Interior Design

Building the home of the future means taking a few nods from the past.

What's Old is New Again

1900s

No downstairs staff required—this trend dating back to the Edwardian era helps to hide the prep work from house guests. “The butler’s pantry and butler’s kitchen are all becoming one,” says Mark Molthan of Platinum Homes by Mark Molthan.

Before electricity, gas lanterns were a requirement. Now they add a peaceful, romantic aesthetic to your favorite spaces. “People look to make the outdoor living space more inviting with features like gas lanterns,” says Lauren Grasso of Ellen Grasso & Sons.

Though technology may abound inside, go au naturel when it comes to materials. “We love working with natural accents and authentic texture in every space of our clients’ homes,” says Ben Coats of Coats Homes. “Incorporating natural materials isn’t just a trend—it’s a way to connect a home’s space and the family that abides to their natural surroundings.”

1940s

Back in the days before central heat and air, homes were much cozier out of necessity. Today you can enjoy it as an indulgence. “We’re seeing luxury amenities in the entire master areas, like fireplaces in the changing or dressing area,” says Susan Newell of Susan Newell Custom Homes.

More delineated spaces harken back to the postwar era with prefab houses—guaranteed to create a feeling of warmth. “Our floor plans are now being designed with a bit more compartmentalization of each living space to create a cozier feel in everyday living and when entertaining,” says David Leite of David Leite Custom Homes.

1950s

Think back to the nuclear family—like the Cleavers—who knew how to live small. “We’re building more two-bedroom homes,” says Don Ferrier of Ferrier Custom Homes.

1960s

Wallpaper is a trend we love in bathrooms,” says Kelly Ongena of Hawkins-Welwood Homes. “Patterns can be bold or subtle, but they give a unique splash to a bathroom.” (Paisley optional.)

1990s

We’re all a bit nostalgic for the clean lines of the ’90s—especially when it comes to details in the bath. “Frameless mirrors are becoming the norm,” says Jeff Dworkin of JLD Custom Homes.

Don’t be afraid to show off that book collection. “Built-ins are an owner’s feel-good item,” says Kim Swanner of Britton Homes.

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