Home improvement ideas: Fall 2022
By Tonya Miller
Trends |Colored Kitchen Cabinets are Back
All-white or off-white kitchens were all the rage for years. Now this generation has discovered what every other generation who enamored of a sparkling white kitchen realized: They are impossible to keep perfectly clean.
Colored kitchen cabinets are back, and here are the hottest ways to embrace the trend.
Go Bold, Go Home
Big, bold colors like turquoise, Kelly green and deep oranges are having a heyday in the kitchen. Designers are also going for turning the color wheel, picking opposites like deep greens and shell pinks for maximum contrast. Unexpected shades are all the rage, but you do what makes you feel good. Mark Wilkinson, founder of Mark Wilkinson furniture, tells Homes and Gardens that what’s most important in a color is not that it’s on-trend or on magazine covers, it’s what makes you feel good.
“The color in a kitchen — be it on walls or fittings — should last for at least five years, minimum, so try to look beyond immediate trends and choose a kitchen color scheme that will keep you feeling good long term,” he said.
Take Baby Steps
Not brave enough to deck all the walls? Then choose one part of your cabinetry to color, such as a kitchen island or cabinets above or below a bar. That way, you get a pop of color without a huge commitment.
Yellow, a classic sunny kitchen color, can bring new life and vibrancy to an island, and looks especially chic with dark countertops.
If you want to keep the space light but don’t want white, try cool minty or light blue colors. Add darker hardware for some drama. Gray is always a classic color and looks great in contemporary or more rustic spaces.
Little Changes, Big Statement
While you’re painting and have the cabinet hardware off anyway, consider changing it out to breathe a whole new life into your space. First, pick a finish that accentuates that new color. Start with one that matches your kitchen faucet and go from there. Don’t be afraid to mix and match metals, but remember you want everything to coordinate, even if it doesn’t match perfectly.
Projects | Home Office Conversions
Remote work, a side effect of the COVID-19 pandemic, is here to stay.
Projections say that a quarter of all professional jobs in North America will be remote by the end of this year, and that trend is expected to steadily increase. That means you’ll need somewhere more permanent than your dinner table to set up office. Here’s how to set up your most productive space.
Picking a Location
Look for a room in your house — or a space that you can find some privacy — to set up your office. Remember that this will need to be somewhere fairly quiet, maybe with a lockable door for those important meetings. Look for places that are out of the way of most of the traffic in your home and away from distractions.
Next, you’ll need to make it comfortable. Start with the biggest piece of furniture, the desk. There are all kinds of desk options on the market, including ones that fold away for quick storage, all the way to giant executive models with plenty of room for laying out all your work tasks. Pick one that will fit your space and how you work. If you’re sharing the room with something else, like using a guest room as your home office or the family dining room, look for a leaning desk or one with a roll-top or doors so you can put work away when you need to.
You’ll also need a comfortable desk chair that you can sit in all day without pain. Choose one that will let you sit with your knees bent at 90 degrees and your feet flat on the ground. If you tend to fidget, consider adjustable models that will allow you to keep your chair ergonomic no matter your position.
Lighting and More
Make sure your space has plenty of electrical cords for your work setup. Having an electrician install a few more outlets is a small job that may be worth it to make sure everything is safely plugged in. You may also have to have your internet provider install a line so that you can hardwire your computer directly to a connection for security and optimal speed.
Trends | Statement Wallpaper
Wallpaper, that design look from the 1990s that never really went away, is having another moment.
Powder rooms, bathrooms and bedrooms are all getting rolls of patterned paper where statement walls once reigned supreme. Here are some wallpaper trends to get stuck on this year.
Today’s wallpapers aren’t your mother’s country geese. Many of today’s designs feature luxe textures that can give a room a plush feel. And it goes beyond seagrass and fabric-like textures, too. Arte International’s Metal X line looks likes oxidized metal sheeting.
Wallpapers also mimic the look of brick, concrete and even rustic woods. Feature these textures on a statement wall in a bedroom for an earthy, relaxing space.
Floral patterns never go out of style, but in today’s biophilic design world, look for patterns that soften the atmosphere. And don’t be afraid to play with bold patterns in small spaces.
“As a result of spending more time at home, our clients are more on board with adventurous patterns, texture and bold color, or play with scale and form,” Rosie Ward of Ward & Co. told House Beautiful.
Heather Hacket of Christy suggests going big with patterns but keeping the tone classic to allow for longevity in your design.
Peel and Stick
No longer do you need a professional to hang paper, and you don’t have to live with your bold design choice forever. Peel-and-stick wallpaper is getting better every year, and the number of on-trend patterns to choose from can be overwhelming. These wallpapers can even work in rentals to help make a first apartment a first home.
Start out by choosing just one wall, particularly if you’ve chosen a bold color, texture or pattern (and especially if you’ve chosen all three at once). Look for a heavier paper to get the best quality and measure your room carefully to make sure you get enough paper to cover your space. Take into account doors and windows and always order more than you think you’ll need.
You may need a couple of extra tools to make the job easier. Always defer to manufacturer instructions, but consider things like a flexible smoothing tool for working out air bubbles and a small craft knife to help you cut the paper. Clean the walls before you start and, if you can, lightly sand the wall to help the wallpaper stick.