How To Go Nude – In Your Home Decor

Designers in the interior and fashion worlds are always inspiring each other–what better inspiration for both than the human body? For 2016 and beyond, one of the biggest looks is the use of “nude” design: from warm neutral hues inspired by skin and cosmetics, to a general sense of letting down walls and leaving your space under-dressed. Here’s my take on how to go nude in your decor, anywhere:

Interior by Toronto Interior Design Group

Winter White All Year

Benjamin Moore named a crisp stark white (#OC-117 Simply White) their colour of the year, but what’s the perfect hue to pair with it? The hottest trend right now is to contrast clean white with winter white (a warm off-white), rather than a bold accent, to bring out the subtle beauty of the creamy undertones within.
In this TIDG designed kitchen, the barely-there warmth of the kitchen cabinetry white (Benjamin Moore #OC-122 Cotton Balls) is welcoming and adds an air of sophistication, while preserving the breeziness of the highly sought-after “all white kitchen” look.

Cheeky Colours

Along with creamy winter white, other fashion-inspired “nude” shades are continuing to grace sleek interiors, especially sumptuous elephantine greys and soft blush pinks. These warm, natural hues make perfect compliments to in-demand metallics such as rose gold, copper, brass and satin nickel. Layered together they create a story that’s full of humanity and life, yet tranquil.

Nude palettes generally rely on warm undertones and true neutrals, but for those who crave an occasional cool colour pop, small hits of oceanic blue glass, or leafy greenery, will fit right into the natural vibe.

Interior by Toronto Interior Design Group

Natural Essence

After a decade of deep espresso floor domination, ashy wood tones with a more “au naturale” stain effect are bringing authentic character and a sense of history to both modern and traditional spaces.

The more radical looks of ultra-blonde, ebony, and orange-tinged stains have had their time; for 2016 consider a more reserved, aged-cabin palette and let your grain show.

Layer Up

Going nude doesn’t have to mean taking it all off: a neutral sofa piled up with pillows and throws (with a lush rug layered underneath) creates a rich look without needing any busy patterns. Use a mixture of natural tones and contrasting textures (like the glass tables and metal link basket) to give a sense of variety, but skip the loud statement pillows with hot colours or cute sayings to capture this dreamy, Scandinavian essence.

Interior by Toronto Interior Design Group

Nothing to Hide

Beautiful draperies will never be out of style, but they are also never a requirement! Consider using roll-down, in-window shades instead of hanging curtains, especially if you’ve got a view that doesn’t need covering up. This helps modern spaces achieve a minimalist look, but also works in a traditional homes to feature great details such as mouldings and trim.

For the most seamless look, match your shade colour approximately to the wall tone, so that when closed the two blend together and all the focus is pulled inwards to cozy furnishings.

Interior by Toronto Interior Design Group

Let Down Your Walls

Dividing up a bathroom with additional walls or hanging curtains can make these already small spaces feel cramped. Try separating your toilet and shower from the main space with fixed glass panels instead, and skip the sliding door (which often involves a clunky track system). A frosted, smoked, or linen-finish glass will give a sense of privacy but keep the space feeling open.

Vardagen series jars by IKEA

A Few More Raw Ideas

-Store snacks or baking supplies in clear glass jars in differing, evocative shapes, letting the humble materials and interesting silhouettes create architectural appeal.

-Outdoor inspired furniture gives your interior an airy sensibility; try semi-see-through caned chairs around an eat-in kitchen table for casual elegance.

-Celebrate the imperfections and soft tones in an aged wood table or a faded, flaking painted chair, contrasting the piece with some sleek materials like glass or polished metals.

-Skip the opaque window treatment and try just ethereal sheers to filter light and views–use ones with a quiet pattern to keep out prying eyes without completely covering up.

For more design inspiration from me and my Toronto Interior Design Group, visit, and find me on Twitter and Instagram at @yanicsimard. To read more on the trend of white with nude off-whites, check out my story on

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About Yanic Simard