designers

Remember the formal living room? A space dedicated to cocktails and snacks? Fortunately, this concept is long gone and today’s salon lives up to the name it was given: a place to inhabit and just be. For this reason, living room decorating trends for 2022 are leaning towards an aesthetic that complements what we need: a multifunctional piece that rises to meet us where we are.

So what does today’s modern living room look like? We asked several top designers and their sentiments encourage a closer look at not only how this piece looks, but also how it makes us feel, think and dream. Current trends lean towards “practices that enhance the experience during the time spent there,” says Elena Perelli, co-founder and co-owner of Las Perelli. Soft sofas, lovely scents, natural light and organic accents. Each of these approaches leans into the truth that real life means enjoying every second we have.

Image above by Michelle Nash

Trend #1: Marshmallow Upholstery

Photo of Alex Bates’ coastal cottage, seen here.

If we got you at “marshmallow,” credit goes to designer Susan Bednar Long, director and owner of SB long interiors. The Dallas-based designer is seeing a major trend toward what she describes as “marshmallow-style furnishings.” Think puffy, cloud-like and dreamy. The idea here is to sink in and create the ultimate living space that feels as inviting as it looks.

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The sofa reigns in the living room. This trend relies on high-quality design that incorporates curved sofas with oversized rounded arms and plush neutral and white fabrics, says Long.

Trend #2: Moments of Reflection

Photo credit: Buff Strickland, courtesy of Page Gregory Matthews.

A gorgeous mirror has long been an interior designer’s dream trick to open up the energy of a space. Eliza Fox, lead designer at Flow Smart Living + Interiorssays mirrors are big for 2022. This common accessory “reflects natural light, creating the appearance of a larger space,” she adds.

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The key to finding a striking mirror for the living room is to think of it as a work of art. Consider framing as critical, just as it is when nesting a photo or painting. Wider profile mirrors hung opposite a window will catch more natural light, reflecting a larger beam and opening up the room.

Trend #3: Emphasis on light

Photo courtesy of Las Perelli.

According to design sisters Beatriz and Elena Perelli, the founders of Las Perelli, light is as important as tangible objects in any room. “We always attach particular importance to the lighting”, says Beatriz, “with a particular focus on the quality of the light”. By quality, the duo means aiming for soft casts and nothing too harsh or blue-based (i.e. most LED bulbs out there).

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The Perelli Sisters recommend a mix of light sources projected from different angles. This includes low lights, which they say create a warm and cozy ambiance, and floor lamps. One thing they avoid is harsh overhead lighting. The idea is to create a weave-like aesthetic of various beams.

Trend #4: Vast greenery and woods

Photo credit: Molly Culver.

“Salons are moving in a more natural direction,” says Pearson Turnbull, owner of General Santa Ynez. This means incorporating elements that pull directly from the forest of greenery and natural materials, including an abundance of wood (and even stone). “For 2022, it’s all about tactility,” he adds.

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“Of course, we all have more houseplants than we know what to do with at this point,” says Turnbull, who thinks this aesthetic is here to stay in the living room and beyond. He suggests completing the greenery look with neutral tones and textured wooden pieces, from wooden chairs to accent pieces.

Trend #5: Feminine curves

Photo credit: Interiors by Andrea Rodman.

Take a moment to consider classic living room furniture: shapes tend to be straight and square. That changes in 2022 notes Andrea Rodman, lead designer and owner of Interiors by Andrea Rodman. Furniture with beautiful organic shapes, round curves, more sculptural elements will be important this year, she says. “I think there’s an appeal for more feminine elements in interiors, with people looking for more comfort and beautiful, calming spaces to spend their time in.”

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Look for seats with curved corners and a flowing design. Implementing a single piece like this can soften the rest of the room. Rodman is particularly fond of Hem’s sculptural chairs. They “are extremely comfortable with a sculptural light and airy feel to them,” she shares.

Trend #6: Chic Pet Accessories

Photo courtesy of Faunamade.

We design our homes for humans, but our furry friends have just as much to do at home. More than 23 million American households have adopted a pet during the pandemic, according to the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. Now it requires some attention in the living room, which for a long time Remodeler occasional editor and interior designer Meredith Swinehart sees itself being great this year. “Now that we’re well into the ongoing pandemic and many people are permanently spending more time at home, they’re upgrading less obvious household items like their pet products,” says Swinehart, who has designed a range of dog and cat accessories to fill this need. “When they’re around all day, pet owners realize how much their pets’ things color the living space and they want something both human and pet can love.”

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Swinehart tells me that many people invest in better pet beds after realizing how much time their furry loved ones spend on them. When looking for a new comfy item for Fido, consider comfort and quality in tandem with aesthetics.

Trend #7: Flexible, Multipurpose Items

After everything we’ve been through and continue to go through, we’re taking inspiration from the Eagles and going “Take It Easy.” This goes for how we live at home and how we decorate. This is the path that Jennifer Rhode, principal designer of Jennifer Rhode Design, says take. “I’ve always championed spaces with minimal, adaptable furniture and after living through almost two years of covid, I think it’s imperative that living rooms, in particular, be springy and super functional,” he comments. she. “More than ever, they need to be flexible to meet so many needs.”

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Rhodes says to look for salon items that perform multiple functions. She especially likes a pouf or “pouf”. These pieces are versatile, she says, and work as extra seating, side tables, and footrests; “They are easily movable so you can easily rearrange your space to best suit your current needs.”

Trend #8: Warm atmosphere

The Perelli sisters make our hearts sing when it comes to the 2022 shows goals: Keep it cozy, inviting and fun, they say. After all, this piece is for life– and that must mean our best and most fulfilled lives. “We believe that playing music and lighting candles in the living room are practices that enhance the experience during the time spent there,” says Elena. So take it easy, take it easy and enjoy.

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Consider your sense of touch and smell for your living room. The Pirellis say throw big blankets on the sofas, lay big natural rugs on the floors (even multiple ones!) and add books, perfumes and photos that create a mood that’s uniquely yours.

Dora W. Clawson