Top Fall 2021 Home Decor Trends For You and Your Pets

By: Chewy EditorialUpdated:

fall home decor trends 2021
Stocksy/Aleksandar Novoselski

Top Fall 2021 Home Decor Trends For You and Your Pets

Just as sure as we’re first in line for a PSL (pumpkin spice latte, that is), we’re welcoming the season by stalking the stores for autumnal inspo and chatting up architect Ritch Holben of RhDesign for some easy ways to update our digs with the top fall home decor trends to mark the return of cozy season.

We couldn't discuss seasonal decorating trends without looking at the larger, more structural ways that life in the time of a pandemic has influenced home design for both the short and long run. According to Holben, homeowners are now asking for much larger homes that allow for lots of privacy, huge kitchens with a giant island for day-to-day living as well as the possibility of one day once again entertaining, and more options for organizing and storage (such as pantries, larders and even amp-ed laundry rooms). Other items at the top of their wish list? Home offices that aren't also a spare bedroom where you can have a pet sleeping on your feet, and adding or screening and winter-proofing existing porches to be used nearly year-round. All of these macro-moves can be clearly seen in the smaller context of how we are updating our spaces and decorating in fall 2021.

We’ve pulled together five of the top fall 2021 home decor trends, looking for those that are fresh and new and so “I want,” but which are also not so out of reach for most of us. Then, because your pets have stuff and that stuff needs to fit with your decorating style, we’ve added a few on-trend things for them you might want to layer in. Kick off your shoes, curl up and let’s talk happy at home.

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Trend #1: Rustic Vogue

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Photo: OKA.com

Just when we thought we had mastered the Joanna Gaines look of gather-round kitchens and sliding barn doors, we hear “modern farmhouse,” with its cozy-but-clean-lined aesthetic, is on its way out, replaced with the muted colors, prints and textures of English Cottage … but with an edge.

Rustic Vogue is a more buttoned-up version of cottage. This is not your mother’s slipcovered Shabby Chic. It's about mixing existing features like exposed bricks and beams with elegant, sophisticated furnishings, dark palettes and stained woods. Adding statement-making light fixtures and then painting black the trim on the windows, both inside and out for depth and drama. And, pantries are back, this time tricked out in reclaimed shelving with IG-worthy organizing accessories.

(Note: For all you #cottagecore fans, that country and nature-inspired look is not going anywhere!)

Get the look: Designer's Notes

We’re not thinking you’re going to tear out your cupboards this week, but while you ponder a potential remodel (or in a rental, begging to at least paint a wall!) focus accent color tones and stronger patterns on small accessories like table lamps, rugs and throws. Start by adding dark wood chairs or tables, replacing white linens with some that have color or texture, bringing in something vintage and personal, and changing out any wall art by swapping in darker frames. (And, we are so painting our window mullions black!)

Make It Pet-Perfect

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Frisco Dark Wooden Triple Elevated Bowls

Dark wood material fits right into a Rustic Vogue kitchen; raised stand elevates your dog’s drinking and eating height. 
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Molly Mutt Amarillo Pet Bed Duvet Cover

This eco-friendly option comes in a fetching floral and can be stuffed with old clothes and fabric you already own.
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Frisco Sofa Pet Bed with Removable Cover

Luxurious nap spot for your dog or cat instantly trends-up your bedroom with signature style.
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Trend #2: The Golden Hour

As the day ends and the night draws in, we want to build a sanctuary. We're filling our homes in soft fabrics in soothing neutrals as we nest and cuddle. The look is sophisticated and chic but still cozy. Think of this as moving from the sweats we've been wearing for 18 months to the new cashmere version of the sweats we're going to wear for the next 6 months. It's where luxe meets Earth Mother as we move through whatever comes this winter. (Yes, this stuff is deep!)

While neutral hues, such as stone and grey, are finding a home on walls and floors, the big story here is textures.  Sherpa, wool, cashmere, linen—anything that has a "pet-me" quality is what you will be reaching for this fall.  This aesthetic extends to carving out a comfortable space that's just for you. Sure, we want to be together again, but we have come to value privacy.

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Photo: iStock/Aleksandra Zlatkovic

Get the look: Designer's Notes

The idea of earthiness isn't just about textures and tones; it's about feeling grounded and about how you live in your space. One of the most requested elements for new homes or remodels is the idea of a "compound" where everyone can have privacy (and be shielded from ubiquitous Zoom calls). If that kind of home is down the road for you, you can find sexy solitude in smaller ways, too, such as screens and partitions or just a sheltered corner with the things you love (yes, that does include your pets) nearby. As for this look, it can be as simple as a luxe throw on the sofa or going all-in with fabric covered walls. 

Make It Pet-Perfect

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GF Pet Chalet Dog Sweater

We're pretty sure you have one that matches this cozy ribbed turtleneck!
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Pet House Vanilla Creme Brulee Natural Soy Candle

Designed especially for pet parents, these 100-percent natural soy candles contain no dyes or paraffin, and feature clean-burning cotton wicks.
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Bessie + Barnie Faux Fur Reversible Blanket

A snuggle-worthy luxurious reversible blanket with two sides of incredibly cozy faux-fur material in a natural hue.
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Trend #3: Maximalism

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Photo: iStock/John Day

On the flip side of all those warm neutrals and naturals comes maximalism, a trend for those for whom more is always more. Whereas we are told to get the "perfect look" by removing one thing, here, you're adding one more instead. 

Fearlessly mixing and matching colors, patterns and scale, this trend has an exuberance that works in smaller spaces, such as the most decadent powder room, to large spaces with huge scale murals painted or done is wallpaper. Combine this passion for prints with contrasting textures of wood, upholstery, matte or shiny metals, and then throw in a statement light fixture or amplify the impact by making a curtained nook as done here. 

Is this a reaction to endless days of sheltering or working from home? Do we need light and magic and maybe some humor in our lives? You tell us.

Get the look: Designer's Notes

This pretty layered room is a great jumping-in point for experimenting with mixing plaids, florals, stripes, paisley and other prints, but let your imagination run wild here. The key to keeping maximalism from veering into mania is to add one or two colors to ground the scheme. Next-level with over-scaled, brightly colored “feature walls” made not from paint (so last decade), but from photo murals that can be ordered from images you love. For a quick "get the look," cover one wall top to bottom with framed pictures in different shapes and colored frames or just create a smaller tabletop vignette by layering contrasting items.

Make It Pet-Perfect

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Deny Designs Novelty Pillow Pet Bed 

This pretty coral-inspired pattern is ideal for mixing and matching florals. Removable and washable.
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Molly Mutt Amarillo Pet Bed Duvet Cover

A 100% cotton top layer and fleece backing are sewn together giving the blanket a beautiful quilted finish. 
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Frisco Novelty Unicorn Covered Pet Bed

This cave style bed provides the perfect hideaway, while its unicorn shape adds a touch of comfy magic.
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Trend #4: Garden 360

As we mentioned at the top, blurring the lines of what's indoors and outdoors has been happening for awhile. The combination of increasingly warmer weather, the need for socializing safely outdoors and for many of us, changing work schedules, have led to spending more time in our gardens or other outdoor spaces. And becoming houseplant parents on a grand scale.

As we move into fall, we're going to continue to garden 360 with more countertop growing kits and houseplants, but also by bringing outdoor elements inside through furnishings, textures and patterns all inspired by nature. This can mean adding a few new pieces indoors in natural fibers—furnishings in rattan, cane, wicker or wood; fabrics in wool, linen, or cotton—and taking down shades and curtains to allow in more natural light. Outside, if you have a patio, add a heat source. And a few more plants. 

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Photo: iStock

Get the look: Designer's Notes

For some of us, the idea of a backyard with our own garden is a gauzy dream, but don't let reality impede you from being part of the global movement for sustainability. That's what this trend is really about. Finding health and joy in green spaces, growing your own food, lowering your carbon footprint, sourcing raw, natural and local materials like raw steel, local country grade oak flooring and board-formed concrete outdoors and non-synthetics indoors. Change up a rug or pick up some organic fabric sheets, choose lower impact pet products, fill a window with herb plants, try your hand a topiary. Slow down, consume consciously and let nature in. (And your pets in on the action.)

Make It Pet-Perfect

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The Cat Ladies Organic Pet Grass Grow Kit

An organic grass grow kit adds  nutrients and fiber to your pet’s diet and requires no green thumb from you. 
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Patio Pet Doors for Sliding Doors

 This attachment allows your pet to come and go as they please through your sliding glass or screen door.
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Frisco Flower Ceramic Personalized Dog Bowl

Florals are the reason for the season (any season, really). Bonus: This personalized pet bowl is double-glazed.
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Trend # 5: Bespoke and Vintage

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Photo: Stocksy/Kara Riley

Homespun hobby (baking, knitting and, our favorite, making cold-process soaps) kicked off the trend for a return to all things Martha Stewart during the pandemic when some of us had time to burn. We're all still enjoying these pastoral pleasures, but the trend has expanded to seeing value in items that come from the hand or have a history, and seeking out these instant heirlooms. The hottest place to hang on a weekend is your local dusty antique mall or surfing Etsy for small batch treasures. 

Vintage, bespoke and personalized homewares can include your mother's wedding china that she has packed in a closet ("saving for best" is not in our vocabulary in 2021), a quilt you pick up at a flea market to keep or make into a coat, or searching for that one piece of furniture that makes the room (our money is on sculptural shapes—a trend to watch in 2022). And personalization. Monograms are a must. 

Get the look: Designer's Notes

This is possibly the easiest trend to get in on this fall and probably the one that's the most fun (though that gardening one ... hmm). Start slowly with pieces that mean something to you, whether inherited or sourced in the wild, and layer them into your digs. We want our homes to reflect how the pandemic sharpened our focus about letting in only what matters. Antiques mixed with your beloved comfy sofa and something that makes you smile when you look at is is what you are after here.

Make It Pet-Perfect

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Frisco "Dad" White Personalized Coffee Mug

This ceramic mug is customizable with your pet’s photos and personalized text. Sipping swag with bragging rights!
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Trisha Yearwood Pet Collection Braided  Bed

This cozy canine cuddler ticks all the boxes for comfort, with soft cotton cloth materials and a removable interior cushion. 
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Bone Dry Bone-Shaped Wicker Storage Basket

Add some outside influence with this wicker storage bin for toys, leashes, collars and even treats.

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So, that's how fall 2021 is shaping up in home design trends that could work for you and your pets. What we love about all of these is that they have legs, feel right for our times, and won't feel out of date anytime soon. Why not take a look around your place and add in a few fresh, new things (found, bought or borrowed) that could make life at home this fall all the more sweet?

Special thanks to our expert Ritch Holben who owns a full-service design practice based in western Massachusetts and Miami, Florida, creating luxurious, sustainable weekend homes for clients (and their pets) across the country.

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By: Chewy EditorialUpdated:

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