Written by Brad Mee

Talented designers across Utah are creating spectacular design “moments,” many of which showcase some of the most compelling 2018 decorating trends.

Design by Dorothy Day Lee and City Home Collective. Photo by Kerri Fukui

Velvet Furnishings

No longer considered frumpy or old fashioned, velvet is now rather chic and adds plush, luxurious texture to furnishings of all styles. We love what it does to this dining room’s modern chairs.

Color, Color, Color!

Color is all the rage, and grown-up pastels are big news. These aren’t sweet pastels but are tinged with gray to give them a more livable, grown-up look— much as the rich shades of pink and rose execute in the room above.

Statement Light Fixtures

When it comes to lighting, things continue to look up. Head-turning chandeliers are finishing rooms with jewelry-like magic.

Design by Dorothy Day Lee and City Home Collective. Photo by Kerri Fukui

Black Cabinets

Rather than sticking to white cabinets, we are moving to the dark side, thus adding drama as well as depth to the most-used room in the house.

Bold Tiles

Large graphic patterns, contrasting colors and handmade forms are making tile a bold choice for fashion-forward kitchens and bathrooms. We love the above stunning backsplash tiles by Tabarka Studios.

Little to No Upper Cabinets

Kitchen walls devoid of upper cabinets are opening rooms to light and space. Pantry walls in addition to open shelves help to make up for any missing storage.  

Natural Elements

From light fixtures to accessories and accents, natural elements like the woven pendants shown above provide relief from high-tech elements and sleek surfaces.

Design by Dorothy Day Lee and City Home Collective. Photo by Kerri Fukui


Timeworn and imperfect furnishings, like this old Spanish chest, add eye-catching soulfulness as well as artistic authenticity to any space.

Big Impact Wallpaper

Oversized patterns, high-contrast colors and surprising designs are making wallpaper another hot decorative element in rooms for 2018.

Design by Alice Lane Home Interior Design. Photo by Nicole Hill Gerulat

High Contrast

A black and white palette continues to reign supreme in many homes, from traditional to ultra-contemporary. Inspired by classic black-and-white check marble, this entry’s dramatically graphic floor therefore gives the classic color pairing a fresh, one-of-a-kind look.

Brass Accents

Brass and gold tones are another trend sticking around. The colors continue to add shots of glamour and warmth to rooms throughout the home.

Two-Toned Cabinets

Whether the colors subtly or boldly contrast, two-toned cabinets add character and dimension to today’s kitchens.

Mixed Metals

Whether you’re designing a room or a wardrobe, matchy-matchy metallics are so yesterday. Today, a mix of brass, nickel and copper (as well as others) finish a room with chic shimmer while boasting distinctive style.

Design by Alice Lane Home Interior Design. Photo by Nicole Hill Gerulat

Deep Moody Colors  

White is enjoying a moment, but so too are deep, saturated colors. As demonstrated in this ultra-glamorous office, deep, dark colors add drama while also allowing colors to pop and metallics to shine.

Design by Anne-Marie Barton. Photo by Scot Zimmerman

Artisan Elements

Stepping away from mass-made and seen-everywhere fixtures and furnishings, many of today’s most compelling design elements are either authentic art pieces or hand-crafted furnishings. This spectacular metal-and-glass screen performs as a see-through wall, defines the entry space and as a result makes a unique statement of style.

Warmer Palette

Goodbye cold grays. Today, warmer gray tones are moving in, and as a result are delivering warmth and comfort to all rooms of all styles.

Jewelry-like Light Fixtures

Head-turning chandeliers and pendants continue to evolve in style, while spectacularly dazzling pieces are finding their ways into many surprising spaces, from entries to kitchens and even home offices.  

Design by Anne-Marie Barton. Photo by Scot Zimmerman

Freestanding Tubs

Sculpture-like freestanding bathtubs continue to be statement makers in today’s bathrooms, especially in master baths where luxury is at its peak. As showcased in this space, artfully integrated faucets and plumbing (as well as stunning light fixtures) heighten their decorative prowess.

Light and More Light

Designers look for every opportunity to capture natural light and let it brighten and expand interior spaces. Larger windows, simple (or no) draperies and shimmering surface treatments foster this approach and, in many cases, also deliver breathtaking views.

Design by Anne-Marie Barton. Photo by Scot Zimmerman

Monochrome Spaces

Delivering a sense of tranquility and simplicity to our homes, tone-on-tone decorating is big news. The trick to avoiding a one-note look is to incorporate varied textures and finishes that also add depth and dimension to the highly edited color palette.

Exaggerated Floral Patterns

Finally, head-turning floral patterns continue to evolve for wall coverings and fabrics. As demonstrated in this stunning home office, over-scaled proportions and mural-like designs seem to deliver new life to this timeless decorating pattern.

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Brad Mee
Brad Mee is the Editor-in-Chief of Utah Style & Design Magazine.