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  • Writer's pictureNicolle Weeks

New Year, New Look: 2009 Decor Trends

Updated: Jul 17, 2020

This piece appeared on

Of course the current state of the world affects our tastes in fashion, whether it's in the form of clothes or a chic home. And as we gear up for thrifty times and more environmentally friendly choices, a focus inward and homeward inevitably follows. Making home the mainstay of our lives means making it as relaxing and tranquil as possible. The anxieties and stresses of the outside world have us craving a retreat and the colours for 2009 reflect that need. Eco Cool Environmentalists have long been proclaiming green the new black, and when it comes to home decor colour for 2009, they're right.

Eco Cool

Environmentalists have long been proclaiming green the new black, and for 2009 colours in home decor, they’re right. A turn back to home and the environment has sparked a new love for the fresh colour, interpreted in home décor as a soft and sweet nod to Mother Nature. Jades and soft greens rule, but feel free to interpret the colour as grassy or effervescent.

“Concern for the environment continues to mount,” says Benjamin Moore’s Canadian colour darling, Sharon Grech, “Materials used in the home are a reflection of this: raw stone, handwoven, organic fabric, and non-endangered wood.”

Fashion’s harsh primary colour scheme is taking a step back and ethnic colours and textures like beading and embellishments are coming to be en vogue again. As home décor follows, a kinder gentler palette emerges in 2009 for nature and country lovers and urban dwellers, inspired by traditional craft makers and down-to-earth colours. Use tribal and ethnic trimmings and accoutrements to highlight natural palettes.

Black is back

Don’t discount black, though, despite the green influence on everything from celeb culture to paint colours. Black is back in a big way and the folks at Benjamin Moore are quick to point out that drama and intrigue in decoration are a lovely addition to the subtler schemes of the coming season. In fact, they’re so bold as to show walls painted black along with their pale green accents.

“Colour selection, first and foremost, is about what one loves,” Grech says. “Pure organic brights work well here with classic black and white, clean lines and simple design elements.”


What other colours should you focus on in your décor? Well, it’s unlikely that you’ll take the plunge and paint your living room black, but along with more subdued organic and the soft neutrals found in nature, some jewel-toned blues accent the rich earth tones of earthy browns. Reds are moving away from the intense territory they inhabited in past years and are headed towards a weathered look that’s less extreme and, thankfully, easier to incorporate into your rooms. Gentle reds and purples can be used as great accents in pieces like cushions, accent walls and flowers.

White’s just right

For a modern look, white is a great colour, as Grech mentioned above. Accent a chalk white backdrop with muted shadowy shades to offset the drama of an all-white room and invoke the feeling of spa living. Purples and yellows are great for accent colours, adding life to white surroundings or a nature-driven palette. Remember to play down colour when working in a white room, the idea this season is relaxation and retreat from our busy lives.

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