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5 Trendy Design Terms Explained

Does one of these styles resonate with your personality?

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Hygge may not be one of the classic design terms you’re used to hearing, but its certainly become a major trend! The Danish word refers to simple enjoyment. In the home, this translates to creating a space of intentional coziness. This means freeing the home of clutter, which can create stress, and filling it with items that create serenity, like cozy blankets, candles and fluffy pillows. Concepts include creating a space designed for unwinding, like a tea room or a reading nook, and making sure there are enough cozy places to relax with friends around the fire. Warm, natural materials like wood and wool make great additions to hygge decor.

So how can you bring a little hygge into your house? We have a few ideas.

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Feng Shui

Feng shui (literally “wind” and “water”) is a home design term that’s been around for a long time. The ancient Chinese practice of positioning objects to achieve harmony involves assessing factors that either block or support the flow of good energy (“qi”) and patterns of yin and yang. Wind (air) and light must be able to move well, which is why decluttering is so important. Another important aspect is to make sure you have something representing the five elements — wood, earth, metal, fire, and water — in every room. Mirrors play a major role, too, as they reflect energy. Feng shui your home by positioning mirrors in places where you want to increase energy flow, and avoid reflecting anything low energy or negative, such as kitchen trash cans.

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This Japanese philosophy dates back to the 15th century, serving to counterbalance the over-ornamentation, lavishness and use of rare materials that dominated home decor of the time. Wabi-sabi focuses on simple pleasures, relying heavily on authenticity. The idea is to find beauty in imperfection, and accept things just as they are. In the home, this is accomplished through homemade decor and artisanal accents. Allow a decorative statue that’s chipped to remain a focal point in the home, instead of throwing it out and getting something new. An unmade bed or flattened pillows on the couch are meant to be appreciated. Wabi-sabi invites things to be colorful and eclectic, instead of matchy-matchy.

Achieving wabi-sabi design doesn’t happen overnight. Here are four ways to begin to transform your home.

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When it comes to your home, finding design trend terms you resonate with can create a clearer path for decorating in a way that speaks to your personality and preferences. So, maybe lagom is right for you. The Swedish word loosely translates to “not too much and not too little – just right.” Lagom is about finding balance, and in the home that’s accomplished through mindfulness about what you have. For example, don’t declutter just to feel a sense of accomplishment. Rather, toss out only what no longer serves you. Other attributes include upcycling, recycling and using sustainable materials to decorate and create comfort. Lagom emphasizes wood-burning stoves, as wood is one of the most environmentally-friendly fuels.

Check out these 10 ideas for getting more lagom in your life.

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Plants in the home have been on-trend for many years, and with good reason! Biophilia is the “hypothetical human tendency to interact or be closely associated with other forms of life in nature.” In the home, this can be achieved with natural, organic materials like wood floors, floor-to-ceiling windows that bring the outside in, and plenty of indoor plant life to remind you of the natural world. Biophilic design trends welcome colors, especially natural ones. Go for an accent wall or decor items that incorporate more vibrant and warmer colors.

Alexa Erickson
Alexa is an experienced lifestyle and news writer, currently working with Reader's Digest, Shape Magazine and various other publications. She loves writing about her travels, health, wellness, home decor, food and drink, fashion, beauty and scientific news. Follow her traveling adventures on Instagram: @living_by_lex, send her a message: [email protected] and check out her website: