Trending Color Palettes of 2021

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WORDS BY Gillian Grefe

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Published on January 26, 2021

A new year invites you to breathe new life into your space. As always, the easiest refresh is color.  

But the world of color is enormous and ever-shifting. Where can you begin to look for inspiration? 

You could consider Pantone’s somewhat surprising 2021 Colors of the Year, Ultimate Gray and Illuminating. Or turn to Havenly’s 2021 Color of the Year, the gorgeous Moody Sage. Or go down the rabbit hole of Pinterest and the paint-chip display (yes, we too have walked away from Home Depot with over 40 different paper swatches).

But rather than consider all the technicolored combo possibilities, we’d like to give you a running start. Our Havenly designers predict these four palettes will be the life of the party this year:

Modern Boldness

Buh-bye, wall-to-wall neutrals. Hello, bold. The Modern Boldness palette uses lively, vibrant and adventurous shades that command attention and make a design come to life. 

This palette involves rich twists on the standard primary hues, such as a velvet honey instead of a traditional yellow, a bolder burgundy rather than straightforward red or a rich, nuanced blue instead of the standard-issue hue.

Individually, the colors might seem overwhelming, says Havenly designer Vivian Torres. But when combined, “they can create a dynamic color scheme that has been somewhat elusive in design over the last few years when it was all-neutral everything.” 

To see Modern Boldness in its full Technicolor glory, tour this dynamic Florida vacation home.

Jewel Box

You’ll notice a theme here… After a year when home became so central in our lives, people are looking to infuse more color, joy and brightness into their spaces. 

Jewel Box tones rely on magnetic colors that arouse the senses and add pizzazz to a room, Torres says. 

This direction features classic colors like blue and green in electric shades and mixes in uncommon purple hues like amethyst, “creating an unexpected, surprisingly delightful aesthetic that tells an interesting story.”

Elevated Nature

“To bring a sense of calm and restoration indoors, we’re witnessing a rise in more nature-inspired decor elements — including colors, materials and forms — but in a fresh and new way,” Torres says.

Elevated Nature represents a sophisticated twist on the rustic and farmhouse style designs we’ve seen over the past few years. The basic elements remain: organic textures, earthy colors and greenery. 

But Elevated Nature also incorporates luxurious textures like velvet and highlights well-appointed touches of black, white and metallics for more of an upscale feel. 

See how Elevated Nature comes to life in this Cali-boho living room.

Dusty Desert

The Dusty Desert palette blends color with an inviting warmth. 

“It’s a welcome departure from last year’s more muted, subdued approach to desert-inspired color palettes,” Torres says.

It makes a statement without overpowering a room and reminds us that a balanced and measured approach to risk-taking is still in style.

Leap into the new year with a new palette, with help from Havenly designers. The first step: take our style quiz.

Words by Staci Sturrock