None of us can see into the future, but that’s never stopped people from making predictions. As each year ends, we look ahead to the next one and issue forecasts: This movie will be huge. This sports team will triumph. This celebrity couple will break up.
The world of home décor is no exception. As 2016 ended, design experts started looking ahead to the new year. Let’s look at some of 2017’s top home decorating trends, and how they connect to country décor.
THE COLOR OF 2017
Each year, the color experts at Benjamin Moore choose a color of the year. Last year it was “Simply White.” This year, they’ve veered in the opposite decoration, naming “Shadow” as the color of 2017.
Although the name suggests a total absence of light, the Los Angeles Times says Shadow is a “deep, dark purplish hue,” like an eggplant.
How does this relate to country décor? Because it’s a style that embraces more muted colors: mustard yellow, mossy green and dark reds and purples. The LA Times describes Shadow as an “opulent” color, but by using it as a backdrop to your country décor, it can become something understated.
THE CASE AGAINST THE COLOR OF 2017
As we were researching this article, we came across a Washington Post story that argued against choosing a color of the year.
“If you think the whole idea of yearly paint trends is a bit ridiculous, you’re not alone,” writers the Post’s Megan Buerger. “For a more understated and low-maintenance palette, consider historical paint lines. There, you’ll find colors that have truly stood the test of time.”
Historic colors are those that reflect Colonial America, and – as Buerger notes – some companies take this distinction very seriously, studying historical records, paint samples and old building fragments to capture the appropriate color.
Whatever the outcome, the result is the same: historic colors and country décor are a perfect match. They both connect your home to the past and give it extra character. As Sherwin-Williams’ Sue Wadden told the Post, “It’s the anti-McMansion approach.”
When Houstonia magazine asked interior designer Marie Flanagan for her 2017 décor trends, one of the things she chose was repurposed pieces.
In her case, that meant admiring a company that makes its furniture from fallen trees, and turns rugs into ottomans. Reusing and recycling old materials is certainly a noble pursuit, and completely in keeping with the county décor mindset.
We’re big proponents of repurposing, whether it means taking an old watering can and using it as a vase or turning a flea market find into a work of art.
Here’s a décor trend that we’re proud to say we saw coming. As we said back in October, vintage vinyl floorcloths are all the rage these days, with homeowners seeing them as sturdy, easy-to-clean alternative to area rugs.
Floorcloths have their roots in Colonial America, and were essentially the go-to floor covering in the days before linoleum. Not only were they easy to keep clean, they were often featured intricate patterns, bright colors and country motifs.
“They’re perfect for anyplace you need something low profile but highly durable — in an entryway, around an island, beneath an eating area, a laundry room, or even a playroom,” says designer Lia Papasimakis Fraccaro, speaking to Pennsylvania’s Morning Call newspaper. “Their non-slip surface makes them great for outdoor use, as well.”
Like we said at the start, none of us can predict the future 100 percent. Consider these trends suggestions, not absolutes. In the end, we always come back to the same decorating ideal when it comes to country décor: Choose whatever makes your home feel like home.
We like to think we’ve gotten pretty good at giving our readers advice on decorating their homes using country decor and on entertaining guests.
But one area that we haven’t really touched on is the nuts and bolts of preparing for guests, especially ones who’ll be staying for more than just a few hours. With that in mind, we scoured the best resources for hospitality and entertaining for some guidance on preparing for out of town guests, and came away with these tips: Continue Reading
“No politics, no religion.”
It’s a hard-and-fast rule of keeping the peace at family gatherings. But even if you stick to this decree, there’s no way to ensure that there won’t be conflict when everyone sits down to eat.
That doesn’t mean you’re helpless. When we were putting together our Holiday Guide for this year, we were pleased to come across an article in Real Simple that suggested seating people according to their personalities. Try it this year and see if it leads you to a lively-yet-civil gathering. Continue Reading
We love history here at Piper Classics, and have enjoyed using this blog to discuss everything from presidential homes to the American tradition of quilt making.
But somehow, even though we’ve explored the origins of Easter, Halloween and the Fourth of July we’ve never taken a good look at the history of the king of the holiday mountain: Christmas.
Where did Christmas caroling come from? Why do we kiss under the mistletoe? Who was St. Nicholas? Read on to discover the origins of some of our most cherished holiday traditions. Continue Reading
Holiday shopping can be tough, especially when you’re trying to avoid maxing out your credit cards.
But not every gift has to cost an arm and a leg. Here are 10 Piper Classics products that possess originality, charm, and thoughtfulness. No one will ever know they were less than ten dollars.
1. Frog Trinket/Key Box
This cute little cast iron frog would make a great decorative addition to your porch, home or garden. But he’s also ready to perform double duty. Use him as a paperweight, or flip his mouth open to store your spare house key. Cost: $9.09 Continue Reading
We began our series on using historic homes to find country décor inspiration by talking about the simple Iowa farmhouse featured in the painting American Gothic.
Today we’re going to conclude by discussing another house that inspired a great American painter: Olson House, which was depicted by Andrew Wyeth in a number of paintings and sketches between 1939 and 1968.
Among those works was Christina’s World, considered to be Wyeth’s masterpiece. Completed in 1948, Wyeth got the idea for the painting when he glanced out the window of his home in Maine and saw his neighbor, Christina Olson, crawling across her field and picking blueberries. Continue Reading
Burlap has held a number of different jobs over the years, and for a long time, none of them were very glamorous.
Farmers made their clothing from burlap during the Great Depression. It’s durable and breathable, which is why coffee companies use it to transport beans. During World War II, we fashioned camouflage netting from burlap. Communities all over the world have counted on burlap sacks filled with sand to protect them against flood waters.
But lately burlap has shifted beyond its utilitarian origins. The same versatility that allowed people to use it for clothing and shipping and flood protection makes burlap the perfect fabric for fashionable country décor applications. Continue Reading
Ask people what they know about President William Henry Harrison, and most of them will mention the same fact: He gave his inauguration speech in the dead of winter, caught pneumonia and died in office 30 days into his first term.
Based on that little nugget of trivia, Harrison doesn’t seem like a good fit for our series on finding country décor inspiration from historic homes.
But we think Harrison and his home – called Grouseland – are still pretty interesting, if not inspiring. Let’s go back to 18th century America to begin our story. Continue Reading
For many of us, a love of history and respect for the past is reflected in our homes through the use of historic accents and other country decor elements. We’ve enjoyed exploring notable historic figures and homes with you. So far, our series has looked at one home that inspired a classic American painting, and another home where an American icon wrote his finest work.
Today we’re going to focus on Denver’s Molly Brown House, named for the philanthropist, activist, socialite and Titanic survivor Margaret Brown. To spend any time studying the house or its namesake is to see a story of success and endurance. Continue Reading
Are you searching for a way to introduce something beautiful into a functional area of your home? Would you like to give your floor a new look?
Consider the vintage floorcloth.
These floor coverings are in vogue right now, but they can trace their roots to Colonial America. The first three presidents had them in their homes, which shouldn’t be that surprising: back in those days, everybody owned a floorcloth. Most modern floorcloths are made of heavy fabric which is then coated with several coats of gesso, before being painted with decorative motifs and patterns. They are then varnished to make them waterproof. Continue Reading
In today’s always-connected, tech obsessed society, many of the more genteel niceties once associated with inviting guests to your home – or being a proper guest in someone else’s home—are often overlooked.
Indeed, it isn’t unusual today for a house guest or a partygoer to not consider presenting their hostess with a small token of gratitude. Perhaps even more common, however, are those among us who would love nothing more than to arrive at the home of a hostess with a perfectly thoughtful gift, but who simply don’t have the necessary disposable income. Continue Reading
If you’ve spent any time at all on Facebook or Instagram over the past year or so, you are probably aware of the growing trend toward extremely small living spaces.
Upwardly mobile couples have dreams of moving into a so-called “tiny house.” A new movement known as “van-dwelling” has seen scores of millennials tearing up their leases and living full-time in converted trucks and camper vans. And self-improvement gurus like Eric Altucher are preaching the benefits of extreme downsizing and simple living.
It’s one thing to move into a small space. But how do you go about decorating? Continue Reading