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Top 12 Furnishing Trends We Liked in 2012

What Was Hot for Furniture in 2012


Looking back at 2012 we found some furnishing trends that really stood out. Some of those trends may even have enduring power beyond this year and continue well into 2013 and beyond.

This list is made up of leanings and directions in furnishing in addition to furniture fashions. Fashions as we know are temporary and tend to come and go more quickly than trends.

Here are the trends in no particular order

1. Tangerine Tango

Pantone Tangerine Tango 17-1463
Photo (c) Pantone

It is not every year that the designated color of the year catches on to this extent. But 2012 was the year of Tangerine Tango. A rich, burnt orange that was seen across all facets of home furnishings, Tangerine Tango continued to reign for much of the year.

Take a look at more Pantone Color of the Year predictions here. Let's see if Emerald, the 2013 color of the year achieves this popularity.

2. The Tufted Look

Kendall Sofa with Diamond Tufting and Nail Heads
Photo (c) Thibaut

Tufted furniture has been with us for centuries, but as with everything old, it has received some new treatments and 2012 saw it retain its popularity.

Tufting is popular for headboards and seating. Both deep tufting and button back styles have been popular, and deep tufted ottomans have found a lot of favor due to their versatile functionality.

3. Industrial Chic

Pendant Lamp from Oil Drums
Photo (c) The Bramble Company

A couple of years ago, Industrial chic became immensely popular, courtesy Restoration Hardware who made it popular in the U.S. Industrial chic has evolved and everyone seems eager to join in. Accessories, lighting, and furniture, you can find it all in this look.

Reclaimed material including metal has been upcycled to create objects that all seem to have a story to tell.

4. Curvy Furniture

Curved Sofa from Palliser
Photo (c) Palliser

In case you have always suspected it, it's true. Curvy furniture brings up more positive emotions than furniture with straight angles. Researchers at Oregon State University found this to be true.

Maybe that is why in these trying times we have turned to furniture with curves. It would be interesting to see if this trend still holds into next year, but right now you can see soft curves in seating and bedroom furniture, and even outdoor furniture.

5. Light Wood Finishes

Scroll Nesting Tables from the Rhapsody Collection
Photo (c) Hooker

Light wood finishes bring a clean fresh look to the surroundings. This year saw a rise in popularity for these finishes that look natural, simple and sometimes even refined.

6. Passionate About Mattresses

Therapedic Eco Gel Blue Heaven
Photo (c) Therapedic

The mattress industry has seen solid growth in the last few years even as the rest of the home furnishings industry saw little.

Even though Tempur-Pedic continues to be a leader, consumers are exploring the new products out there. Newer materials and techniques have made it easier to get a comfortable mattress for any need. On the flip side, there are so many choices out there that it can be bewildering.

Despite being very expensive, luxury mattresses also continue to become more popular.

7. Menswear Inspired Decor

Pillow Selection from Kevin O'Brien Studio.
Photo (c) Kevin O'Brien Studio

Menswear inspired home furnishings provide a masculine touch to balance out living spaces. Patterns such as Houndstooth, Argyle, Plaids and Paisley provide accents in a home.

The look can be found in bedding, pillows, rugs and even furniture.

8. Steamer Trunks

Steamer Trunk
Photo (c) HGTV Home

The love affair with steamer trunks and stickers from faraway lands continues unabated. Antique suitcases and steamer trunks continue to be sought after. The result? We are seeing them everywhere in different forms and colors, but undeniably based on, or looking very much like steamer trunks of yore.

9. Graphic Patterns

The Westgate Collection in Spice
Photo (c) angelo:HOME

This year saw the love for graphic patterns grow. All kinds of graphic patterns were seen, from garden gates to chevrons and plenty more. The clean lines and angles made these patterns popular.

10. The Dragon Rules

Dragon Lamp from Jonathan Adler
Photo (c) Jonathan Adler

2012 was the Chinese Year of the Dragon, and whether people believed in the associated mythology or not, dragons reigned supreme this year because they managed to catch the public's imagination. After all a dragon is supposed to bring good luck, power and prosperity.

11. Moroccan Style

Sofa with Ethnic Inspired Fabric
Photo (c) Massoud

The exotic Moroccan style also seemed to hold our imagination. It part of the trend towards a more eclectic and ethnic inspired home. Also witness the popularity of ikat for instance.

Moroccan inspired furnishings and accessories let us bring the exotic into our homes through rich colors, interesting textures, and outstanding patterns.

12. Gold!

Caché Chest from Hooker
Photo (c) Hooker

Gold continues to be an important accent in home furnishings, but it has been somewhat restrained. It can also show different influences to provide a number of looks that are at once sumptuous and provide lots of surface interest.

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