Because our experts at Harrisons Curtains & Blinds are constantly delivering free in-home consultations for New Zealanders and listening to what guides our customers in terms of inspiration and fashion, they are perfectly positioned to have a handle on current trends in window furnishings. Their interior designer Anita Shirley ensures that our range of fabrics and designs fit the brief for both classic Kiwis and contemporary homes, so we asked her for the six leading trends that she thinks drive New Zealanders when they’re choosing curtains, blinds and shutters.
Every job that Harrisons does is different, with some wanting colours and bright vivids while others are happier to blend in and play it safe. On their windows they generally look for a more toned down palette and leave the ability to add more colour with pillows and duvets in the bedroom, or cushions in living spaces. This means that they really like that natural linen look – although they do like to choose man-made fibres because they won’t shrink or fade in our harsh sun.
Find the solution for your style of home
As more and more people start to live in apartments and townhouses, they are having to choose their window furnishings more carefully. That industrial and natural combination manages to combine that New York warehouse, minimalist and contemporary style for most modern homes while it’s easier to put in a little more colour and pattern in a more traditionally “New Zealand villa” home. But when you’re looking for furnishings in a smaller apartment, suddenly people are having to consider whether big, bold patterns would “shrink” the room, whether they have room at the side of windows to stack curtains, whether different pleat styles use less fabric or whether they need privacy from overlooking apartment windows.
Shutters have made the trip across the Tasman
Although shutters have been hugely popular in Australia for years, the New Zealand market is becoming more aware of them both for traditional villas (where they look fantastic on those big bay windows) and more contemporary homes. And Harrisons ensures a perfect fit with even the oldest windows (which are almost never square) by using a “z-frame” arrangement to custom-fit shutters onto existing window frames and provide excellent insulation and a seamless join.
The reality TV home makeover
We almost all watch them – those reality shows like The Block that show typical Kiwis renovating, rebuilding or redecorating. And, more and more, we’re being told in consultations that a homeowner wants something that they “saw the other night” on television. These shows can be a great source of inspiration and a wonderful way for people to see how a whole home or an individual room can be transformed by something as simple as custom-made curtains, blinds or shutters.
People want things built to last
Harrisons’ in-home consultations take a maximum of two hours and will cover functionality, colours, products and overall advice. And what they find from even customers who aren’t sure of what they want before we arrive, is that they tend to choose textures, tones and layering rather than really bright colours because they want products that will last through changes in fashions and passing fads. People might only get custom-made curtains twice in their life so they have to get longevity out of them.
We’re obsessed by the property market
Another key reason that drives New Zealand’s tendency towards a more neutral palette in interior design is that many people are concerned about their home’s resale value and want it to appear attractive to as wide an audience as possible.