You can’t be outdoors all the time, although it’s worth a try, so we turned our attention to interiors. What are the important trends in furniture? How about tile and stone—and while we’re at it, what’s going on for you cinephiles with home theaters?
And if you’ve decided to wrap up your current home and move on, we asked a home stager what appeals to buyers in the Hamptons now.
Comfort is a big theme in furniture right now. Life seems hard enough: your furniture shouldn’t be! Abbie Gonzalez at Room & Board says, “Very popular in the New York market right now are low and modern furniture pieces with an emphasis on comfort. Sofas like The Sterling, which was a new addition for 2017, have been best sellers for us. With its stainless-steel legs and a striking combination of angular and contoured lines, this sofa is streamlined but not overly formal.”
And don’t forget to keep things airy, adds Abbie. “Open bookcases help to complete a room without the heaviness associated with standard bookcases and can add height and personality to a modern space.”
Debra Gildersleeve, of Renee’s Incredible Interiors in Mattituck, says, “The East End offers so much inspiration for home décor. Coastal influences have become a mainstay in design. Varying tones of summer colors like sea glass and coastal blues are popular against neutral backdrops in shades of cream, gray, and white. Modern neutrals give a bright, open feel to any space and can be dressed up or down easily. Casual, beachy vibes are enhanced with accent pieces in cool shades of blue, sand, and again sea glass. Driftwood accents—lanterns, end tables, and trays—are perfect subtle additions as well.”
“People are leaning away from more traditional home furnishings and going for a more casual, non-cluttered look. Mixing furniture and styles like rustic wood with metal accents with those soft, neutral colors is fun and interesting. People today want their space to be a reflection of themselves, and the possibilities are endless.”
At Southampton Masonry, they’re all about ease right now. Easy living and easy care inside and out. Spokeswoman Mary Slaight says, “Extremely popular right now is indoor/outdoor living, as with this outdoor kitchen and bar area, paved with bluestone. One huge trend is porcelain pavers, which can be used on the inside of the house and the outside, making the transition seamless with the same flooring.
“The biggest trend in tile right now is porcelain floors with the look of real wood. You get the look of beautiful real wood with the durability and easy care of a tile floor. With today’s HD scanner technology, a company can take a picture of real wood and put it on a porcelain tile so that it’s very difficult to tell whether it’s real wood or not. Except when it comes to care: you can get the tiles wet, they don’t absorb anything, and outside, you can easily hose down your wood floor!”
Technology, of course, is front and center when it comes to home theaters, and Brian Farley, Vice President of Sales at Southampton’s Crescendo Designs is on board! “The technology available now for home theater is astonishing. Take, for instance, the Kaleidescape Strato 4K movie server. Why buy the disc when you can download it? But this is not streaming: the picture and sound are that of the original ultra-high definition Blu-ray Disc!
“4K projectors, too, are nothing like the older version. Sony, the predominant manufacturer of 4K projectors, offers what many call ‘a light cannon’ because it uses a laser to product the light.”
Today’s technology is also being used to make more comfortable theater seats. Brian says, “Cineak is one of the leaders in high-end, handmade seats with the latest technologies. Their seats come with with four to six motors with presets (as in your car), so when you find that perfect position you can save it as a preset!”
Of course, excellent sound is crucial in your home theater, too. There are now speakers in the ceiling and there can be more speakers on the side wall for up to 34 channels of sound altogether. Datasat surround sound processing units are leaders in this technology, Brian says.
Speaker design has also moved forward. At one time, speakers had to use horns to focus the sound in the room. While this allowed the speakers to play louder, the sound was often harsher and two dimensional. Enter Wisdom Audio. Brian relates, “Wisdom Audio introduced new technologies that are unique to their products. Through new manufacturing processes and decades of product refinement, theirs are being called by many the holy grail of speakers.”
Comfort—or a feeling of comfort, anyway—is also important in staging your home for sale. Meridith Baer, Hamptons home stager, says, “I insist on lots of ambient lighting to set a welcoming mood and golden light: table lamps in the entry and all other spots with a console table near an outlet. During the day, they make the room feel cozy and at night, when you turn off the overhead lighting, they create a romantic mood.”
Other trends for home staging: fresh towels and bedding to give the feel of luxury. Bowls of fresh lemons, limes, or apples look pretty. And of course, don’t forget flowers. Meridith say, “I like orchids because they last for six weeks to two months!”