Our 2021 Interior Design Forecast: What’s In and What’s Out

January 5, 2021

On the surface, interior design trends seem to reflecour constant hunger for what’s new and different (we admit it – we LOVE new and different!). But there’s more to it than that. On a deeper level, interior design supports how our lives and culture change from season to season and from year to year. And if any year in recent memory has changed our lives, it was 2020!   

Since the pandemic arrived in Canada last spring, our relationships with our homes have been evolving. With many of us working and learning remotelyand without anywhere to go due to social restrictions, we’re spending more time at home than ever. And we’re starting to notice that our houses, furniture, and décor weren’t designed for so much activity, that they’re not practical, or that they don’t quite feel right. Were realizing that our homes need to accommodate the new normal.  

With so much going on at the cultural level, interior design is expected to make some pretty big shifts in 2021. Here’s our forecast of the décor trends on their way out and the ones headed in this year: 


Sunny kitchen painted in Aegean Teal with yellow bowls on a wooden countertop
Benjamin Moore’s Aegean Teal

Out with the cold, in with comfy hues 

For years, Canadians have been loving the crispness of white kitchens and walls painted in delicate greys. But crispness can feel cold, and let’s face it: all-white-everything doesn’t stand up very well to coffee splotches and kids being at home 24/7Since we’re becoming more invested in our homes as safe spaces where our bodies and minds are nurtured, warmer, grounding neutrals like Dulux's Brave Ground are on their way up, as are cooler colours that still feel cozy and comforting, like Benjamin Moore’s Aegean Teal 

Warmly furnished living room with cinnamon-coloured velvet couch and yellow, black, and brass accent colours

Enter quality, exit fast fashion 

Fashion-forward home décor from flat-pack stores may satisfy our craving for style without breaking the bank, but it’s not usually made to endure the level of use we’re now putting it throughIn addition to being cheaply made, flat-pack furnishings often take up valuable space in our homes without offering much personal meaning – think farmhouse dining room sets with prefab scuffs. Of course, there will always be a need for affordable furniture, but we anticipate a shift towards quality furnishings purchased with longevity in mind. Even if we have to save up a little longer, we’ll know that each scuff and scrape will continue to tell our story for years to come.  

Turqoise living room with an eclectic mix of accent pieces

Hello, layered styles; goodbye, minimalism 

Minimalism has been a major player in the interior design world for decades, but while clean lines and uncluttered homes sound great in theory (and look amazing in photos), they’re extremely difficult to maintain in real life, especially now that we’re heaping more activities into multipurpose spaces and scrambling for storage ideas. That’s why we’re expecting to see a growing appreciation for layered, more eclectic styles that better reflect who we are as individuals and what we need from our homes right nowLittle wonder that granny chic is currently making waves, in which décor is styled to be ultra cozy, a bit mismatched, and very appreciative of handicrafts.  

As we continue to face the challenges of spending more time at home, our interior spaces in 2021 are less likely to be guided by a single design principle and more likely to promote comfort and functionality in ways that are personally meaningful. In any event, our advice is to style your home in whatever way makes you happy and helps you “find your zen” in this topsy-turvy world.  

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On December 1, 2021, Purplebricks rebranded to FairSquare Group Realty. Blog articles published before this date were created under the Purplebricks brand but remain the property of FairSquare Group Realty.

In January 2019, ComFree Commonsense Network Brokerage rebranded to Purplebricks.