Our clients are getting braver. 2020 is the year of pattern and color! In the past year, our industry has seen a strong pattern and color push for products across all categories, and I believe 2020 is only going to be more exciting. Although the vast majority of clients still like to play it safe with their large percentage selections like wood flooring, most other categories are seeing a burst of the unexpected.

Social media has become the new guinea pig. Thousands of inspirational images are at our clients’ fingertips just waiting to give reassurance that they, too, can try something bold that may be out of their comfort zone. In many ways, as a designer, this has made our jobs easier. The client brings in an inspiration picture, and you know exactly what they are envisioning. In some ways, it is a challenge. We need to have access to materials our clients desire so that they can see it and feel it. So, what is all the rage? What do we as designers and salespeople need to expand in our showroom offerings? 

Pattern is the new black 

Pattern is crossing all categories including carpet, luxury vinyl tile (LVT), and ceramic and porcelain tile. Level-cut loop patterns in carpet are more advanced and accepted more than ever before. From carpet looks with heavy barking to heavy pattern with contrasting colors, the market is seeing it all, and the clients are demanding it. It’s no longer acceptable to just have your basic plush, frieze, and cut-loop options. Our clients want design.

It is no secret that the LVT/rigid core category is the fastest-growing category across all segments. The demand for unique and authentic looking product is the highest we’ve seen yet and the consumers are demanding tile looks with prints and unique patterns. Many of the manufacturers are now expanding into options, such as digital print and press embossing, to provide the client with very unique and detailed pattern. Ceramic and porcelain tile was the leader in this charge and is only growing. The options are now vast—from painted Old World looks and modern pressed metals to traditional mosaic approaches and funky—maybe even weird—styles. Patterns and prints from very detailed, clean looks to the more modern abstract looks are now available at prices the consumer can afford.

Color is back 

Not only are clients now not scared of color, but they are requesting it. Bold and colorful carpets, luxury vinyl plank, and tiles are all the rage. Clients are requesting color from eclectic multicolored spaces to subtle pops of color and everywhere in between. We are experiencing bold greens and blues in fireplaces and back splashes, jewel-toned bathrooms with touches of metallic, subtle but playful pastels in secondary and children’s bathrooms, and deep navy in entryways and mud rooms. From floor to wall and even ceiling there is color! 

So what does this all mean? We need to embrace it, we need to be comfortable with it, and we need to educate ourselves on the properties of how color and pattern impact a space. Lastly, we need to sell it. We need to take our personal preferences aside and listen. Listen to what the clients are requesting, what they are dreaming of. In 2020, that’s color and pattern!