‘Harsh is out and soft is in’

Devon-based tile manufacturer British Ceramic Tile offers its design and trend predictions for 2017, with softer and natural interiors making waves next year

With the world of interior design mirroring the fashion industry, it’s no surprise that new trends and influences from fashion capitals around the world filter through to our homes each season. Colours, shapes and patterns all evolve to provide us with inspiration for the year ahead with what we see on the catwalk bringing style, flair and personality to every room.

This year we can expect to see an extension of existing trends with a softer, more feminine approach according to the British Ceramic Tile’s, head of design, Claire O’Brien.

“The feeling is for natural, homespun interiors that offer a sense of comfort,” explains O’Brien. “Gone are the harsh edges and stark contrasts, instead design trends are veering towards the more romantic and tactile.

“Modern neutrals such as greige and blush provide hushed, gentle base tones that marry effortlessly with the ever familiar monotones, while bolder accents of blue and green add a much missed vibrancy. Metallics are aged and distressed, not brass, with flashes of burnished copper, rose gold and stainless steel evident in all design schemes from the kitchen through to living room. Texture is in abundance. Hessian, weaves and natural wood, all combine to deliver that comforting, harmonious feel.

“Homeowners are being encouraged to experiment and be brave, combining styles and looks to create something more personal and eclectic that reflects their individuality,” she said. “It’s all about creating a home we can live in. One that’s comfortable, welcoming and delivers that feel good factor.”

Key colours

Greige: Grey has been softened with a mixing of palettes for 2017. Organic, natural and incredibly versatile, greige combines the cool base tones of grey with the earthy qualities of beige. A subtle neutral, greige is the perfect backdrop for accent shades of paprika and rust, as well as vibrant blues and green.

Blue: Blue is a colour that’s full of emotion and can vary from energetic and vibrant to calming and soothing. This year blue is about played down decadence. Design schemes using blue as a base will be clean and uncomplicated, populated by pattern and decoration with velvets and satins adding a rich and inviting quality. Pure tone of blues that are true to form such as sapphire, sky blue and azure will be very much on trend.

Green: When it comes to versatile colours, green is the one shade that blends with everything. Colourful, yet enduring, green offers a wide spectrum from leafy, botanical hues, through to moss green and emerald. We’ll see green and blue accents brought together into one striking design, set against neutral backgrounds of contemporary grey and fresh white.

Blush: When it comes to neutrals, blush is a romantic alternative. Elegant, feminine, innocent, blush is the new nude and a fresh alternative to beige, grey or off-white. Adding more warmth and depth, blush adapts to any room delivering grown up style, and is made all the more appealing when teamed with metallic accents such as copper and rose gold, as well as greens, grey and blacks.

Paprika / rust / burnt umber: Imagine the crossing of seasons. Tuscan sunsets featuring autumnal shades of paprika, rust and burnt umber that exude warmth. Earthy and ambient, these shades evoke that feel good factor and will feature discreetly within the home.

Metallics: Metallics are set to soften an industrial aesthetic in 2017. Brushed, tarnished, reclaimed, the high shine lustre of metallics has been replaced with an aged, distressed look. Incorporate antiqued treasures amongst your design schemes by layering metallic with larger format plain ceramics across walls, or incorporate them creatively as accessories.


Natural materials: Warm, textural and full of natural charm, wood is a material that typifies the trend for tactile interiors. Dark shades of wood are popular for next year, but where wood is really holding its own is as a wall or floor covering. In tiles we’re seeing a movement towards smaller format wood-effect ceramic tiles and interesting herringbone patterns rather than classic, elongated planks.

Oily marble-effect: Marble is a luxurious look that is here to stay particularly in the kitchen or bathroom. Offering a sense of opulence, the real material comes at a cost, which is why ceramic effect tiles are set to be the go to choice next year. Offering the same aesthetics as marble at a lower cost, ceramic tiles are durable and easy to maintain. The tiles can be used to transform even the smallest of bathrooms into stylish and sophisticated spaces. Look out for oily marbles featuring smoky, flowing veining within a monochromatic colour scheme, as well as statement coloured marbles with hints of blue and green.

Soft gentle forms: Next year is all about texture when it comes to interior design. Clean simple lines will be complimented by soft textures and natural forms, which all combine to give a calm, restorative look. Plain white ceramics featuring extra layers of detail such as waves, geometric patterns and forms inspired by ceramic tableware will add visual intrigue.

Terrazo: The trend for artisan, rustic interiors has filtered through to interiors with Terrazo effect tiles returning to the style bible for 2017. A sustainable, composite material of quartz, marble, glass and metal mixed with cement, Terrazo tiles are known for being incredibly hardwearing and available in an unlimited colour palette. Often found on the floors of historic buildings throughout the world, Terrazo effect ceramic tiles will be a trend to watch, bringing to life the reclaimed and adding an element of natural decoration.


2016 majored on hexagonal shapes, but in 2017 it will all be about mixing and matching scale such as large and small format, rather than a new shape taking centre stage.

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