Image courtesy of Olde Wood Ltd
Image courtesy of Olde Wood Ltd

For homeowners seeking simple, yet luxurious and eco-friendly solutions to interior and exterior design, 2014 promises to bring it all home. Hilary Jay of DesignPhiladelphia – a division of the Philadelphia Center for Architecture and the American Institute of Architects – has provided us with a glimpse into what designers and architects all over the country are seeing as the hottest upcoming trends for both indoor and outdoor home design. The main elements appear to be clean, monolithic and environmentally responsible designs that incorporate a luxurious elegance into the everyday home.

White-on-White Kitchens

Although stainless steel and granite are still immensely popular choices in kitchen planning, an all-white design – including appliances – is a trend to watch for in 2014. Some homeowners have cited that stainless steel is not quite as stainless as they would like and that it shows too many smudges and fingerprints. Similarly, some homeowners feel that granite surfaces disguise too many messes and that it is difficult to detect spills, crumbs and other debris on the variegated surface. Many folks are just ready for a change and the clean lines of an all-white kitchen invoke a serenity and simplicity that stainless and granite often cannot deliver.

Spa-inspired Bathrooms

Image courtesy of Moen

Image courtesy of Moen

Homeowners seem to be catching on that they can enjoy the luxury and relaxation of high-end spas right in their own home – and in an affordable way. Another 2014 indoor design trend is a bathroom that incorporates elements of a professional spa including over-sized Roman tubs, whirlpools and hot tubs, and spacious showers with spa-heads and heat lamps. The cost of designing your own home-spa will, of course, depend on the extent of the work needed and the fixtures chosen, but if the research and shopping hours are put in, decadence can be achieved much more cost-efficiently than one would think. Heat-lamp bulbs can run as little as $5.00 and extra wide or dual shower heads can be found at home improvement stores for under $40.00. Most home whirlpool baths will cost somewhere around $1000.00, but a wonderful, over-sized Roman tub can be purchased for less than half of that. Spa-inspired bathrooms add great value to your home and in the meantime can help you and your family enjoy genuine luxury in these sometimes rather stressful times.

Monolithic Materials
What was once reserved for luxury hotels or high-end condominiums has found its way into every day bathroom design. Using one material – like all marble or all stone throughout – is one of the top trends to look for in 2014. This type of homogeneous design may seem to be cost-prohibitive, but some experts maintain that factors such as contractor’s buying in bulk and being able to keep design and installation to one element, help to offset the cost of using pricey materials. Additionally, having all-stone or all-marble materials adds timeless elegance and durability to your home – two elements that always add to its resale value.

Reclaimed Wood Floors
Deforestation is not just about the rain forests anymore. In fact, it is an ever-pressing and looming issue all around the world (another current trend being the rapid rise in re-forestation efforts) and so the increased use of reclaimed wood for interior home projects is an important one.

Reclaimed wood is simply wood that enjoyed a former life and is re-purposed for new construction. Old barns, factories and churches yield beautiful oaks, mahoganies, and walnuts that would otherwise go to the wood chipper and allow them to live again as flooring, cabinetry and architectural elements. The character and durability of authentic reclaimed wood is undisputed, but there has been some controversy over its cost and the veracity of its origins. With the rising trend, prices are driven up as supply decreases and so it is important to do as much research as possible before settling on any one supplier. Also, some less-than-savory lumber dealers have been known to treat and pass new wood as antique or reclaimed and so knowing who you’re dealing with is crucial.