Nature-inspired shades of green and blue always attract attention in outdoor assortments. That said, not all green and blue hues are on-trend. Some of them are core colors. This designation doesn’t take anything away from the basic shades. Instead, it clarifies that they can be counted on day-in, day-out for years to come. Core colors always represent more SKUs and more dollars than trend colors.
Trend colors have a shorter, yet powerful impact. These are the hues that catch consumers’ eyes and draw them in. They are fresh, new alternatives that can visually wake up environments, whether they are used alone, with other trend colors or in combination with basics. Trend hues typically enjoy popularity for three years from the first moment they appear on the scene until the last moment they have any significance at retail.
For example, cactus is a core color for outdoor living in the green family. Darker spruce is newer, more exciting and definitely on-trend. It first appeared in 2018 and is forecasted to impact sales into 2021.
Looking To Blues
When it comes to trend-right blues, two options will be top-of-mind. Navy is the first. The incoming status of Japanese style, which includes resist looks like Shibori, is bringing variations on navy back into the trend column for indoor décor. It won’t be long before this color, or even more intense versions of it, begins migrating from inside to outside the home (late 2020).
The second blue of note is petrol. This color feels like navy has been infused with a shot of green. It popped up in outdoor product for the first time in fall 2018, however it had been trending for interiors for about a year before that, and it continues as a top décor color.
Petrol offers a perfect example of how colors are migrating from interior to exterior palettes. Now that patios and decks are considered extensions of the home—with equal status to indoor spaces—consumers are seeking colors, materials, textures and themes that allow a seamless flow from indoors to outside. This updated perception of exterior spaces is the largest factor driving color trends for outdoor living.
Brown is Back
With this in mind, it’s easy to understand why browns are ticking up in outdoor collections. Browns have been off the trend radar for some time, having given way to grays many years ago. Now that grays have become established (basic), and have even experienced declines, a void has been created for a different neutral.
Brown has stepped up to fill in.
At the same time, brown has been away for so long that nearly a generation of consumers sees it as a fresh option. This shift has already begun for interiors, where browns are moving toward the mainstream in 2019. Shades of brown are also moving to outdoor products right now.
Even though variations on millennial pink have been a force in décor, and have recently crept into casual assortments, a different member of the red family feels newer. And it is forecasted to have more impact. Call it cinnamon, terra cotta or even rust. This sophisticated color is poised for real growth. It looks great with browns, exotic with blacks and grays, and stunning with greens.