Colorado Springs News, Sports & Business

Gazette Premium Content Interior designers work with color, design trends

By Linda Navarro Published: August 9, 2013

What's hot? Gray walls.

What's not? Formal living rooms. Seriously. .

Those are just two of the 2013 home design ins and outs spotted at the Parade of Homes, which starts Friday, as well as on HGTV, cococozy.com, Pinterest and in decorating magazines.

Some trends work here. Some are snubbed big time.

The Parade of Homes is a perfect time for home-design daydreamers to tour the newest offerings by local builders as they pick up the latest interior design and home layout trends and mentally redecorate their own homes or plan for the future.

Gray is supposed to be a hot color and has been for several years. Even the 2013 Southern Living Idea House has a peaceful gray master suite. We're not talking battleship gray here. Instead, think heavenly, a soft cashmere gray. Here's the twist: It's the thing in multimillion-dollar New York lofts and big Southern homes, but in Colorado Springs, not so much.

Housing trends are like other trends that often start on the East and West Coasts and take awhile to get here, said Terri Mitchell of Interior Enhancing LLC. Mitchell is one of the designers featured at this year's Parade of Homes.

"We've heard for two years or more that gray is the new neutral. You know how many I've done? None."

White, off-white, almond, beige and natural shades are a yes, she said.

Interior designer Christy Cassidy says that as a California girl she does like gray - but make it platinum. Cassidy, another featured Parade designer, sees a lot of the blues, sea greens and purples that go with it.

"I might use a taupey gray carpet, oak floor with a gray wash, maybe a beachy thing with a cooler effect or kitchen cabinets that are bisque with a rub ... shabby chic. This cool, natural stuff is in."

A trendy color in this year's design magazines is emerald green, but both Mitchell and Cassidy caution restraint when using such a strong color.

The key for colors and trends is the lifestyle of that client, Mitchell said. Maybe she'll add touches of persimmon, tangerine, the oranges and the spring greens as pops of color paired with mustard yellow, caramel and off-white. Or she brings in the greenish teal shades.

If someone wants new, bright colors but doesn't want a persimmon-colored wall, she recommends adding them through artwork, pillows and other accessories. Want that gray? Bring it in with a light fixture, a brushed metal planter or a trim - but not in long-term elements like flooring, tile or cabinetry, she said.

Another ongoing trend is organic elements in every area of design. This approach works beautifully and quite naturally in Colorado, said Mitchell. "It's Pottery Barn."

Cassidy concurred, adding, "I take a lot of my cues from Pottery Barn and Restoration Hardware: a lot of natural colors and textures, a lot of natural fabrics, a lot of woods."

Now what's with those disappearing formal living rooms? It's a Colorado/mountain thing: They don't fit with many laid-back, family oriented lifestyles.

Instead, Coloradans prefer a great room concept that's larger than ever before - with an open kitchen and an area where a person can have his or her own space, an office, an organizational space or where their kids can do homework. This is a multifunctional heartbeat of the home, Mitchell said.

People here are also "lopping off the master bedroom sitting rooms."

People prefer multiuse. Also, they're simplifying their lives, something she has seen in homes rebuilt in the Waldo Canyon fire area. Besides, Mitchell queried, how often do people really sit in those master bedroom easy chairs?

Cassidy is taken with houses with huge open spaces and also sees formal dining rooms disappearing. "People here are so comfortable and they're making the houses useable. People here don't have furniture that will sit for 20 years with plastic over it."

PARADE OF HOMES

When: 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Friday through Sept. 1

Where: Throughout Colorado Springs

Tickets: $10, youth 17 and younger free. Available at Safeway stores or Parade sites. For details, go to springsparade.com

Something else: Photos from the Parade homes will be posted on Facebook, Pinterest and Houzz, and routes can be mapped courtesy SpringsHouses.com.

PARADE OF HOMES

When: 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Friday through Sept. 1

Where: Throughout Colorado Springs

Tickets: $10, youth 17 and younger free. Available at Safeway stores or Parade sites. For details, go to springsparade.com

Something else: Photos from the Parade homes will be posted on Facebook, Pinterest and Houzz, and routes can be mapped courtesy SpringsHouses.com.

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