Trends in Architecture & Design

Recent trends in architecture and design can influence home buyers’ house choices, remodeling ideas, as well as large and small décor purchases. For instance, ceramic tiles are “having a moment” and this can translate to popularity in Spanish style roofs as well as ceramic tiles sold as coasters in trendy stores. Read on for important architectural and design trends culled from AIA Reports, the web, and top design magazines.

Green: There has been a concerted effort to green urban and unused spaces. We are seeing more parks, gardens, insertion of plant life into actual building surfaces (rooftops and facades), and transforming viaducts. The green roof of the Barnes Foundation in Philadelphia and The High Line in NYC are prime examples of the latter two. On a more individual level, people are incorporating garden features into their homes both inside and out. Even a seemingly small thing – such as window herb garden – is an incorporation of plant life into a home.

If it’s outside, it’s “in.” Continuing on the green theme, homes now embrace the outdoors! Specifically, there are a lot of outdoor living rooms being created in new on existing homes, screened porches are experiencing a resurgence, and there is an increase in outdoor kitchens and fire pits.

Prefabricated architecture: The way of the future house is pre-fab! Gone is the stigma of a mobile home or unattractive, cheap structure. Now pre-fab conjures images of stylish concrete, paneling and chic modular houses. Designs are made on a computer, created in one spot and then assembled elsewhere – all of which saves money.

Modular Home image from The Daily Green: http://www.thedailygreen.com/green-homes/latest/modular-homes-green-building-gorgeous#slide-7

Open floor plans are not new, but they are now more common in both homes and offices. In addition to large open rooms with designated areas, there is a movement towards flexible floor plans with sliding doors and pocket doors, allowing for change, adaptation, specialized needs. This theme also ties into aging in place.

Media rooms and in-home theaters are the new family rooms. With the advent of new technology, bigger TV screens, streaming movies, and the convergence of computers and TVs, a proper media room is becoming increasingly important.

Neutral colors (tans, tawny colors and grays) remain the dominant colors for paint and fabric. Lately there has been a shift from the usual suspects to slates, blues and even mellow purples. These are still neutrals, but more cool than warm in base color. Trends in paint colors are slow-moving so don’t expect this mellow look to change overnight.

Repurposing: A new building is not necessarily new anymore! In efforts to save money, to preserve historic structures and to rest lightly on the land, architects and home owners repurpose buildings, spaces and materials. Ultra-cool, modern or historic homes are popping up, using the bones of old warehouses, barns, factories and churches.

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